Friday night, spectators can watch kids and adults ride around barrels and poles on ATVs and dirt bikes in the annual ATV Rodeo.
Starting at 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 10 in the arena, the Rodeo is open to anyone 4 years and older. The only requirements to participate are that you have an ATV or dirt bike, a helmet, boots, and “hopefully you know what you’re doing,” fair manager Tina Andersen said with a laugh.
There are four events participants can sign up for: barrel racing, pole bending — which is where the rider has to weave in and out of poles that are sticking out of the ground — key hole racing — where the rider must stay inside a keyhole shape while going around a barrel — the panty hose race and the granny pantie races.
Don’t know what those races entail? Go to the rodeo and see for yourself (hint: They involve riders putting on a pair of underwear over their riding uniforms).
The ATV Rodeo is divided into five different age groups: the pee-wees, 8 and younger; youth, 9-13; pre-adult, 14-17; adult, 18-40; seniors, 41 and older. Each event costs $5 to enter. Registration is open now, or you can register the day of from 4 to 6 p.m.
Cash prizes are handed out, as well as trophies for the kids and certificates for adults.
To pre-register: participants can go to www.co.polk.or.us/fair and click on the “entry forms” tab. Events are limited to 20 participants, and by pre-registering, you ensured a place on the lineup. To drop entry forms off, mail them to P.O. Box 29 Rickreall, OR 97371, or drop them off at the main fair office.
Andersen said the rodeo was started after she and her husband went to the Columbia County fair.
“We thought it was the funniest thing we saw,” she said. “My husband said, ‘we could do that.’”
The ATV Rodeo is a popular event on Friday night.
“We have people come down from Washington to participate,” Andersen said.
The event is free with the cost of fair admission.