Mini Rodeo thrills special needs children

Ruby Robbins rounds a barrel

BRAWLEY – The 26th Annual Cattle Call Mini Rodeo continues to entertain special needs children in the Imperial Valley, which arrive in buses bright and early on their special day.

The Mini Rodeo is held for those children that are disabled or who may have special needs and have a hard time negotiating the large crowds at the official Cattle Call Rodeo. Without the effort of local cowboys and cowgirls, these kids may not have the opportunity to see a rodeo.

The Mini Rodeo is not open to the public.

The Mini Rodeo has competitive events just like a real rodeo, only on a smaller scale, a shorter time frame, and a few twists. Some of the events at this year’s rodeo were pole bending, team roping, barrels, gunny sack race, and the hide race.

The more than 60 kids participating in the show made up the contestants and rodeo clowns, all volunteer students from around the Valley.

Trick roper Alfredo Ruiz dazzled the crowd with his roping skills while standing atop his horse.

The Cattle Call Mini Rodeo Committee consists of Julie Reeves as Chairperson, Cheryl Foster, Brett Leavitt, Lauren Hutchinson, Patti Wilson, Ashley Taylor, and Joanie Moore.

The Brawley Union High School Rodeo Club also played a major role.

Julie Reeves has been involved with the Mini Rodeo for 22 years. Her organizational skills and hard work produce a quality rodeo enjoyed by all. Reeves and her family also participate in the Cattle Call Rodeo in the team penning competition, one of the crowds’ favorite events.

“We couldn’t do this without the help of all the volunteers and generous sponsors,” said Reeves. “We also want to thank the Naval Air Facility who sent a crew to assist the children and those in wheelchairs into the stands.”

Contestants for the events included Danielle Standiford, Cailee Roper, Bayleigh Nelson, Mishaela Sampson, Lexi Van Der Linden, Victoria Wysoki, Alex Baran, Sarah Grizzle, Molly Pole, Ruby Robbins, Cole Leavitt, Chloe Roper, Chelsey Roper, Carli Rose, Maddie Colace, Rhett Smelser, Smith Hilfiker, Spencer Hilfiker, Cade Roper, and Trenton Blackstone.

Sponsors for the Mini Rodeo included Cal Energy, Jack in the Box, Dr. Glen Sorot, Farm Aviation, Tra and Kari Roper, SELPA, Friends of David Rutherford and Karen Reed, IV Expo, and Goldcross Ambulance.

The 2014 58th Annual Cattle Call Rodeo is November 8th and 9th.



  1. It was advertised and reported that the Mini Rodeo is open to the public by numerous outlets. The Mini Rodeo is only for special needs children. This keeps the facility less crowded for the movement of the special needs kids in and out. All are welcome to the regular Cattle Call Rodeo.

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