History of Our Largest Fundraiser -- RODEO
The Okeechobee Cattlemens' rodeo involves a mixture of cattle wrangling and bull fighting that dates back to the sixteenth century conquistadors. Ranch-versus-ranch contests gradually sprang up, as bronco riding, bull riding, and roping contests appeared at race tracks, fairgrounds, and festivals of all kinds
Points are achieved for the top competitors in each of the more than 650 circuit rodeo events in 41 states sanctioned by PRCA throughout the year. The PRCA is committed to maintaining the most rigorous standards in the industry. It ensures that every PRCA-sanctioned event is managed with fairness and competence and that the livestock used is healthy and cared for to the highest standards.
The winner in each event at the DNCFR is the national circuit finals champion for that event. In addition to the eight individual event winners, there is also an overall champion titled the All-Around Cowboy. All eight winners receive the National Circuit Championship gold belt-buckle. Dodge has been the title sponsor of the NCFR since 1991.
The top 15 money winners in each PRCA discipline (including the top 15 "headers" and "heelers" in team roping) earn a trip to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, commonly called the National Finals or NFR, the world’s richest rodeo. The NFR is held in Las Vegas, Nevada, every December.
There is money to be made for the top cowboys in rodeo. For example, Trevor Brazile, the 2006 All-Around Cowboy world champion, became the youngest cowboy to surpass two million dollars in career earnings and the seventh overall. Since joining the PRCA in 1996, he had amassed $2,182,555 in winnings by the end of 2006. In that year alone, he won nearly $330,000. His specialties are tie-down roping, steer roping and team roping. Many other outstanding cowboys won nearly that much that year.
Although rodeo contestants have an opportunity to win big prizes when they advance to the top of their profession, most of them compete for the sheer love of the sport and its excitement. The thousands of people nationwide who flock to rodeos whenever they have a chance are glad they do.