Dust off your cowboy hat because the rodeo is coming to town.
Pearl River Community College's rodeo team will be starting its season on Thursday through Saturday when they host the Ozark Region Rodeo.
The rodeo will be the first National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association event held in the Ozark Region and will be held at the James Lynn Cartlidge Multi-Purpose Center in Hattiesburg.
Third-year head coach Robby Shaw is excited to finally get the season underway and hopes to build off the team's success from last year.
"The rodeo we hosted last year went real well," Shaw said. "We're expecting anywhere from 150 to 250 contestants from all over the Ozark region."
Last year, PRCC had two students qualify for the college national finals.
Although sophomore standout Chase Graves — who was one of the Wildcats to compete in the finals a year ago — recently suffered an injury, the Poplarville native will still be looked on to provide leadership to the rest of the team.
"It's real helpful to have kids that have been there before because I know that we've got kids that are consistent and can show up all year long," Shaw said.
Rayne Royals (Purivs) is a name to know. Shaw called the freshman a "natural" when it comes to rodeo.
Rounding out the team is Emily Favre (Kiln), Nick Gonzales (Carriere), Tyler Holder (Lucedale), Zeak Shorter (Florence), Tyler Stewart (Brandon), Charlie Hillman (Florence), Anna Graham (Sandy Hook), Kaleigh Graham (Petal), JT Brown (Mendenhall), Adam Channell (Seminary), Caly Hayworth (Ponder, Texas) and Carli Hodges (Summerdale, Alabama).
Here's the following schedule for the season after the Ozark Region event:
Missouri Valley College, Marshall, Missouri, Sept. 20th-23rd
University of West Alabama, Livingston, Alabama, Sept. 27th-28th
Three River College, Sikeston, Missouri, Oct. 11th-13th
Sourthern Arkansas University, Magnolia, Arkansas, Nov. 1st-3rd
Murray State University, Murray, Kentucky, Nov. 15th-17th
ABOUT THE RODEO
The rodeo will begin at 7 p.m. each night. Admission is $10 for ages 10 and up, while ages 5-10 are $5.
The event will feature nine different competitions that include bareback riding, calf roping, break away roping, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle broke riding, barrel racing, goat tying and bull riding.
Rudy Burns will be the rodeo clown for the event.
Also in attendance will be children from the Homes of Hope Foundation that will be recognized at the event.