Believe it! The USA’s Oldest Weekly Pro Rodeo is in New Jersey
If you watch the hot TV series "Yellowstone" starring Kevin Costner, you might easily thing that rodeo-ing and cowboy-ing are strictly western things.
Well, welcome to New Jersey, where we have the "oldest weekly professional rodeo in the United States."
That's the claim, anyway, made by Cowtown Cowboy Rodeo in Woodstown, New Jersey. According the rodeo's website, the rodeo began in 1929 in conjunction with the Salem County Fair.
The rodeo operates every Saturday night in the summer, and the 2023 season will kick off May 27th. The season will end at the end of September, with 8 events happening each week. From the website:
"Started back in 1929, Cowtown Rodeo has stood the test of time... remaining true to our traditions of the Old West and bringing each of you a taste of western ranching that is an integral part of American history. We are the longest running weekly professional rodeo in the USA and we hope you make plans to stop in and visit us in 2022 -- our 68th consecutive year!"
While Cowtown makes the claim of "longest running weekly professional rodeo", it ranks 10th on the list of the "10 Oldest Rodeos in the World." According to Oldest.org, Cowtown's 88 years in action is a few years behind the oldest rodeo. At 148 years, the Deer Trail Rodeo in Colorado is said to be the oldest overall.
Again, though, the weekly run for Cowtown is pretty impressive. Have you every been to the rodeo?