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Toppenish making plans for 75th anniversary of Pow Wow & Rodeo

TOPPENISH - Fast paced rodeo action, humorous entertainers, a gala parade, fireworks that fill the night air and much more are planned for the 75th edition of the Toppenish Pow Wow & Rodeo.

This year's fun-filled event, in the city known as the town where the west still lives, will be staged July 3-7.

The centerpiece of the Pow Wow, of course, is the four-day PRCA-sanctioned rodeo, which traditionally draws some of the nation's top cowboys into town over the Independence Day holiday.

The roping, riding and bucking competitions in the rodeo arena will take center stage at 7 p.m. the nights of July 4-6. Tickets for the PRCA rodeo, priced from $15 for reserved seating to $12 for general seating and $5 for children, are available now at the Toppenish Chamber of Commerce office (chamber@toppenish.net).

Rodeo patrons are then invited to mosey on down to the outdoor saloon after each of the main events all three nights, where musical entertainment will be provided by Lil' Mikey, a local DJ.

Special rodeo events are also planned for the morning of July 5, at 8 a.m., featuring slack competitors; Saturday morning, July 7, with a 10 a.m. barrel race; and Saturday night, July 7, when a 7 p.m. Extreme Bulls Qualifier competition will be held, as well as a wild cow milking contest.

The Toppenish Rodeo Grounds, open all five days of the Fourth of July celebration, will again feature an Indian village, which will host a welcoming feast on the opening day, July 3. Also on-site will be one of the largest carnivals in the Pacific Northwest-Davis Amusement-Cascadia. Special all-day ride passes, which allow kids to ride the carnival rides to their hearts' content, are currently available at a cost of $18 at the Toppenish Chamber of Commerce office, the Market Place in Toppenish and the Toppenish Rodeo ticket office.

Visitors to the rodeo grounds will also find plenty of free entertainment. Scheduled to perform July 4-7 throughout the afternoon and evening those four days are cowgirl trick performer Karen Quest, stilt walker and trick roper Lucky Starr, and Eric Haines, known for his feats of juggling and unicycling while entertaining crowds with his part rock concert, part comedy show.

General admission to the rodeo grounds will be $4 for adults and $2 for children.

Prior to the rodeo grounds gates opening at noon on Wednesday, July 4, Lower Valley residents are invited to attend the annual Lions Club Cowboy Breakfast at Toppenish's Post Office Park. The grills will be up and sizzling by 6 a.m. that morning. At 11 a.m. later that morning, the annual Wild West Parade will weave its way through the downtown streets of Toppenish.

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