Casino ready for rodeo riders, fans


Management of the Royal River Casino want to see a new Flandreau rodeo become a sustained community event.

But first, the focus is on getting the rodeo this Friday and Saturday to be a success for fans, performers and Flandreau.

“It’s exciting. We’re looking forward to it being a very successful event. We think it can draw a large crowd of people to Flandreau for the whole weekend, said Tim Morrissey, marketing director for the casino. “Not only will it be great for the casino but it will be great for the entire community.”

Flandreau Rodeo Days starts at noon Friday with slack events for participants who didn’t get in the draw for the evening events each night, Morrissey said. The gate will open at 11 a.m.

The main events start with a grand entry at 5:30 p.m. both evenings, the National Anthem by Flandreau high school students, mutton busting for kids and the rodeo starting at 6 p.m. with 12 contestants in each event. Participants from throughout the day will qualify for the event prizes. Each day is a separate rodeo. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the gate.

The rodeos will include bareback riding, calf roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, ladies’ breakaway, goat tying, senior men’s breakaway, team roping, barrel racing and bull riding. The events are expected to draw 300 contestants each day, Morrissey said.

In addition, the casino is planning for 500 to 1,000 spectators each day.

The casino hired Lazy 3S Rodeo Co. out of Pierre to run the rodeos which are sanctioned by the South Dakota Rodeo Association, the Minnesota Rodeo Association and the Northern Rodeo Cowboy Association of North Dakota.

The casino also hired a company to build the arena and stands. In addition, they will have a large display screen to show the action and replays. “It gives it a lot more than just a small-town rodeo.”

The rodeo grounds will have food vendors, merchandise vendors and two full-service bars. Outside food and drink is not allowed onto the grounds. “People just have to bring themselves and their friends and come enjoy. We’ll have everything else,” Morrissey said.

The events are expected to end by 9 p.m. each evening when live music will start inside the casino. The casino has booked Hicktown Mafia for Friday and Plan B for Saturday.

Morrissey said the rodeo crowds should benefit other businesses in the community, too. “We expect a lot the spectators will stay around.”

The casino will have all employees that it can working the two days of the rodeos, serving the larger than normal crowds and staffing the bars it will set up on the rodeo grounds, he said.

“We’ll have our entire staff out there,” he said. “It’s all-hands-on-deck for all of our staff.”

The casino started planning for the rodeo last July, the events will take place rain or shine.

Plans already call for a repeat performance for coming years. “Were pretty committed to doing it again,” Morrissey said

Organizers hope to get the crowds they expect and would like to see Flandreau Rodeo Days become more community run with the casino as a sponsor in the future, he said.

“There’s also the success in how the community perceives it. We’re really hopeful a lot of the community comes out,” he said.

Management of the Royal River Casino want to see a new Flandreau rodeo become a sustained community event.

But first, the focus is on getting the rodeo this Friday and Saturday to be a success for fans, performers and Flandreau.

“It’s exciting. We’re looking forward to it being a very successful event. We think it can draw a large crowd of people to Flandreau for the whole weekend, said Tim Morrissey, marketing director for the casino. “Not only will it be great for the casino but it will be great for the entire community.”

Flandreau Rodeo Days starts at noon Friday with slack events for participants who didn’t get in the draw for the evening events each night, Morrissey said. The gate will open at 11 a.m.

The main events start with a grand entry at 5:30 p.m. both evenings, the National Anthem by Flandreau high school students, mutton busting for kids and the rodeo starting at 6 p.m. with 12 contestants in each event. Participants from throughout the day will qualify for the event prizes. Each day is a separate rodeo. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the gate.

The rodeos will include bareback riding, calf roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, ladies’ breakaway, goat tying, senior men’s breakaway, team roping, barrel racing and bull riding. The events are expected to draw 300 contestants each day, Morrissey said.

In addition, the casino is planning for 500 to 1,000 spectators each day.

The casino hired Lazy 3S Rodeo Co. out of Pierre to run the rodeos which are sanctioned by the South Dakota Rodeo Association, the Minnesota Rodeo Association and the Northern Rodeo Cowboy Association of North Dakota.

The casino also hired a company to build the arena and stands. In addition, they will have a large display screen to show the action and replays. “It gives it a lot more than just a small-town rodeo.”

The rodeo grounds will have food vendors, merchandise vendors and two full-service bars. Outside food and drink is not allowed onto the grounds. “People just have to bring themselves and their friends and come enjoy. We’ll have everything else,” Morrissey said.

The events are expected to end by 9 p.m. each evening when live music will start inside the casino. The casino has booked Hicktown Mafia for Friday and Plan B for Saturday.

Morrissey said the rodeo crowds should benefit other businesses in the community, too. “We expect a lot the spectators will stay around.”

The casino will have all employees that it can working the two days of the rodeos, serving the larger than normal crowds and staffing the bars it will set up on the rodeo grounds, he said.

“We’ll have our entire staff out there,” he said. “It’s all-hands-on-deck for all of our staff.”

The casino started planning for the rodeo last July, the events will take place rain or shine.

Plans already call for a repeat performance for coming years. “Were pretty committed to doing it again,” Morrissey said

Organizers hope to get the crowds they expect and would like to see Flandreau Rodeo Days become more community run with the casino as a sponsor in the future, he said.

“There’s also the success in how the community perceives it. We’re really hopeful a lot of the community comes out,” he said.


Video News
More In Homepage