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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

19th annual Sun Parlour Rodeo reaches capacity

by Sylene Argent

When thinking of breaking arena records and personal bests in relation to a rodeo, one may think of the highest score ever achieved in the bull ride or the quickest time earned in the cloverleaf barrel race.

  The 19th annual Sun Parlour Rodeo itself, however, set its own record on Saturday evening as it reached capacity for the first time in the event’s existence. As a result, Sunday’s show was limited to advanced ticket sales only.

  “Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your continued support of our event,” the Pavao family, which hosts the annual rodeo, stated. “We are beyond grateful for the sponsors, spectators, and volunteers for all they have done to support the Sun Parlour Rodeo. It’s truly amazing to see the outpouring of support towards the worthy community causes.”

  Each year, the Pavao family says a special ‘thank-you’ to their family members and friends, including Nelson Carvalho, for their unwavering support.

  The Sun Parlour Rodeo is annually held on Pavao family farm in Ruthven, and members of this local family band together every year to welcome some of the top cowboys and cowgirls in the province, and beyond, to compete in an array of events as part of the Rawhide Rodeo Company.

  The thousands in attendance during the Saturday and Sunday evening performances watched these rodeo athletes stay atop bucking broncos, chase top times in the barrel race and pole bending classes, and strive to be accurate and agile in the tie-down and breakaway roping events.

  Since its inception, the Sun Parlour Rodeo has raised over $400,000 for local causes, including medical equipment at Erie Shores Healthcare/Leamington Hospital. In the past, the rodeo has also supported other pieces of equipment to Leamington District Memorial Hospital, and has supported WE Care for Kids and The Hospice of Windsor Essex County Inc., Erie Shores Campus.

The proceeds from this year’s ticket sales will also be donated to local charities.

Uniquely, the Sun Parlour Rodeo offers something to pique the interest of anyone coming through the gate, whether that included marveling at the equine performances, shopping at the vendor booths, enjoying food served onsite, or laughing as the rodeo’s clown kept everyone in the stands engaged between events.

  The event also offers a chance for local youths to get involved. Those young enough were able to participate in the mutton busting and calf scramble.

  Essex MP Chris Lewis took a moment to recognize John Pavao and his family on Saturday evening by presenting a certificate of recognition. In addition, John received a Queen’s Platinum Jubilee pin in recognition of the many years of commitment dedicated to the well-anticipated rodeo and the community causes it continues to support as a result of their efforts.  

  Former Kingsville Mayor Nelson Santos also took a moment to congratulate Sun Parlour Rodeo on another successful event, and Leamington Mayor Hilda MacDonald also supported the event on Saturday evening.


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