Tonasket Founders celebrating the ‘Red, White and Blue’

This weekend, May 24-25, is Tonasket’s Annual Founders Day celebration, now it in its 88th year.

TONASKET – This weekend, May 24-25, is Tonasket’s Annual Founders Day celebration, now it in its 88th year. Tonasket will celebrate with rodeo action and a grand parade with the theme of “Red, White and Blue.”

Memorial Day Weekend travelers and locals alike, can wrangle up some good rodeo action, at the Comanchero’s Rodeo Grounds located just south of town. The rodeo takes place starting at 7 p.m. both Friday and Saturday evening. The PRCA rodeo’s primes sponsors this year are Tonasket American Legion Post #82 and OK Chevrolet.

“This year Friday night is our ‘Patriot Night’ to go along with the Founders Day theme of Red, White and Blue,” said Rodeo Chairman Roger Sawyer, who adds they’ll have all the same events fans have come to expect from the Founders Day Rodeo.

Sawyer said Bar CF Rodeo World Class Rodeo Stock and Production Services will be providing rodeo stock again this year

“Those that are taking entries are saying we have some awesome contestants that have entered this year,” said Sawyer.

Rodeo events will include Bull Riding, Bareback Riding, Saddle Bronc, Steer Wrestling, Break Away Wrestling, Team Roping, Tie Down Roping, Barrel Racing and much more. Also a long-time favorite of all ages, the Chicken Race.

“I hope everyone can attend this rodeo. It’s going to be big. We are expecting some of the top Columbia River Circuit Cowboys, some of the best rodeo stock in the northwest. It should be a very exciting and fun time for the whole family,” said Sawyer.

Al Parsons will be returning to the announcer’s booth and Rodeo Clown Al Bodie well help to keep the participants safe.

The Tonasket Farmers’ Market Association is organizing the parade and invites the community to join in on the fun.

“I’m looking forward to things, I’m really getting good positive feedback from entries and I’m curious about what people’s interpretations of ‘Red, White and Blue’ will be,” said Mike

Torrence with the Farmers’ Market, referring to this year’s theme.

Heading up the parade, which starts at 10:30 a.m., will be well-known community member Dixie Brown, who is this year’s Grand Marshal. When it was announced that Brown was Grand Marshal this year, Tonasket Chamber of Commerce President Michal Steward said, “Brown has lived in Tonasket since 1978. She joined the nursing staff at the North Valley Nursing Home in 1981 and has held almost every position at the nursing home over the years. She now works one day a week to help serve the residents.”

Brown has also been a long-time director for the North Valley Health Association.

Tickets for the rodeo, which starts both nights at 7 p.m. are $15 for adults and $10 for kids 6-12 years of age. Kids 5 and under are free.

Line up for the parade begins at 9:30 a.m. with check-in at PF1CU. Judging for float entries starts at 10 a.m. with no late judging allowed.