The rides often last less than 10 seconds. But for those who have become addicted to the adrenaline rush of bull riding and aspire to make a living doing so, J Bar W Ranch provides an avenue for those wanting to ascend to professional status.
Raising more than 850 heads of livestock in Union Bridge, with an emphasis on breeding the best bucking bulls, the father-son-daughter trio of John, Sonny and Lisa Williams head J Bar W Ranch — the home of the seven-event Battle of the Beast Series.
While rodeo enthusiasts can attend annual events such as the Maryland State Fair, J Bar offers the state's only continuous series of events.
From June through August, the Battle of the Beast events take place on the first and third Saturdays, with the series-ending event taking place in September. Up to 30 bull riders enter each rodeo, with each of them trying to advance to the final rodeo, where they have a chance to win prize money.
The rodeos begin at 7 p.m., but gates open two hours earlier. The half-hour Little Wranglers rodeo gives children an opportunity to play inside the rodeo arena and become familiar with the basics of rodeo. Also, women participate in barrel racing events, during which riders and their horses are expected to complete a cloverleaf pattern around three barrels placed in the rodeo arena in the fastest time possible.
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