Last dance for Dixie’s Round-up Rodeo and Sunbowl?

Dixie Round-up Rodeo, St. George, Utah, Sept. 12, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – Horses, livestock, cowboys and crowds all come together this week for the 78th Annual St. George Lions Dixie Round-up Rodeo in the Dixie Sunbowl Arena. Sponsored by the St. George Lions Club, it is one of the largest and best-attended events held in St. George. It is a PRCA approved professional rodeo and is a staple of St. George Septembers, it all starts today.

Bull in waiting for the Dixie Round-up Rodeo, St. George, Utah, Sept. 12, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

For a few dirt-kicking Dixie days, the union between man, horse and the bowl will be as familiar as a well worn and oiled old saddle.  But this rodeo ought to carry a poignant strain as the future of the Sunbowl, the Rodeo’s longtime home, is uncertain. For some, the Dixie Roundup just won’t be the same outside the Sunbowl.

The Sunbowl is in need of costly renovations if it is to continue in use as it is; its use throughout the year is relatively limited and despite its historic presence, it is likely that its final sunset is on the horizon.

“(The Rodeo) sells out every night, and has done (so) for the last 10 or so years.” Lions Club member Karl Hutchings said. “If it  moves from the Sunbowl, I can just promise you there’s no way they will get seven or eight thousand people there again.”

If the possibility of the Rodeo relocating isn’t enough to do the Sunbowl in, the ever-expanding Dixie State College of Utah has had its sights on the location. It aims to displace surrounding entities in order to acquire more land for a larger campus.

Any way you look at it, the Sunbowl’s days are numbered, and it very well might slip away before members of the community realize what is happening. Although the decision is already well underway, and has a lot of momentum, community members can make their voices heard, or at least appreciate a St. George icon this weekend before it is gone for good.

It’s been said, “Feeling down? Saddle up.”

Or you can head on down to the Dixie Roundup.

Bulls and horses arrive for the Dixie Round-up Rodeo, St. George, Utah, Sept. 12, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

Event Details:

Dates and times: Sept. 13-15, 6-10 p.m. (Entertainment at 6 p.m., Rodeo at 8 p.m.)

Ticket Sales: Tickets are on sale for General Admission and Reserved Seating at the Lions building north of the Sunbowl each weekday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and at the Sunbowl for the rodeo beginning at 6 p.m. nightly.

Ticket Pricing:

• General Admission – Adult: $8.00

• General Admission – Children (11 and under): $5.00

• Reserved Seating: $12.00

More information and event highlights: St. George Lions rodeo website.

Dixie Round-up Rodeo, St. George, Utah, Sept. 12, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News


Joyce Kuzmanic contributed to this article.

Email: ccaldwell@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2012, all rights reserved.

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2 Comments

  • Tyler September 14, 2012 at 9:49 am

    I am surprised no one has commented on this yet! We can’t let this rodeo end! This is something that’s happened for the last two generations and it should continue…its sad that they’d want to move it..I think its stupid if they do but that’s just me. Please everyone let’s make our voices heard!!!

  • Clayton Hughes October 25, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    My family has been going there 40 + years it is a family tredition to ride a horse or go to the rodeo if they tear it down like mayor mcarther whats to my family will never go agine and I know about a thousand pelople that will never attend aging that is a 10000 dollor loss right there and I can promise there all family and extended family its sad it is heart breaking that there gunna tear it down

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