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Ropin on the River: More than a rodeo
Little buckaroos can have fun like all the big cowboys
GECAC PROMO3-5-21-11
Riding the stick horses available for sale at the rodeo are, from left, Michael McAtee, Sydney Ladrido, Nicholas Pitts, and Christian Nuon. - photo by HIME ROMERO


• WHAT: Ropin’ on the River CCPRA sanctioned rodeo
• WHEN: Saturday, June 4, & Sunday, June 5, with rodeo starting both days at 2 p.m. Other activities start at 10 a.m.
• WHERE: Dell’Osso Family Farms, Interstate 5, Manthey Road, Lathrop
• ADMISSION: Entrance to grounds is free. The actual rodeo is $20 for adults, $15 for children ages 3-12, and $15 for seniors.
• MORE INFO: Contact Give Every Child a Chance at 823-6222.
• TICKETS: Tickets are available at two branches of the Bank of Stockton in Manteca and Ripon as well as the Golden Valley Federal Credit Union on Center Street in Manteca across the street from the city library. They are also at the Manteca Visitors Center at The Promenade Shops at Orchard Valley plus the GECAC headquarters on Commerce Drive in the business park behind Home Depot.

There is little doubt the inaugural Ropin’ on the River rodeo will be action packed.

The decision by California Cowboys Professional Rodeo Association to provide fairly rare double points for winners of the events at the rodeo taking place June 4-5 at the popular Dell’Osso Farms in Lathrop just off Interstate 5 at the edge of the San Joaquin River virtually guarantees competition will be plenty and aggressive.

And while the price is in line with other rodeo admissions - at $20 for adults, $15 for children ages 3-12, and $15 for seniors - you don’t have to even see a single bull rider hanging on for dear life to have a good time.

Parking as well as admission is free. Dell’Osso Farms will have their popular zip line open as well as other attractions. There will even be a petting zoo.  Family entertainment also includes vendor and concession booths, the Clydesdale Exposition pony rides; western-style BBQ, and souvenir shopping in the Country Store.

The old-fashioned western family barbecue is the featured event on Saturday, June 4, starting at 11 a.m. The Knights of Columbus will be serving pulled pork BBQ sandwich, home-style potato salad, corn on the cob, drink and dessert.  The cost of the barbecue is $25 for a family of four, or $8 per ticket.  

And if you have a hankering to bring back some mementos of the day, GECAC see to it that The Country Store is appropriately stocked.

You can get everything from a stick horse ($25) for those galloping little buckaroos to unique pull tab jewelry, and red neck wind chimes ($10 to $20) that seem to have been inspired by Minnie Pearl.

For plenty of laughs there are cow face masks ($7) and horse face masks ($7) complete with appropriate sounds if you squeeze the snout or nose.

You’ll find shopping totes ($4 to $6) rodeo-inspired toys ranging from $2 to $7, boot key chains for $3, a cast iron horse knocker for $10, western-themed key holders (for $5 to $7), unique pull tab jewelry from bracelets and earrings to pendants for $20 apiece to cushions aimed at making stadium-style seating such as at Big League Dreams a lot more comfortable for $12.

There are, of course, T-shirts with Ropin’ on the River art work for youth ($12) and adults ($15) plus more.

There is also a Cowboy Church on Sunday, June 5, at 10 a.m.

There will be a special guest appearance from former Manteca resident Ted Nuce who won the 1985 PCRA World Championship Bull Rider and is a Ring of Honor inductee.

The rodeo offers opening ceremonies, bull riding, and bronco riding, and timed roping events in the 2,500-seat arena.  Winners will be presented a cash prize and/or a buckle. There will be two youth events as well - junior barrel racing for youth 12 and under and Mutton Bustin’, for youth 3 to 6 or fewer than 60 pounds.

Tickets for the rodeo and for the barbecue can be purchased by calling 823-6222.