Rodeo Austin excites fans with music, livestock shows

Rodeo Austin excites fans with music, livestock shows

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Rodeo Austin is rocking Wednesday night with country singer josh turner on stage.

"I tend to like the songs that lift people up whether it's a ballad or a story song like 'Why don't we just dance"or 'Your Man.' It's just I tend to gravitate toward those songs that have some kind of message of hope in it regardless of what story it is and how it feels. I want people to feel better after listening to my record than they did before instead of the other way around," Turner said.

Thursday night Kevin Fowler will perform, followed by Kyle Park and Cody Johnson on Friday and closing things out on Saturday Gary Allan.

On Wednesday kids from all across the state lined up their steers for a final look from the judges.

Nearly 900 entered, only 68 were chosen to go to auction.

Eight-year-old Kenneth Shower of East Bernard makes it for the first time. He's really excited, just a little camera shy.

He's spent the past year caring for his steer Leroy.

"When they first start out they don't trust you very much. Then you try and be their friend like you would do with any human, so basically they're like your friend," Shower said.

Eighteen-year-old Lainey Bourgeois's steer Diablo was also chosen.

"He was a trouble maker when we got him as a baby. People told me I was never going to be able to show him because he was too crazy. I worked hard with him every day and finally got him showable," Bourgeois.

Bourgeois says she spent at least 4 to 5 hours a day with her steer including weekends. Imagine doing that and all of your homework.

"It's neat to have an animal dependent on you and know that you've taken care of it when you come to the shows and win," she said.

Bourgeois has been showing animals since she was in first grade. This was her last auction before she heads to Texas A&M where she'll study animal science and business. Her tuition is already paid for thanks to the money she's earned from selling her animals. Now she will help her siblings do the same.

"So I'll still be here and into it all, but it's bittersweet I'm going to miss doing it," she said.

The lucky owner of the grand champion steer will cash in big. Last year, it netted $50,000 at auction.

One thing that is really neat about the rodeo is every time you pay to get inside, you are funding the future of our youth.

Last year the rodeo handed out 469,000 in scholarships.

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