Lions Club receives coveted Most Improved Rodeo award
LION'S CLUB — Members show the special award they won for the Most Improved Rodeo. From the left in front is Byron Grubb, Dan Majerus, past-president Jamey Byrnes, Joel Rouns and Tom Ophus. In the back are Dan Wilcox, Mark Leys, John McFarland, Jerry Jerome, Ray Stoetzel and Howard Bouma. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
   The Conrad Lions Club has received the prestigious Most Improved NRA Rodeo award for 2008.
   Like it says, the award comes for hard work at the rodeo grounds in making improvements to put on a better show for fans as well as making the arena better for the cowboys and cowgirls.
   At the facility itself, Lions members rebuilt roping boxes, made improvements to the pens behind the boxes and striping chute and catch pens for timed events.
   “This makes it much more user friendly for our contestants and the chute crew,” commented newly elected Lion president Joel Rouns.
   Other improvements were made in the announcer stand with new siding and windows; a new deck for the ambulance crew was added; chutes and arena fences were painted and made more attractive and new flag poles for the American and Canadian flags were installed.
   For the fans, the Lions Club obtained new bleachers from the CMR Fieldhouse and rearranged the old bleachers, giving more choices for seating .
   Rodeo fans can still opt out to sit on the hillside or use the new bleachers.
   A new ticket booth has been added, so now you can park your vehicle first and then purchase your ticket on the way to your seat.
   Fans will recall that the date for the Whoop-Up Rodeo has been changed to the second weekend in June, when hopefully the weather is a little warmer.
   This also makes it possible for cowboys and cowgirls to hit more than just one rodeo for that weekend.
Increased money, $1,000, was added for the rough stock, which helps draw more contestants, and $750 was added for the timed events. The Whoop-Up Rodeo also became co-approved with the Canadian Rodeo Association, which helps to draw more contestants from north of the border.
   In addition, a new sponsor program was initiated which generated more advertising to help pay for the added money and ground improvements.
   In other news out of the Lions Club, at their Monday meeting, Kenny Kronebusch was elected to be the Whoop-Up Parade Grand Marshall.
   There will be more information about Kronebusch in the I-O as the parade and rodeo draw near in the second weekend in June.
   An election of officers took place on Monday as well.
   J. Rouns was elected president; Mike Harding is the first VP; Dan Wilcox is the second VP; Tom Ophus is the secretary; John McFarland is the treasurer; Jerry Jerome is the Lion tamer and Lyle Orcutt is the tail twister.