RAPID CITY, S.D. — Coinciding with the Black Hills Stock Show and Rodeo was the popular High School Showcase Rodeo.
“This event’s been good for a long time I think, because it just shows how all the high school potential and what we do,” said senior participant Linkyn Petersek.
Produced by the Sutton Rodeo, the High School Showcase Rodeo has been coming to Rapid City since 2003. It’s a popular event — stands were filled with spectators excited to watch the up-and-coming athletes. Students who could participate were thrilled.
“It’s a big deal to the kids. It’s based on year end points of state finals the year before, and most of these kids have it figured out last year after state finals if they can come or not,” said Ann Sunderniann. “And they really like it, it’s the big show, it’s the announcer, it’s the music, it’s the clown act, and they really look forward to it.”
“I love it, because it’s a high intense event. And the people in it are amazing, the competition, they’re always building you up, and to me it’s just truly a blessing to be here competing in this event,” said Camri Elshere, a senior participant.
Devin Hunter, a sophomore who won first place in goat tying, said, “It actually means a lot, because I was a freshman when I qualified for this, but now I’m a sophomore now. So coming here for my first time and then going out and winning it means a lot. I really enjoy it, because I’m tired of quarantining all the time and being away from all of my friends and being able to see all of these people. “
Winning the competition also came with perks.
“Well, we also have college recruiters come to this event. Of course, we’re very lucky here in South Dakota to be able to showcase our kids for the college recruiters. We have wonderful prizes, some of the colleges, classic eight-line, Maynard Buckles, give excellent prizes to the kids as well,” Sunderniann added.
The annual Stock Show and Rodeo wraps up on Feb. 6.