By Kevin J. Sabo For the Advance
Rough-stock rodeo action returned to Halkirk in 2021.
After being unable to host the 2020 event due to the ongoing pandemic, the 2021 edition of the Halkirk Elks Bullarama made a triumphant return on Aug. 28.
The small community located 20-minutes west of Castor has played host to the event put on by the Halkirk Elks for 25 years and sees talented bull riders drawn from all over the world. The 2021 edition Bullarama featured riders originally from Mexico, Paraguay, and Australia, all of whom now call Alberta home.
The format for 2021 had the competitors taking part in two go-rounds, with the highest combined score winning top prize, a saddle custom made for the Bullarama. A cowboy from Edson, Tristan Manning, took the prize, being the only competitor in the field of 16 to have two scoring rides.
Northcott Rodeo, 5D Rodeo Bulls, Midnight Rodeo, Rocking Star Rodeo, Young Bucks, and Bart Thompson all supplied bulls for the event, all of which posed a challenge for the riders. Of 32 total rides, only five were completed, scoring points.
In addition to the bull riding action, Stettler’s Ladies of the Heartland performed to open the event, and again at intermission, dedicating their performance to those medical staff working on the frontlines of the pandemic.
During the intermission, the Castor-based Daring Divas Trick Riding team also performed. Adding humour to the entire event, rodeo clown Johnny D, long a staple of the Bullarama, added commentary to the evening.
After the bull riding part of the evening concluded, a dance was held on the Bullarama grounds, and fireworks kicked off around 10 p.m.
The Bullarama is the largest event of the year for the Halkirk Elks, and the 2021 edition managed to draw a crowd of over 500 people, which is five times the population of the village. Plans are already under way for the 26th edition of the event in 2022.