The annual Ninilchik Rodeo, held every July Fourth weekend, celebrated 60 years this past weekend under blue skies and soaring temperatures at the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds.
Kicking off Friday, this year’s rodeo was free to enter and focused on a theme of “rooted in history.”
From barrel races to bull calf riding, the rodeo served up a dose of traditional horsemanship and other rodeo staples.
Rodeo organizers created a break in the action on Saturday to hold a session on the history of the Ninilchik Rodeo, telling stories of its creators and how it got to the present day.
While celebrating its past, the rodeo also continued to reinvent itself with a brand new event this year — horse racing on the beach in Ninilchik.
Other events held throughout the weekend included a bull chariot ride, saddle races, shovel races, a calf scramble for kids, bronc riding, cowboy Olympics, calf riding and a barbecue.
Ninilchik Rodeo results
Results show the top competitors in each category.
Senior Barrel Races — 1. Teresa Bitterich 2. Bridgette Gibson 3. Katy Jones
Senior Pole Bending — 1. Shelby Pawliski 2. Teresa Bitterich 3. Katy Jones
Senior Keyhole — 1. Bridgette Gibson 2. Katy Jones 3. Liz Dubbe
Barrel Races, ages 11-16 — 1. Mackenzie Betts 2. Corin Smith 3. Sophie Tapley 4. Breanna Butchart
Pole Bending, ages 11-16 — 1. Mercedes Tapley 2. Madelyn Barkman 3. Corin Smith 4. Alexa Richards
Keyhole, ages 11-16 — 1. Corin Smith 2. Madelyn Barkman 3. Destini Kitson 4. Jade Campbell
Boot Race — 1. Jade Campbell 2. Laramie Gibson 3. Alexa Richards
Saddle Race, Saturday — 1. Jade Campbell 2. Alexa Richards 3. Breanna Butchart
Saddle Race, Sunday – 1. Liz Dubbe 2. Jade Campbell 3. Alexa Richards
Barrel Races ages 10 and under – 1. Margo Shanahan 2. Loralie Kinney 3. Colten Martin
Pole Bending ages 10 and under — 1. Zephen Jones 2. Margo Shanahan 3. Loralie Kinney
Keyhole ages 10 and under — 1. Leila Fry 2. Loralie Kinney 3. Abeni Jones
Hide Race — 1. Loralie Kinney 2. Colten Martin 3. Aebni Jones
Junior Bull Riding — 1. Alexa Richards 2. Laramie Gibson 3. Cadence Campbell
Rescue Race — 1. Laramie and Bridgette Gibson 2. Corin Smith and Sabrina Wiles 3. Aubry Wold and Janae Nunley
Calf Riding – 1. Zephen Jones 2. Abeni Jones
Ninilchik Beach Horse Race Grand Champion — Cadence Campbell
2020 Ninilchik Rodeo All Around Cowboys and Girls — Senior, Bridgette Gibson; 11-16 age range, Laramie Gibson and Corin Smith; and 0-10 age range, Zephen Jones and Loralie Kinney