Elks-RodeoIn the heart of Santa Maria Style Barbecue country, many of the keepers of barbecue and other local traditions are cowboys to the core. So it’s no surprise that the annual Santa Maria Elks Rodeo is one of the Santa Maria Valley’s biggest events of the year.

And you can bet that Santa Maria Style Barbecue will have a presence at this year’s 70th Annual Santa Maria Elks Rodeo happening Thursday, May 30 through Sunday, June 2. Indeed, an array of dining events, fundraisers, dances, contests, exhibitions, performances and even a parade and golf tournament dot the calendar throughout this four day extravaganza held at the Elks Unocal Event Center in Santa Maria.

Each day, a three hour rodeo performance treats spectators to six adrenaline-rushing events, including bull riding, bronc riding, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, bareback riding, barrel racing, local team roping and mutton bustin’, all garnished with rodeo’s top announcers, bull fighters, barrelmen and stock contractors. Then, on Sunday, the top cowboys compete for the championship.

Two additional events new to this year’s lineup are Camp Buckaroo ‘n’ Lil’ Rodeo for kids, plus the Vino & Vittles Wine Tasting Tent for those a bit more mature. Open the entire four days, Camp Buckaroo ‘n’ Lil’ Rodeo invites kids to enter and compete in mock-rodeo events. This is a chance to rope, ride a bull and run in the Stick Horse Gauntlet for a chance to bring home a buckle! Meanwhile, a new play area and educational zone lets children tackle a rock wall, run the obstacle course or soar in the bounce house.

Vintners will be pouring the fine wines of Santa Maria Valley at the new Vino & Vittles Wine Tasting Tent. Located adjacent to the rodeo’s Main Arena, this is the perfect spot for attendees to begin their festivities while enjoying live music and appetizers. Click here to plan your rodeo adventure.