Mick Hicks

1983 was a tough year for Reno’s LGBTQ+ community.

The AIDS epidemic had reached Nevada. And the Gay Rodeo was facing a stronger threat of violence than in years past. An article from the Reno Evening Gazette said that anonymous telephone calls to Reno’s three main television stations warned that snipers were poised to shoot attendees.

Despite threats on multiple fronts, the event was one of the few times that being openly gay was generally accepted in the Biggest Little City. 

I was one of three KUNR reporters who recently graduated from a clown class taught by the Reno Rodeo’s new barrelman and rodeo clown, John Harrison. I spent the class taking photos and laughing with--and at--my colleagues. The class consisted of learning how to put clown makeup on, what it’s like to be in a barrel in the arena, and what it takes to entertain a crowd.

Holly Hutchings

Kathleen Brannon is a beadwork artist living in Spanish Springs who set up shop at the Reno Rodeo's marketplace last week, which was home to about 100 vendors and artists. She talked with KUNR's Holly Hutchings about her craft and her business.

Reno Rodeo 100: Caring For A Hurt Calf

Jun 27, 2019
A man in a plaid shirt hold a mic as he tells the story of hurt calf during rodeo season.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series wherein people connected to the event have shared intimate, up-close tales from the rodeo during open mic events and as part of more in-depth interviews with rodeo documentarians. In this excerpt, one former rodeo director, Dr. Joseph Eberle, recalls a time when a hurt calf got some very special medical treatment.

Reno Rodeo 100: Rain In The Arena

Jun 26, 2019
A black and white image of one of the first years of the Reno Rodeo.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series commemorating the event’s 100th anniversary. This excerpt brings us attendees Harrie and Karl Baker, who describe how rodeo rides on, even when storms roll in. In this story, an undeterred barrel racer had to overcome not just heavy rains, but a surprise visit from a drunk spectator.

Reno Rodeo 100: 'Woman In Labor!'

Jun 24, 2019
Lucia Starbuck

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series commemorating the event’s 100th anniversary. In this excerpt, Julianna Waller recounts the story of her sister’s birth - and how it almost happened at the event one year. She shared her story from the rodeo grounds. 

Reno Rodeo 100: Guy Clifton On The First Rodeo

Jun 21, 2019
A man in a white cowboy hat speaks into a mic.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo kicked off this week for its 100th year. KUNR is covering the anniversary with several stories, including excerpts from a multimedia project called Reno Rodeo 100. For the project, locals have been sharing their memories of the rodeo during open mic nights. They include Guy Clifton, who has written a book about the event’s history. Today, he explains how the rodeo first began a century ago.

History Buff, Author & Rodeo Fan: Guy Clifton

Jun 18, 2019
A man in a black shirt, with black glasses and a grey goatee, stands in front of a large photo of a jumping horse.
Lucia Starbuck

Former journalist and current history buff Guy Clifton covered the Reno Rodeo for two decades and wrote a book on the event’s first 80 years. He’s teamed up with the Nevada Historical Society to showcase parts of the event’s history in a new exhibit. He spoke with KUNR’s Holly Hutchings about some of the unknown nuggets he’s discovered from years of research and reporting on this cultural staple.

Announcing Rodeo In Reno And Abroad For Decades

Apr 17, 2018
David Calvert

Niche Podcast highlights people with unique passions and hobbies. Bob Tallman and Wayne Brooks have been announcing rodeo for decades all across the U.S., including Reno, and talked with Niche producers Joey Lovato and David Calvert.

Gallery: A Night At The Reno Rodeo

Jun 23, 2016
Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy

The 10-day Reno Rodeo runs through Saturday, June 25. For a sampling of some of the events this year, we sent our new photo contributor Aishwarya Krishnamoorthy out on assignment earlier this week. 

The historic rodeo attracts more than 100,000 visitors from across the region and country. For more upcoming events, including bull riding, barrel racing and steer wrestling, check out their website