Suwannee Democrat


April 25, 2006

Suwannee County now has a rodeo team

Every year high school rodeo kids from Suwannee County compete for points and to qualify for the National High School Rodeo. Every year each kid that qualifies struggles on his or her own to raise the necessary money for the trip to the finals. This year will be different. Local rodeo mom Rhonda Johnson has helped a group of local kids from Suwannee County, including Branford, to form the Suwannee County Rodeo Team.

This team of kids are home-schooled senior Wyatt Sasser, SHS junior Ashley Mills, SHS sophomore Justin Johnson, SHS freshman Josh Skeen, BHS senior Rance Brown, BHS senior Tyler Byrd and BHS freshman Bradley Bullock.

Sasser has competed at the National High School Rodeo before. He competes in the rough stock events riding bulls, bareback broncs and saddle broncs.

Mills competes in break-away roping and team roping. She is also the Florida High School Rodeo Association 2005-06 secretary.

Johnson competes in team roping and tie-down calf roping. He is the 2005-06 Florida High School Rodeo vice president as well as the student team roping director.

Skeen is a bullrider.

Brown and Byrd are both team ropers.

Bullock competes in tie-down calf roping and team roping.

The Florida High School Rodeo finals are coming up on June 7-9 in Kissimmee. This is followed by the International Finals Youth Rodeo in Shawnee, OK. The National High School Rodeo Finals are held two weeks in July. This year the national rodeo is in Springfield, Ill.

The Suwannee County Rodeo Team will hold fund-raisers as a group to help finance the trip to these away rodeos for the members that qualify to ride in them. Currently the team is $2 donation selling tickets for a chance to win a $300 Wal-Mart gift card. If you would like to help these kids live their dreams contact Jay Johnson at 386-362-6222.

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