Organizers pleased with last week’s turnout

Robert Smith rsmith@pawhuskajournalcapital.com
Shriners were a crowd-pleasing part of the mix Saturday, at the annual Cavalcade Rodeo parade in downtown Pawhuska. Crowds lined Kihekah Avenue and parts of Main Street to see the parade participants.

Cavalcade’s 72nd year is in the books, and it drew more than 1,500 contestants.

“All in all, it appeared we had a good, solid average year,” Cavalcade Chairman Jeff Bute said Monday, the day after the rodeo concluded for 2018.

There were 1,186 entries, 1,567 contestants and 117 participating clubs, Bute said. About 240 family groups camped at the rodeo last week, he said.

“We were a little slow getting people here,” Bute said, explaining it took a while for some of the campers to arrive, but by Thursday or Friday things had picked up nicely. The hot weather Thursday and Friday didn’t detract from participation, and the weather was beautiful for the finals on Sunday, Bute said.

Delaney Cottingim, 17, of Oologah, was chosen the new Cavalcade queen, Bute said. She was the winner in a field of 12 contestants for the 2018-19 crown. She represented the Cowpokes Roundup Club, which was organized in 1989 and has more than 100 members.

“That group of queens was, from top to bottom, probably one of the best sets of contestants we’ve had,” Bute said, commenting on the highly competitive environment from which Cottingim emerged as the victor. The young women who entered the contest this year “could probably go anywhere in the state and win any other title,” he said.

“It’s exciting when you can pull that kind of talent,” Bute said. He also reflected on the excellent representation that the reigning Cavalcade Queen for the 2018 rodeo, Emma Alexander, provided. Alexander, a student of political science and philosophy at Oklahoma State University, hopes to have a future in the political world.

The 4 Bar Round Up Club, from the Yale area, won recognition at the 72nd Cavalcade as the Best All Around Club. Bute said the competition was stiff, with the Owasso club finishing close behind 4 Bar for the title.

The Owasso club won for the Best Camp this year, he said.

Bute also gave thanks to the Pawhuska business community for its faithful backing of the annual amateur rodeo.

“Our support here in town just continues to get stronger,” Bute said.