Cowboys of Color Rodeo Displays Diversity Among Riders

Fans celebrate rodeo diversity on Martin Luther King Jr. Day

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The Cowboys of Color Rodeo at Dickies Arena attracted first-time visitors like Precious Flowers of Lubbock.

“It’s my first rodeo,” Flowers said with a big grin on her face.

But there were also long-time attendees, like John Reed of Fort Worth.

“Oh, I’ve been coming to this rodeo since I was a little kid,” he said.

Fans of the Cowboys of Color Rodeo were excited to see the action on the arena floor.

“To see the horses, and the people and what they have on,” Flowers said.

But it’s more than just entertainment for the athletes participating. 

Arnold Laskey of Jones, Oklahoma has been riding more than 20 years.

“It takes time and dedication,” Laskey said. “Once you get to that practice pen, it ain’t all fun and games. It’s work, so got to have that mind set: be ready to work.”

Vince Sims
Inside Dickies Arena for the Cowboys of Color Rodeo

Barrel racer Brittany Amos said she had been on horses since she was a baby. For her, this is a way of life.

“The adrenaline,” Amos said. “The going fast. Just being around a thousand-pound beast that’s your partner that you work with every day. You ride with. It means a lot.”

The Cowboys of Color Rodeo highlights the top African American, Hispanic and Native American competitors. The riders know it’s important for them to be seen, especially by the little cowpokes.

“It gives them something to look up to like, 'Oh, she’s running barrels, I can do that too,'" Amos said. “She has hope or a dream that maybe she can maybe do this one day.”

Side Saddle riding team at Cowboys of Color Rodeo

“It lets everybody know, the world know, there are cowboys of color with talent,” Laskey said.

For Reed, watching this display of rodeo diversity on Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an example living King’s dream.

“It’s just a good time when folks can come together and forget about all the drama and come together in love,” Reed said. “That’s what Dr. King was about -- love and peace.”

More than 200 culturally diverse athletes participated in the Cowboys of Color Rodeo.

Arnold Laskey at the Cowboys of Color Rodeo

It’s part of the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo which continues through Feb. 8.

For more details on other activities happening click here.

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