Hundreds of thousands to visit National Western Stock Show in Denver

For the uninitiated, the stock show is one of the largest agriculture events in the country attracting more than 600,000 attendees annually.

A parade to kick off the National Western Stock Show makes it's way down Denver (Courtesy of the National Western Stock Show)
The 2017 National Western Stock Show kicks off Saturday in Denver. (Courtesy of the National Western Stock Show)
The 2017 National Western Stock Show kicks off Saturday in Denver. (Courtesy of the National Western Stock Show)

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to ride into Denver this month for the 111th annual National Western Stock Show.

The show includes a rodeo, horse show and other events that highlight Colorado’s expansive agriculture culture. The 2017 National Western Stock Show runs from 9 a.m. Saturday through Jan. 22.

“There’s so much to do here. There’s about 50 events a day and most them you can attend with just your grounds admission ticket,” said Paul Andrew, Stock Show president and CEO.

Andrew said there’s something for everybody at the show from a miniature donkey and piglets in the animal nursery to giant ribs and bratwurst from food vendors.

For the uninitiated, the stock show is one of the largest agriculture events in the country attracting more than 600,000 attendees annually and generating an estimated $115 million per year — $6 million of which is kicked directly into the coffers of state and local governments, according to The Western Stock Show Association.

The National Western Stock Show is “the Super Bowl of livestock shows,” Andrew said. “You can see a world class rodeo no matter what day you’re here.”

The show usually kicks off with a parade of cattle, horseback riders and tractors rolling through downtown Denver. But grand marshall — and Broncos’ mascot — Thunder and his companions were stabled Tuesday when the association canceled the 2017 parade due to concerns about the weather and animal safety.

Events expected to go on include the Xtreme Dogs presented by PetSmart, the Coors Western Art Exhibit & Sale, Mexican Rodeo Extravaganza, professional bull Riding performances, Wild West shows, the Citizen of the West banquet and more.  A full schedule of events can be found here.

Tickets to get in range from $10-$20 for adults and kids 12 and older and $2-$3 for kids 3 to 11. Access to the Mexican Rodeo Extravaganza, Pro Rodeo and other shows might require additional tickets.

This year the association is recognizing Colorado billionaire John Malone with the Citizen of the West award for exemplifying “the spirit and determination of a western pioneer.”

“In 2011, John Malone became the largest individual private landowner in the United States. He owns and oversees many successful cattle ranches in the West and timber operations in the Northeast.  Moreover, John is a strong advocate for our western way of life and values,” the association said in a release when the award was announced in September.

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Adrian D. Garcia

Author: Adrian D. Garcia

Adrian D. Garcia is on business and trends for Denverite, serves as treasurer for the Colorado chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and on the board of the Denver Press Club. He can be reached at agarcia@denverite.com.