On Wednesday June 11, 2014 the Rodeo Round Up and Jason Hetland put together a “Meet and Greet” opportunity for the young kids and their families at the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis. Jason was able to organize a large group of professional rodeo cowboys and cowgirls to spend the morning making memories as one big family! Many top level rodeo athletes and personalities took time out of their busy summer rodeo schedule to attend this special event put on by the Rodeo Round Up and make sure to keep lasting memories in those being treated for numerous reasons. It was so refreshing to see all factions of the sport we all love come together, whether everyone gets along or not, not for themselves but for the patients of the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital of Minneapolis
The wonderful group of rodeo professionals that came together for the children of the Shriner’s Hospital
There are so many folks to thank that donated merchandise, time, livestock and many other things to make this event so memorable for everyone involved, both patients and their families and all those volunteers as well. The folks that participated in the event had a wide variety of events to choose from so they could take their mind’s off the pain and treatments these superstars are receiving. The kids got to choose what they wanted to partake in from things like pony rides, horse rides, mighty bucky bull rides, playing with puppies, talking and getting to know many different rodeo stars or even rolling around in a clown barrel.
One of the day’s SUPERSTARS enjoying a pony ride
The bullfighters rolling the clown barrel around with one of the kids
One of the Shriner’s kids learning how to rope … She beat our professional in a roping contest too!!
Later in the afternoon a select few had the honor of going inside the hospital and visiting those children who either just woke up from surgeries or were not in good enough shape to come enjoy all the festivities outside. The smiles on the kids faces when some of us walked into their hospital rooms was priceless. The rooms are situated with great views outside but left them able to see everything going on outside and to know that they were not forgotten just made their day. Along with all the great things these kids got to partake in Winner’s Rodeo Supply made sure the kids took something to remember this special day by. Ken Fitting graciously donated cowboy hats to each of the patients in attendance and Christina Rice and Kirsten Pike of Rice Bull Riding Company put together some great grab bags so each of them could take home a special treat as well. With all of that there were also many fantastic raffle items that we gave away throughout the day to those that were able to make it to this great event as well.
Some of our rodeo professionals visiting hospital rooms with special puppy guests!!
The event had another great highlight that I would like to talk a little bit about. The Rodeo Round Up’s friend and follower Scott Kojetin found out about this event being held right in his backyard and wanted to do something special as well. He was gracious enough to contact a very popular local country music band, Maiden Dixie, and Channing and Jon from the band came to play an hour long acoustical concert for all the patients of the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital. Not only did they perform a concert but invited several of the patients up to help them out during their show and made it that much more memorable. We all found out what great musicians these kids were when they grabbed the tambourine and stole the show!
Channing and Jon from the popular local country band Maiden Dixie
The Shriner kids had a chance to join in on the Maiden Dixie concert and play back up tambourine!!
Once again I would like to say a HUGE thank you to all those that put in their time, effort, resources and livestock to make this event such a great success. It was such a great event that the administrator of the hospital asked Jason and the Rodeo Round Up to come back again next year to make it even a bigger and better event by adding invitations to those families that are treated there to join us from around the region. We can not wait to make this event an annual tradition for the children of the Shriner’s Hospital in Minneapolis. I can not express the joy that all of us that helped at this event felt by seeing the kids smiling and laughing while enjoying learning about the greatest sport on earth, RODEO!! It was great to see all of the rodeo “family” come together from all across this great nation to make it such a huge success! We will see you again next year and once again I want to thank each and every one of you for your support in putting this event together!