Jul 26, 2010 6:49 PM by David Ortiviz
Time is running out on a deal to keep the National Little Britches Finals Rodeo in Pueblo. The annual event kicked off Monday attracting thousands from all over the country. However, the rodeo may be skipping town if the city doesn't fork over more money to keep them here. "We're in the process in negotiating with the community," said Kimber Solberg, Executive Director of the National Little Britches Rodeo Finals.
The rodeo's 6-year contract with Pueblo ends Saturday. The rodeo could move to another venue next year, unless the city agrees to a new sponsorship agreement. "We have asked that the entities put together a $100,000 package," said Solberg. That's more than twice what they get right now, but Solberg who runs the rodeo, says it's a small percentage of the city's pay-off. "We have a lot of family and friends come in because they can watch their kids compete for a world title," said Solberg.
Close to 850-contestants and their families from all over the U.S. filling up hotels and restaurants for the next week. Solberg says the economic impact for Pueblo is somewhere between two-and-a-half and $10 million dollars.
"We certainly hope something comes to us this week, so we can let our families know and the community know where they're headed next year for the national finals," said Solberg.
Representatives from other cities hoping to host the rodeo, will tour the event later in the week. As negotiations linger, in the arena the spotlight remains on these young contestants competing for scholarships and bragging rights.
You're invited to watch the finals they run July 26 through July 31. Performances are held twice a day at the Colorado State Fairgrounds. One is at 9 a.m., the other is at 6 p.m. Admission is $5.