The Wauconda Area Chamber of Commerce's 50th annual IPRA Championship Rodeo weekend got off to a rousing start Thursday evening with a Wild West-style "shootout" on Main Street in the village's downtown.
The shootout kicks off a weekend of live music, family activities and professional rodeo performances at Golden Oaks Equestrian Center, Case Road and Route 12, Wauconda.
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An opening night concert Friday features "Ricky Nelson Remembered," plus performances by Jessica Rae and Bella Cain, starting at 5 p.m. Tickets purchased at the gate cost $20 for general admission and $40 for the VIP section.
The two-day rodeo, co-sponsored by Russo Power Equipment, begins at 5 p.m. Saturday, with professional rodeo performances beginning at 7 p.m. Highlights include a routine by the Midwest Renegade Equestrian Drill Team, along with six rodeo events: saddle bronc riding, bareback bronc riding, bull riding, cowgirl barrel racing, steer roping and tie-down roping.
Derringer & Rye will perform before and after Saturday's rodeo show, and food, beverages and souvenirs will be available. More daring visitors can test their skills on a mechanical bull.
Gates open at 1 p.m. Sunday for Family Day sponsored by Palatine Oil Co. A free petting zoo, $3 pony rides, a moonwalk and mechanical bull rides are available.
From 1 to 3 p.m., the band Chuck-A-Roo will perform for kids, and the IPRA Championship resumes at 3 p.m.
General admission tickets for the rodeo are $15 for adults, $6 for children ages 5-11, and free for kids younger than 5. For more, visit www.waucondarodeo.com.