“The bulls were the winners.”
That’s the quickest and most accurate synopsis of the seventh annual Flint Hills Bull Blowout.
Thirty-nine professional bucking bulls bucked off 38 cowboys mounting and attempting to make qualified rides on them at the bull riding event coordinated and presented by Kim Reyer and his family at the Strong City arena.
That’s nearly 98 percent buck off rate for the bulls presented by Jimmy Crowther’s New Frontier Rodeo Company complemented by a select handful of bulls born to buck from the Kim Reyer family’s Flint Hills Genetics breeding operation.
Exception to the bull winners’ percentage was Ty Boor of Medicine Lodge.
In actually, the professional bull rider was the big winner of the rank riding competition. Boor was the lone rider making a qualified ride, and he took home the winner’s check for $2,056.
Not bad wages for 8-seconds of work.
“Ty had a great ride on the tough bull called Swerve, Number 746, and marked 82 points. That score would have won many of the major rodeos and bull riding events around the country,” analyzed Reyer.
Moreover, it was a unique occurrence for Swerve to allow a qualifying-ride. This Strong City competition was only the second time anybody’s ever made the eight-second whistle on the rank bucker. He was ridden to a winning score at the North Central Kansas Rodeo in Concordia earlier this year
The Flint Hills Bull Blowout is much more than a bull riding competition attracting top professional riders from throughout the Midwest. It is a community function, with many special activities.
“We sure appreciate the opportunity to have the bull riding in the world renowned Flint Hills Rodeo Arena, made famous by the world champion rodeo Emmett Roberts family,” said Reyer, who is the general sponsor through his Reyer’s Country Store.
“Many other generous businesses throughout the Midwest assist with financial contributions and other services that are essential to have such an event. We truly thank them for their assistance in every way,” Reyer added.
Furthermore, numerous additional individuals and supporters come forward to provide gate and arena help as well as additional out behind the arena work to make the show go on.
“We estimated attendance to be nearly 1,500 people, one of the largest, if not the biggest crowd we’ve ever hosted,” Reyer said.
“The event went great, everything went very smooth, bigger crowd than last year, great weather, arena in great shape even after rains,” added his wife Lana Reyer.
Helping make that possible, Reyer appreciatively credited, was advance ticket sales by FFA chapters in the area.
A total of 24 bull riders, including two former champions of the Flint Hills Bull Blowout Derek Brumitt of Plainville and Cody Hunsperger of Yates Center, were entered in this year’s competition. Their draws in the bull riding this year bested their proven outstanding abilities
“Since there were no qualified rides in 24 outs, we drew 15 cowboys to get a try on another bull. Ty Boor made his winning ride on his second out of the evening,” Reyer informed.
The winner’s payback check included entry fee money and the $1,000 bonus incentive given by the sponsors.
A regular champion in Central Plains Rodeo Association sanctioned rodeos, Boor also received a trophy buckle to wear verifying his championship bull ride at Strong City. It was given by Brad Miller of Jim’s Cowboy Shop at Emporia.
While the evening kicked off with a Booster Club community athletics fundraiser barbecue, two special youth features attracted considerable excitement for the entrants as well as their family and the entire evening crowd.
More than 70 children 10 years and under were in the chicken scramble, and Reyer assured, contrary to some years when the chickens escaped, all were caught and back into their travel cage. “It’s a lot of fun,” Reyer reflected.
Thirty youngsters, six and under, crawled on, often with assistance, to compete in the Mutton Busting, actually attempting to ride the big ewes brought in by Brad Morgan. A crisp 10 dollar bill went to Lahna Passmore of Cottonwood Falls as the high scoring wooly rider.