Westerner Park is putting the final touches on preparations for Red Deer’s first Canadian Finals Rodeo — a mere five weeks away.
“We have a CFR committee that is now meeting every other week to go through and plan out the smallest details right down to where the garbage cans are placed. I’m extremely confident of the show that Westerner Park and the chamber are going to bring to the Centrium,” said interim Westerner CEO Bradley Williams on Monday.
“We have a solid team, a very effective team, that’s bringing all the small pieces and co-ordinating the efforts of different areas, to put this show on.”
Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce and Westerner Park are jointly hosting the CFR 45 which runs Oct. 30 to Nov. 4.
He said the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association is responsible for running the rodeo events that include bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, barrel racing and bull riding.
“We run everything outside of the dirt.”
Williams said temporary seating in the Centrium will be added to accommodate about 8,000 people, up from 6,600, but the new concession and relaxation area on the east side of Centrium will mean about 60 fewer seats.
An outside service has been contracted to provide the extra seats because the Centrium doesn’t need them for a lot of its events, he said.
Temporary stalling for horses, that will be mostly covered, will also be set up behind the east side of the Centrium, in addition to corrals.
“There’s lots of steel being brought in to provide corralling and pathways for the animals to get from the outside to the inside. Animal safety is paramount for Westerner Park as well as for the cowboys. Those animals are their livelihood and extremely important that they are taken are of.”
The CFR is expected to bring $20-30 million into Red Deer and the region annually.