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July 8, 2024

Exceptional Rodeo gives youth with disabilities a hands-on rodeo experience

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Enjoy a community rodeo experience at the 2024 Douglas County Fair & Rodeo

There’s nothing quite like sharing in the excitement of a child experiencing a rodeo for the first time. You’re invited to enjoy those moments during one of two sessions of the Exceptional Rodeo at 12:15 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 28, at the 2024 Douglas County Fair & Rodeo as part of Disability Awareness Day.

Developmental Pathways (DP), celebrating 60 years of being an essential community-based support for individuals with disabilities, is partnering with Douglas County Fair & Rodeo and CSU’s Temple Grandin Equine Center to celebrate Disability Awareness Day on Sunday, July 28 from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

During this special day, the Douglas County Fair & Rodeo and DP will host two sessions of the Exceptional Rodeo, a unique experience for individuals with disabilities. Like a traditional rodeo, the event includes everything from roping and barrel racing with interactive props to riding a real mechanical bull and “Payday,” the hand-rocked bucking horse.

Contestants will try their hand at roping and riding, but the event is extra special because it allows participants to interact with real cowboys, cowgirls, and local rodeo queens who volunteer their time and attention.

Two Exceptional Rodeo sessions will be offered, and they will kick off with performances by the Stars & Stripes Drill Team. Additionally, a wheelchair-accessible horse-drawn carriage and miniature therapy horses will be on site.

Parents and caregivers of youths with disabilities can register their children online to participate. All families are welcome to attend the Exceptional Rodeo for free at the Outdoor Arena and watch from the grandstands.


The Award-Winning Douglas County Fair & Rodeo runs July 26 – Aug. 4 and is packed with family fun, food, and memory-making events. Visit the Douglas County Fair & Rodeo website for the full schedule.

Exceptional Rodeo on hand rocked fake horse

exceptional rodeo for kids with disabilities

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