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High school rodeo could return to Pahrump

Rodeos might be returning to Pahrump Valley High.

Buddy Krebs, a former 1999 Trojans rodeo bull rider, just announced his intention of bringing high school rodeos back to Pahrump. High school rodeo was part of rural town life here until 2009.

And if you talk to the rodeo fans, they were highly competitive back in the day and fun to watch. Some even say they were more fun to watch than professional rodeo because the fans had more of a connection to the contestants.

According to the high school, the team disbanded from lack of members. Krebs believes the time is right to bring back the high school rodeos.

“I really was surprised with the support the school had for this,” Krebs said. “I recently spoke to the principal (Chris Brockman) and he said he would support this. I have a daughter that barrel races, Mia, and she wants to be on the team.”

But getting school support for this is not the big problem.

Crystal Romans, a former resident of Pahrump, had tried bringing the high school rodeo team back about two years ago and said she couldn’t get enough kids. In all her efforts, she only could get four kids.

“The hardest part about doing this is getting the kids to join,” Krebs said. “I think I have at least 10 kids and I am looking for more.”

Mia Krebs believes her father is on the right track. She says she knows of at least seven who want to join.

“I do know a lot of people who are interested and I think with the news going around, that we will get more,” she said. “I have been talking to a lot of people about it.”

Mia Krebs knows what it takes to ride for a team, she did it when the family lived in Winnemucca.

The number of participants fluctuated during the years Pahrump had a team from 10-16 kids.

Kathy Gonzales, the secretary for the Nevada High School Rodeo Association, said if Pahrump can get all the paperwork in by the time the schedule is made for next year in May then the club can get on the schedule for next year and can compete.

“The kids need to submit letters to our board, saying who the director of their team will be,” she said. “Then they need to pay the dues ($400 for the team) and they are good.”

She said another thing that will help with the membership in the rodeo club is a combined junior high and high school together.

Rodeo is still big in Northern Nevada according to the sports editor for the Humboldt Sun, Tony Erquiaga.

“The Humboldt County group is usually one of the largest in the state,” he said. “Between junior high and high school, I would say it’s around 25-30 kids on the team for this group.”

There will be an informational meeting on Jan. 11 at 6 p.m. at the McCullough Arena to discuss the team further.

Krebs said the team will have to be approved by the Nevada High School Rodeo Association.

“The kids will have to write letters to the association asking to be reinstated,” he said. “Once we have their approval. At first, it will be hard, but I am certain once the kids see the other kids having a great time we will get more.”

Since the Nevada Interscholastic Athletic Association, the governing body of high school sports, does not sanction rodeo as a sport, this team will be a club, said Larry Goins, Trojans athletic director.

“When I was here before, they were able to earn athletic letters and recognition,” Goins said. “They would be under any PVHS and Nye County School District guidelines.”

Club members will be insured through an association. Shawna Krebs, Buddy Kreb’s wife, said insurance for each team member comes from the National High School Rodeo Association.

Shawna Krebs still enjoys barrel races and will be supporting the team by helping with the stock and helping organize the Pahrump High School rodeo.

“I was on the Cheyenne High School rodeo team in Las Vegas,” she said. “I have never organized a rodeo before, so I am sure it will be a learning experience.”

Then there are travel costs

People who have done the high school rodeo circuit on their own had to deal with the costs of boarding, gas and basic travel expenses all on their own.

Krebs admitted that having a high school rodeo is expensive.

“With a team, we can lower the cost by sharing in the driving, and therefore parents are not driving all the time,” he said.

What about putting on the Pahrump High School rodeo?

Krebs knows that’s expensive too.

“We can get bulls from local contractors, but other stock has to be found,” Krebs said. “Stock will cost money.”

Krebs is looking at the cost of putting on a high school rodeo to be anywhere from $8,000 to $20,000.

Gonzales agreed and said the majority of the cost of the rodeo is stock fees.

“The kids will make money though from fees from other schools coming to the rodeo,” Gonzales said. “High school rodeos charge $20 to enter for each day and they get to keep $15 of that fee with the rest going to the state association.”

Dustin Tibbits is a former PVHS rodeo team member and said he supports what Krebs is doing. Tibbits said he would be one source for bulls for the rodeo and said that he once rode bulls for the high school rodeo in Pahrump. He said the cost is probably closer to the $8,000 number for stock.

Gonzales believes the number to be around $8,500.

“It really all depends on how much cattle is needed,” Tibbits said. “There is no cost for the barrel racing-type events.”

Krebs said next to getting the kids to come out, that finding the sponsors will be the next hardest thing to do.

“We have to get sponsors,” he said. “But I know we will get support from lots of businesses. The high school rodeo is a good event and attracts people from all over the state and when they come, they have to stay somewhere, and eat.”

Lloyd Peugh of Shelter insurance is a businessman who believes in high school rodeo.

“I don’t think he will have problem finding sponsors because it is a good event,” Peugh said. “This event will bring people to the town. And when it was here, people sponsored it to support the kids. As a Pahrump businessman, I will support it.”

Ray Cortez is another supporter. Cortez was on the Pahrump team and rode bulls with Krebs. Cortez finished third in the state and 21st at the nationals.

“I am going to help get the kids involved in this,” Cortez said.

Krebs also talked about doing car washes and other events to lower the cost of the rodeo.

Contact sports reporter Vern Hee at vhee@pvtimes.com

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