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Annual Collier County Rodeo going beyond the bulls at the fairgrounds this weekend

Collier County Rodeo
Posted at 6:58 AM, Apr 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-28 09:24:26-04

COLLIER CO., Fla. — A little part of the Old West is making its way to Southwest Florida.

The Annual Collier County Rodeo is coming to the fairgrounds this weekend. It's a different kind of sport, galloping its way to town.

"It’s a different sport," says Alan Frierson, a former cowboy. "Like I said, there’s nothing like it that’s for sure. I used to participate in rodeos all the time. I’ve been all over the country. Went to college rodeoing, paid for school, had a blast and made a lot of memories.”

But you’d better not think this is just all about the bulls…

"Last year I was a trick roper all year and then I had a buddy come to me and say, ‘You wanna be a clown for a living?’ and I said well why not?”

Kyle “Hashtag” Lamon, with his dog, are rodeo entertainers. A modern name for the rodeo clowns of yesterday.

"It’s not just about riding the bulls or the broncs, or the barrels or the roping- it’s more like building a family in a fun environment where people can bring their kids and have a good time," says Lamon. "That new modern look at it, it’s becoming a show also. Where people can come and have fun and enjoy the entertainment and really enjoy the sport for what it is as rodeo.”

And with any good performance… practice makes perfect.

"We’re only as good as we make ourselves, right?" Lamon said. "Everyday I’m constantly trying to figure out something new like a new way to talk or a new way to dance.”

Which includes having his own TikTok.

"Everybody’s a little different with being a rodeo entertainer or a rodeo clown. For myself, is about being myself so that’s where I have the most fun really.”

And whether that’s entertaining, or riding, at the end of the day it’s all about having fun.

“I think that’s part of the reason why we do it," says Frierson. "The adrenaline rush, the fun, it’s a rush. There’s nothing that can compare to nodding your head on a 2,000 pound bull.”

You can catch “Hashtag” as well as other entertainers at this weekend’s rodeo. Collier County fairground gates open at 5:30 p.m. and the rodeo starts at 7:30 p.m. You can find more information online right here.