No Cattle Drive To Kick-Off Cheyenne Frontier Days This Year; Will Run Horses Thru Town Instead

The unofficial kick-off to Cheyenne Frontier Days will look a little different on Sunday, when instead of hundreds of cows taking to the streets of Cheyenne, it will be about 50 horses.

Ellen Fike

July 12, 20222 min read

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(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

The unofficial kick-off to Cheyenne Frontier Days will look a little different on Sunday, when the hundreds of cattle that usually take to the streets of Cheyenne will be replaced by about 50 horses.

Chad Matthews, CFD’s rodeo chairman, told Cowboy State Daily on Tuesday that while running horses through the city’s streets will be somewhat of a departure from tradition, it hasn’t been all that long ago that CFD officials used horses to help usher in the “Daddy of ’em All.”

“The steers that we would normally use in the cattle drive are actually going to be busy being part of part of the rodeo on Sunday, due to our qualifying challenges,” Matthews said. “So we had to put our heads together to come up with a way to keep the tradition alive.”

Matthews said he thinks the horses will look majestic when striding through town, acting as a throwback to the 1970s, the last time CFD used horses in the drive.

While the rodeo chairman said he understood that some people might be surprised by the change, he thinks if they give it a “fair shake,” the drive will turn out to be better than they might have expected.

“These are horses you will see in the rodeo at some point or another,” Matthews said.

The horses are not the only new part of the annual drive. Normally, the drive takes place early on the Sunday before Frontier Days begins, but now, it will take place later in the day, around 1 p.m.

However, the route, which begins at the intersection of Interstate 25 and Horse Creek Road and moves along the interstate into Frontier Park will be similar to years past.

“I’m extremely excited,” Matthews said. “I think the change in visual will be positive.”

The year’s Cheyenne Frontier Days will run from July 22 to July 31 and will feature not only the world’s largest outdoor rodeo, but concerts from artists such as Brooks and Dunn, Nelly, Kid Rock and Jason Aldean.

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Ellen Fike