If you knew Vernon West, you know that he had a heart full of love and a head full of roping knowledge. In particular, he loved to see any and all youth involved in some form or fashion. He never believed one had to be the next world’s champion roper. He was happy to just see a child, or adult, share his love for horses and the sport of rodeo. If one showed an interest, Vernon would go above and beyond to see that dream fulfilled. And no matter what, Vernon West always made that individual feel like a champion!Though there were many over the years, some of Vernon’s closest friends were the likes of Jim Bob Altizer, Bud Smith, Ray Wharton, and Mack Yates. A person could travel to any of the major roping competitions anywhere and find this group of men in their conglomerate known simply as: “West & Company”. All the ropers made a point to come by and say their “hellos” and shake hands with these great men. And just the same, West & Company went out of their way to acknowledge the great ropers and horses, cattle and everyone and everything that played a role in making what they loved: a good roping. In 2006 we had a vision: West & Company would keep on helping kids! We held our first annual roping, a team roping, in Sonora, Texas. In 2008, we added an invitational calf roping. The roping has been held in Sonora and San Angelo in years past. Since 2005, the Vernon West Memorial Scholarship Fund has awarded over $35,000 to graduating high school seniors who are involved in rodeo or some type of agricultural field. As we enter our sixth year of the West & Company Roping Classic, we have high expectations. With some of the world’s top talent- men and women of all ages- competing in barrel racing, calf roping and team roping over a three day period, we are striving to be one of those great events that no one, contestant or spectator, wants to miss. In 2011 we decided to find a more central location. Many towns were considered, but Mason seemed to be the logical choice due to its beautiful facilities. This year contestants have responded in a very positive fashion and seem very excited to make a full weekend in Mason. Also among the changes made was the format of the competition. This year features a full day of roping that is limited to youth only. These young cowboys and cowgirls are the very best in their sports and will be seen for many years to come. All three days will present opportunities to see rodeo athletes, some past and present world champions, compete in the events they love. There will also be lots of rodeo stars outside the competition with many PRCA Hall of Fame stars and representatives being involved to help make our event successful. Come out to Fort Mason Park this weekend for a full weekend of roping and riding and cheer for your favorite cowboys and cowgirls. Dance under the stars to the music of Mack Abernathy with special guests Bo Hutto and Robert Blandford on Saturday night from 8-12 PM.
For more information regarding entries or otherwise, please call any of the following numbers:Morgan McMillan (325) 347-7408
Amanda McMillan (325) 347-2486Bud West (325) 280-7970Ryon West (325) 451-4651