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Opening weekend set the tone for a busy Black Hills Stock Show and Rodeo

People from across the country made their way to Rapid City for a week’s worth of ag-based events. Despite the COVID pandemic, the 2021 stock show doesn’t seem to be taking any hits.
People from across the country made their way to Rapid City for a week’s worth of ag-based...
People from across the country made their way to Rapid City for a week’s worth of ag-based events. Despite the COVID pandemic, the 2021 stock show doesn’t seem to be taking any hits.(Miranda O'Bryan)
Published: Feb. 1, 2021 at 6:08 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - The Black Hills Stock Show and Rodeo kicked off last week and brought people from across the nation. Miranda O’Bryan went down to the Civic Center to see exactly how the first few days shaped up.

People from across the country made their way to Rapid City for a week’s worth of ag-based events. Despite the COVID pandemic, the 2021 stock show doesn’t seem to be taking any hits.

“This year was way up from traffic in the past, there’s several contributing factors I’m sure,” said Ron Jeffires, the Black Hills Stock Show and Rodeo general manager. “Part of it is we’re one of the only shows that’s still up and running, so we did draw some people from some other areas.”

Long-time vendor, Black Hills Embroidery said the start to this year’s stock show is one of the best they’ve seen, with foot traffic coming from all over, bringing brand new faces.

“It was definitely stronger than opening weekend last year, so it’s been very good,” said Tami Pfleger, Black Hills Embroidery owner. ”We’ve seen Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, we’ve seen all the regions come in. And first-time attendees were ready to go on vacation a little bit.”

After 21 years of coming to the stock show, another vendor wasn’t sure what to expect in 2021.

“Considering the year, we just didn’t know what to expect but very pleased with the opening weekend crowds and the interest in our product. I talked to a few other vendors too and seem to be pleased so that’s good, that’s good to see,” said Dan Erickson, a cattle handling equipment vendor. ”Usually the opening weekend seems like that’s the tone for the following weekend, it’ll be a good week.”

Jeffries said the Stock Show draws so many people in because of its multitude of events. One, the Truck Defender horse sale broke records this year, selling almost two million dollars’ worth of horses.

“Our previous record was about 1.2 million dollars in sales, this year, the total for the two-day sale was 1.899 million dollars in sales,” said Jeffries. ”Only one of the top 12 geldings was sold to a South Dakotan. They went to Florida, they went to Texas, they went to Oklahoma, Nebraska. We were drawing people from all over the country this year.”

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