WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. - The Navajo Nation Youth Celebration and Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) Pro Rodeo takes place at the Navajo Nation fairgrounds in Window Rock July 3-6 with top notch cowboys and cowgirls taking center stage.
Navajo Nation Fair Manager Genevieve Tshouhlarkis said everyone is welcome. With evening performances, a carnival, youth activities, fireworks and the rodeo there is something for everyone to enjoy.
"We are very honored to be the only tribe to host a professional rodeo in Indian county," Tshuhlarkis said.
The Navajo Nation will host a variety of events for the family with a special emphasis on the youth. The theme of this year's fair is "Reach for Excellence."
Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation Department Manager Martin L. Begaye said everyone is encouraged to attend the Fourth of July celebration in the Navajo Nation capital.
"This is the time of year when kids are out of school and it provides a great opportunity to spend quality time with our families," Begaye said. "We understand that many people cannot afford to go on vacation and travel afar so that is why we're planning a variety of events for the youth here on our reservation."
He added that there are also events that are planned for the public at large.
"Window Rock is a great venue to spend your Fourth of July weekend," Begaye said.
Tsouhlarkis said junior rodeo contestants will vie for $600 of added money per each division.
"The youth are what make our Fourth of July celebration a fun-filled event for everyone," she said. "They are the ones who add laughter and excitement to our lives."
The Open Indian Junior Rodeo takes place July 6 beginning at 8 a.m. at the Navajo Nation Fairgrounds. It will include midget, peewee, junior, Sr. girls and Sr. boys division. Entries for the junior rodeo close on June 25. Walk-ins for the junior rodeo take place on June 27. Entry forms are available at www.navajonationfair.com or by calling (928) 871-6478 or (505) 870-0062.
About 30 young barrel racers will also have an opportunity to enter the Women's Professional Rodeo Association junior barrel racing competition and run with the pros during the PRCA Pro Rodeo. The entry fee is $50 and the administrative fee is $15. Entries will close on June 25. More information is available by calling the Navajo Nation special events office at (928) 871-6478 or (928) 550-1775.
More than 400 contestants from throughout the country are expected to win thousands of dollars in prize money during the PRCA Pro Rodeo held in Window Rock.
Nightly performances begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for senior citizens 50 years old and older and children five to 12 years old.
More information is available at the Navajo Nation special events office at (928) 871-6478. Entry forms are also available at www.navajonationfair.com.