The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (Rodeo Houston) is one of the largest events globally and one of the annual highlights for the city of Houston. The event mixes the world’s best cowboys showing off their tricks and skills, NRG Center filled with all things “country” from 10-gallon cowboy hats to real life cows, and some of the leading musicians nationwide hitting the stage.
The astroturf in NRG Stadium was replaced with dirt and clay as cowboys competed in everything from team roping to steer wrestling. One of the most exciting but also scary moments occurred during the saddle bronc riding competition on March 15 when Ohio competitor Tyler Corrington was thrown off of his bucking horse into the rails, inciting gasps from the crowd. He walked away unscathed, but one of the big winners of that section, Layton Green, came all the way from Canada and will move on to the finals.
The competitions were followed by music headliner, Kid Rock. Legendary rodeo performances have included a diverse range of acts from Elvis Presley in 1970 to Beyonce in 2007. Kid Rock’s 2016 performance marked his first return to the rodeo stage since 2011-2012, and more than 66,000 fans eagerly awaited him.
The lights dimmed, and Rock came out looking rodeo-ready in a cowboy hat and sunglasses. At one point he showed off his DJ skills mixing on the turntables and simultaneously lighting a cigar, which sent the audience into a frenzy. Kid Rock delighted the crowd with favorites such as “Johnny Cash,” but his hit song “Picture” (originally recorded with Sheryl Crow) had fans singing along to every word.
Attendee Krista Wooten remarked, “Wow, I was up in nose bleed sections. I literally cried when he sang [Picture].”
Rock has sold more than 26 million albums, and in 2007, his single “All Summer Long” hit No. 1 in eight countries. He embodies the spirit of the rodeo; with influences ranging from rock to rap to country, his eclectic musical style attracted a mixed-age audience.
The rodeo has something for everyone from infants to the elderly. Polish up your boots, dust off your cowboy hat, and join in the fun. See you next year Rodeo Houston! For more information, visit www.rodeohouston.com.
Competition, concerts bring crowd to their feet at Rodeo Houston