What do all sports have in common? The answer is the beginning. Every sport begins the same way: competitors from all walks of life come to compete for a grand prize, each participant wondering if they have what it takes to claim it. The prize itself is usually a shiny accolade which states that the recipient is the master of a particular game. For baseball it is a World Series ring given to the players of the best team, in Hockey it is a large trophy called the Stanley Cup which is awarded to the team as a whole and in the rodeo world it is a shiny belt buckle given to the best competitor in one or more event. On Sunday June 2, 2013 the Free Range Cowboy Church Rodeo Association held an awards dinner, where participants in the Spring Rodeo Series were rewarded for their effort.

The Spring Rodeo Series is the second series that the FRCCRA has held (the first was the fall series which was held in late 2012) according to Kirby Vaughn, the senior pastor of the Free Range Cowboy Fellowship in Greenwood. "This is a great opportunity for us and we love to do it. The reason we do it is for the kids and we feel fortunate to get to help and make this happen for them" said Pastor Vaughn.

The awards dinner began around six in the evening at the Sebastian County Fairgrounds. Members were given the chance to socialize, and the kids were able to play in the arena before a meal of chicken, sausage and steak was served. After dinner, the awards were handed out. The big winners of the evening were Dalton Carter, Bre Dunn and Anna Pratt. Bre won a buckle for three events and Anna and Dalton earned buckles for four events.

Another top contender for the evening was Brian Scamardo. Brian won the buckle for the Senior Bull Riding event despite being unable to compete for the last few weeks of the series due to injury, said Becky Speer, the owner of Kickin’ Up Dirt Photography, who took pictures during the FRCCRA Spring Series as well as the awards dinner. Brian had earned enough points to win the event without having to ride the last few weeks. This is nothing new for Brian, who placed fifth in the National Little Britches Rodeo Association last year according to Kim Dodson, Brian’s cousin. "He went to the finals at last year and placed fifth. He is fifth in the [nation] in Jr. Rodeo for bull riding." Mrs. Dodson said.

While the FRCCRA is not planning on hosting a summer series, many of the participants plan to compete in other rodeos over the summer. "I’m going to try to do as many rodeos as I can because I just started out" said Kaitie Rundell, who won a buckle for Senior Goats. Kasey Hodge, who won second place in Jr. Division Calf Roping and third place in Jr. Poles will compete in the National Little Britches Rodeo Association. "I’m going to Pueblo, Colorado for the finals" said Kasey.

Of course one thing that everyone will look forward to is the Fall Rodeo Series. So what will be in store for the participants this fall? "It’ll be all of the events we had now and we might add a couple more" said Pastor Vaughn. The minister also said that he would like to start the series in late September. As for the current participants many have said that they would like to return to the fall series. For now the participants have fond memories, new rodeos to compete in and even some bragging rights to get them through the next few months.

Below is a complete list of the events and winners.

Mutton Bustin’

1. Prairie Vaughn

2. Brody Koch

3. Klancy Hodge

Little Wrangler Poles

1. Callie Tibbs

2. Dalton Carter

3. Dallas Fuller

Ribbon Goats

1. Dalton Carter

2. Callie Tibbs

3. Klancy Hodge

Little Wrangler Barrels

1. Dalton Carter

2. Callie Tibbs

3. Prairie Vaughn

Jr. Calf Riding

1. Dalton Carter

2. Kaleb Hamby

3. Justice Randolph

Peewee Poles

1. Anna Pratt

2. Abby Turner

3. Rain Vaughn

Peewee Goats

1. Anna Pratt

2. Tybo Watson

Peewee Barrels

1. Anna Pratt

2. Tybo Watson

Peewee Breakaway Calf Roping

1. Anna Pratt

2. Zane Lopez

Jr. Division Calf Riding

1. James Hill

2. Kasey Hodge

3. Peyton Oliver

Goat Tying

1. Bre Dunn

2. Shada Robertson

3. Wes Sutherland

Jr. Barrels

1. Bre Dunn

2. Wes Sutherland

Jr. Breakaway Ropers

1. Levi Pettigrew

2. Wes Sutherland

3. Kasey Hodge

Team Roping


1. Colton Hyde

2. Levi Pettigrew

3. Ethan Buttery


1. Brayden Cox

2. Jeff White

3. Tanner Womack

Goat Milking

1. Prairie Vaughn/Rain Vaughn/Dalton Carter

2. Kaleb Hamby/Lane Williams/Tybo Watson

Bull Riding

1. Brian Scamardo

2. Will Baggett

3. Caleb Hill

Senior Poles

1. Macayla Womack

2. Kaitie Rundell

3. Macy Morris

Senior Goats

1. Kaitie Rundell

Senior Barrels

1. Macayla Womack

2. Kaitie Rundell

3. Amber Cunningham

Senior Breakaway Ropers

1. Brayden Cox

2. Colton Hyde

3. Macayla Womack