‘A tradition in the community’: St. George Lions dust off their boots for the 87th Dixie Roundup Rodeo

85th annual St. George Lions Club Dixie Roundup Rodeo, Sept. 19, 2019, St. George, Utah | Photo by Andrew Pinckney, St. George News

CONTRIBUTED CONTENT — Saddle up for the 87th annual Dixie Roundup Rodeo taking place Thursday through Saturday, Sept. 16-18. Organizers anticipate three action-packed nights featuring some of the best cowboys and cowgirls the West has to offer. 

85th annual St. George Lions Club Dixie Roundup Rodeo, Sept. 19, 2019, St. George, Utah | Photo by Andrew Pinckney, St. George News

A hometown favorite for generations of Southern Utah locals, the rodeo has been organized by the St. George Lions Club every year since 1934. 

“It’s such a tradition in the community,” rodeo chairman Matt Stillman said. “It represents the heritage of the local people here.” 

The event is sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, the world’s largest rodeo organization. Bull riding, bareback and saddle bronc riding, team roping, steer wrestling and barrel racing are among the nightly attractions, along with mutton-busting for the little ones. And don’t miss appearances by veteran rodeo clown Randee Munns and a dazzling specialty act featuring wild mustangs.  

The opening night, Thursday, is always kids’ night. Children ages 11 and under may enter for free and spend their money on the St. George Lions’ “world-famous” hamburgers and hot dogs instead. 

Friday is Pink Night, when $1 from every ticket will be set aside for the Intermountain Foundation to benefit breast cancer patients. Spectators and rodeo competitors are encouraged to wear pink to show support for breast cancer awareness. Each Pink Night typically raises between $10,000-$12,000, and the St. George Lions have donated well over $100,000 over the years.

Hundreds gather to watch the St. George Lions Club 85th annual Dixie Roundup Rodeo parade, Sept. 21, 2019, St. George, Utah | Photo by Andrew Pinckney, St. George News

After a hiatus in 2020, the rodeo parade through downtown St. George will be returning this year on Saturday. The parade route starts on Tabernacle Street near 1000 East at 9 a.m.

Plan on the rodeo finals that night selling out and book tickets now, Stillman said. Admission costs $20 per person for reserved seating, $15 for general admission adults and $5 for kids ages 11 and under. Kids age 2 and younger who can sit on a parent’s lap may enter for free. 

Early ticket sales for reserved seating and general admission begin Saturday. Tickets may be purchased directly from the St. George Lions at 301 E. 100 South or by calling the rodeo hotline at 435-673-3301. The sales office will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day except Sunday throughout the week of the rodeo.

The Dixie Sunbowl in the heart of historic downtown has been the rodeo’s home ever since the arena opened in the late 1940s. The city of St. George recently invested in the venue with new concession stands and restrooms. 

Reed Flake, who has served as the rodeo’s announcer for over a decade, said that even though St. George is growing, it “still has a small-town feel.”

“I think that’s what people like about it.”

85th annual St. George Lions Club Dixie Roundup Rodeo, Sept. 19, 2019, St. George, Utah | Photo by Andrew Pinckney, St. George News

All members of the St. George Lions join the club with the expectation that they will be volunteering their time to help prepare, run and then disassemble the rodeo each year, Stillman said. Many are business owners who also contribute to the success of the event through sponsorships. Their efforts are bolstered by the St. George Lady Lions, who assist with ticket sales and planning the pre-rodeo parties and dinner, among other duties.

The rodeo serves as the only source of revenue for the St. George Lions and supports their charitable contributions to scholarship funds, rodeo clubs, collegiate sports teams and 4-H and Future Farmers of America high school programs in the Washington County area. Proceeds also fund the local arm of the Lions International campaign to improve quality of life for the visually impaired.

“We appreciate all the support we get from the community,” Stillman said. “Come out and keep supporting the Lions, and we’ll keep giving back to the great people of St. George.”

Written by ALEXA MORGAN for St. George News.

•  S P O N S O R E D   C O N T E N T  •

Event details

  • What: St. George Lions Dixie Roundup Rodeo.
  • When: September 16-18, 6-11 p.m.
  • Where: Dixie Sunbowl, 150 S. 400 East, St. George.
  • Tickets: Reserved seating – $20; general admission – adults $15, children age 11 and under $5.
  • Information: Telephone: 435-673-3301 | Email: [email protected]| Website.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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