For 47 years, crowds of people from all over the Upper Peninsula and Wisconsin have come to celebrate the UP Championship Rodeo in Iron River. Although the actual rodeo competitions take place Saturday and Sunday, Friday was â??Market Dazeâ?? at the rodeo grounds, as well as other community festivities around town. Coordinators are always adding new events; this year they've added a Pig Raffle.
â??Itâ??s to help raise money for the rodeo,â?? said coordinator, Shauna Lohrey. â??Itâ??s a whole pig! You get a whole pig for first prize, packaged, wrapped and ready to go.â??
Fridayâ??s â??Market Dazeâ?? at the grounds included vendors, pony rides, a petting zoo and preliminary competitions for the UP Rodeo Queen. There are four girls competing for UP Rodeo Queen and have competitions on Saturday.
â??Tomorrow they have horsemanship and the Wild West parade that's at 8:00 a.m. in the morning here at the rodeo grounds,â?? said 2013 Miss UP Rodeo Queen, Brooke Granquist. â??The parade is at 10:00 a.m. and then our first performance is at 2:00 p.m.â??
The official crowning is Sunday at 1:30 p.m. Outside of the rodeo grounds, community members held a book and bake sale as well as an old western photoshoot at the West Iron County Library.
â??Itâ??s put on by the Friends of the Library,â?? said volunteer, Grace Brindle. â??We help to raise funds for the library to do different events and also to enhance the library and the projects for the community that the library does.â??
Rodeo performances are Saturday at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., which is the â??Tough Enough to Wear Pinkâ?? performance, as well as Sunday at 2:00 p.m. Visit the UP Championship Rodeo website for a full list of the weekendâ??s festivities.