For the first time ever, Sidney will be home to the Sidney Battle with the Bulls, a stop on the Extreme Bullriding Tour, on Aug. 28 and Aug. 29.
Gold Buckle Productions, LLC, a group of nine area residents, many with their own rodeo experience, is putting the event on. They said the event has been successful in Nebraska City, Nebraska, where it will be held for the sixth year in mid-September.
Bringing the event to Rodeo Town, USA was a natural fit and will be a welcome addition to local attractions and events.
According to two of the organizers, Tony Moyer and Aaron Loewe, there are usually about 40 riders to compete each night, and they will ride both nights. Riders receive points based on their performance, and their final scores will affect their standings in the Extreme Bullriding Tour. Finals for the tour take place in Nebraska City Sept. 18 and Sept. 19.
The event will include bullriding the first half of the night, with an intermission show by the Two County Dusters, followed by bullfighting. This bullfighting is American freestyle, modeled on the work of the rodeo clowns who distract bulls to save the cowboys. Bullfighters step into the arena with the bull for about a one minute battle and receive points for style, control and difficulty.
Just like in bullriding, the bullfighting contestants need a bull that is willing to stay engaged and put on a good show, too. Bulls for this event are provided by local contractor Shad Smith’s Double S Bull Company, which also provides bulls for the Sidney Rodeo.
After the night’s events, live music will be provided by Josh Heard on Friday night and D.J. Erkenbrack on Saturday night. There will be food vendors available throughout the evening, with concessions inside the gates and vendors outside. A big screen will be in place in the arena for instant replays and to advertise the sponsors. A television in the beer garden will show live action so thirsty attendees won’t miss anything while going for a drink, organizers said.
Moyer and Loewe said they will be bringing in an arena and chutes to face the south grandstands, bucking the bulls toward the audience. This will ensure that everyone will have a great view of the action.
The event will abide by any COVID-19 restrictions in place at the time of the show, but Loewe and Moyer didn’t expect social distancing to be a problem, and said there would be “no bad seats in the house.”
Moyer and Loewe were thankful to the event’s biggest sponsors, Ames Construction and 1st Class Heating & Plumbing, for their support in this new Sidney event. Additional sponsorships are still available, and anyone interested in a package should contact Tony Moyer at 402-209-3040 or Aaron Loewe at 402-615-1099.
Tickets went on sale last week on the Battle with the Bulls website and Facebook page, and are $15 each, with box seats available for purchase along the south fence directly facing the chutes for $20 each. This is a covered grandstand, so the event will take place rain or shine. Gates will open each night a 5 p.m., and the bucking starts at 7 p.m.
Parking will be north of the water tower until that space is full, then across the road. There is no charge for parking, and there will be a utility vehicle on hand to ferry event-goers to the arena from their cars, and back, as needed.