Little Tykes Giddy Up at the Rodeo - NBC 7 San Diego

Little Tykes Giddy Up at the Rodeo

Young cowboys "gallop" around the arena

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Little Tykes Giddy Up at the Rodeo
    Kate Cunningham, Lakeside Rodeo
    Kids 5 years of age and under race around the barrel in a stick horse race at the Lakeside Rodeo.

    Lakeside Rodeo fans might love the bull riding but it gets some stiff competition from another race in the arena and the riders are under six years of age.

    "It's my absolute favorite thing," says Kate Cunningham who's volunteered there for 17 years.

    It's known as the stick horse race. It's just like a barrel race and it happens at all the intermissions at the rodeo that ends Sunday.

    Rodeo clown and bull fighter Kevin Higley instructs the kids to race around one barrel twice and then head back to the starting line.

    "It's organized chaos (that ) ensues when they 'gallop' on their trusty stick horses toward the one barrel, intent on being first back to the line and forgetting if its left or right side first!" says Cunningham.

    While a lot of rodeos have their mutton busters (that's when little tykes dawn helmets and ride in a sheep race) Cunningham says their horse stick race allows more kids to take place at one time. Sometimes there are 30-35 kids in the arena at one time.

    Every child gets a prize bag when they turn their steeds back in but traditionally the kids bring their own horse and dress up for the event too.