Oakdale elementary schools got into the rodeo spirit on April 8, embracing Oakdale’s western heritage by dressing and decorating in cowboy style in honor of the Oakdale Rodeo.
Oakdale Saddle Club sponsored the Rodeo Spirit Day with $50 prizes awarded to the class at each school that showed the most rodeo spirit to be spent as the teacher sees fit. Judges assigned points based on classroom decorations, the percentage of students dressed in cowboy clothes, and if the teacher dressed in cowboy clothes, too.
Award certificates were also given to one cowgirl and one cowboy with the most rodeo spirit from each elementary site, along with a $5 gift certificate for an ice cream. OSC donated a total of $250 to all four Oakdale Elementary Schools for the contest to get the kids into the rodeo spirit.
An example of some of the festivities included Sierra View parent and professional rodeo cowboy Mike George, who spoke to Linda Kraus’ second grade class that same day about competing in rodeos and roping. He also showed the students how to rope, using the dummy steer outside their classroom. He and his son Colby Wallace, a student in Kraus’ class, both roped the steer and Colby also demonstrated the butterfly rope trick for his classmates. Kraus reported that Colby competes in junior rodeo and has already won an All-Around Champion title.
Many of George’s photos, spurs, ropes, contestant numbers, chaps, bandanas, a set of horns, two prize saddles and numerous silver belt buckles won during his years on the rodeo circuit were on display in Kraus’ room, adding that special touch of rodeo décor.
George currently competes in two different roping events and has done bulldogging, also known as steer wrestling, in the past as well. He shared that he started out in junior rodeo and has been competing for about 30 years.
Due to their effort, Kraus’ second graders shared the “most spirited class” award at their school with Diane Noon’s kindergarten class. At Fair Oaks, Wendy Petroni’s fourth graders won the most spirited class award. The reigning Miss Rodeo Oakdale Gina Liberini also dropped in on a few spirited cowboys and cowgirls at the schools to hand out awards and pose for photos.