BELLE FOURCHE, S.D. — The Black Hills Roundup is back in Belle Fourche for the 102nd year.
To start out the week, the Cowboys for Christ held it’s annual Cowboy Church Service.
Cowboy Church is just what it sounds like – a church service with a western flair.
Organizers tell us that in the last 30 years, faith has come to play an increasingly larger role in rodeo nationwide, so it’s special to have a service specifically for rodeo contestants and fans.
“Anybody that’s been to a rodeo, you know we kick off every single rodeo performance with a prayer. And you see cowboys and cowgirls always thank God after their run, or after their bronc or bull. And so to be able to share that with people is really special,” said Martina Loobey, Miss South Dakota.
Those who organize and attend believe is just another way to make the gospel inclusive to cowboy culture.
“It’s expressing the freedom of our country also, and just the inclusiveness of the gospel. Just to get ahead of it, and we pray for the safety of the contestants and the visitors and everything. But it’s just to kind of set a spiritual tone for the week,” said Fred Wilson, President of Cowboys for Christ.
While the focus for the day was on the Cowboy Church, contestants are more than excited for the actual start of the Roundup.
Attendance was high last year despite COVID, and the hope is that it will be just as high – if not higher – this year.