Full-on rodeo will return to the Pioneer City Area this Labor Day.
At the annual Chamber of Commerce meeting and banquet Wednesday night, outgoing Palestine Chamber of Commerce President Marcus Deckard made it official that rodeo would be returning to Palestine.
After a couple of years presenting a bullriding/barrel racing event, the chamber has worked out a deal with the Professional Cowboy Rodeo Association to bring full rodeo back to Palestine. M.J.M. Barnes Rodeo will be the stock producer and promoter for this year's Labor Day weekend events. Barnes has been involved in rodeo since the early 1950s and has long wanted to promote rodeo in Palestine.
The rodeo will run Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights, with the usual activities being held over the holiday weekend.
Announcer Mike Mathis is scheduled to return, as is rodeo clown Rudy Burns. Deckard also said WPRA barrel racing will also be featured. Trick rider Jerry Allen Olson is also scheduled to perform.
At the banquet, directors Janice Fuller and Candace Mahoney filled in for long-time master of ceremonies Fred McNair, who was unable to attend. Recognition and thanks were given to the Palestine Development Association, Palestine Bicentennial Committee and Robinson Tourism Committee for their support of last years Labor Day celebration.
The chamber also recognized longtime member Donna Kent for her years of service and especially for stepping up last year to help with the Labor Day celebration with the Distinguished Chamber Member award.