Jasper has had a giant hole in the month of May for the last few years. Two months after the Jasper Lions Club Rodeo wrapped up their 71st annual rodeo in May of 2017, the public service organization announced that it would be their last.
The Lions Club had been hemorrhaging money for the last several years of the event as attendance dropped while the cost to bring in quality entertainment climbed ever higher.
With the rodeo cancelled, the Lions Club sold the arena which had been built in 1947. After changing through a few hands, the arena building and land is now owned by an out-of-state company.
Now, a local church says they’re going to pick up the Jasper rodeo tradition. Officials at Jasper County Cowboy Church have announced plans to begin holding a professional rodeo at their facilities on Highway 190 West in Jasper.
For the last few days, crews have been hard at work at the arena behind the church. They are building covered arena seating for up to 1,000 people, and the church says they plan to hold their first Jasper Pro Rodeo on Friday, May 14th and Saturday, May 15th with Mutton Bustin’ beginning at 6:30 p.m. and the rest of the events beginning at 7:30 p.m.