Super Dogs

Yule                                                                             Stock Show Moon

Took Gabe and Ruth to Superdogs at the National Western Stock Show yesterday. We started attending back in 2010. That year I took Ruth on the shuttle. We got about two miles from home. She turned to me with a slightly scared, sad look, she was 3 I think, and said, “I miss my mommy.” I called Jen, she talked to Ruth and we went on.

Since then we’ve seen rodeos, dancing horses, many superdogs, lots of cattle, some pigs, sheep, alpaca. The exhibit halls are full of large metal pincers to hold cattle and other large animals while branding and medicating, fencing, horse stalls, lots of pick-ups and other motorized things like Bobcats, Kubota tractors and John Deere machinery. Trailers of all kinds and lengths. Rope. The big Cinch booth with all things denim and boot.

That first year Jen and Ruth were watching a sheep competition and a reporter from the Denver Post caught them in a picture that went on the front page. It’s become a family tradition although this year it was just Grandma, Grandpop and the kids.

We ate lunch at the Cattleman’s Grill, a large open air restaurant with oilcloth covered 8 foot tables put together in long rows. Like a big family reunion. Lots of cowboy hats and boots, kids.

After that we wandered the exhibit halls. Gabe and Grandma went to the petting zoo where they got their hands on sheep, goats, pigs while Ruth and I examined the Western Art Show and Sale. Ruth and I liked the show. It had some wonderful sculpture, especially a small stone owl, landscapes done in non-traditional (that is not sentimental) manners, and some excellent paintings of animals, in particular one Brahman bull. He was a distinct individual in this full head portrait.

The Superdogs show either has gotten better since we first saw it or I’ve lowered my standards. This year was fun. These canine athletes, most of them rescue dogs, catch frisbees, do the high jump, run through plastic tunnels at speed, race along raised platforms and have a helluva good time. They are high energy, eager animals.

We’ll be back next year. Who knows what wonders we’ll see?