Record Attendance Set As RODEOHOUSTON™ Crowns North America's Champions

Mar 21, 2011, 14:47 ET from Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo

HOUSTON, March 21, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 79th edition of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ ended on a record-breaking run, with 2,262,834 in total attendance, all while showcasing North America's champion athletes through the invitational RODEOHOUSTON BP Super Series and the inaugural Cinch RODEOHOUSTON Super Shootout.

"There are so many variables regarding attendance, from the weather to the economy, but we continue to excel by creating an exciting, innovative, fun, affordable place for friends and families to enjoy," said Skip Wagner, president of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. "With the help of the more than 24,000 Show volunteers, we are able to continue to be the largest livestock show, richest regular-season rodeo, and offer the best entertainment option around."

Following are highlights from the 2011 Show:


  • The 2011 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo entertained a record 2,262,834 visitors for total attendance (for all activities on the grounds).
  • RODEOHOUSTON paid attendance totaled 1,255,323 fans enjoying action-packed rodeo and superstars in concert.
  • Five RODEOHOUSTON performances, featuring concerts by the artists below, landed in the list of the Show's top 20 paid Rodeo attendance records:
    • 3rd: March 19, 2011Brad Paisley – 73,825
    • 4th: March 16, 2011Miranda Lambert – 73,811
    • 5th: March 13, 2011 — La Arrolladorra Banda El Limon and La Leyenda – 73,469
    • 15th: March 6, 2011Selena Gomez – 72,709
    • 19th: March 15, 2011 — KISS – 72,384
  • A record 244,184 people visited the World's Championship Bar-B-Que Contest to help kick off the Show, topping last year's attendance record of 221,229.


  • The 2011 RODEOHOUSTON BP Super Series, an international, invitational championship, featured the world's top 40 cowboys and top 50 cowgirls in seven events.
  • With the entire purse provided by RODEOHOUSTON and no entry fees required by the athletes, contestants competed for a share of more than $1.5 million in prize money, and each event champion walked away from Reliant Stadium with at least $50,000, a RODEOHOUSTON trophy saddle, and a champion buckle.
  • 2011 RODEOHOUSTON BP Super Series Champions, with total money earned, are:
    • tie-down roping: Shane Hanchey$53,900
    • bareback riding: Clint Cannon$58,900
    • team roping: Tommy and Cody Doescher$105,250
    • saddle bronc riding: Cort Scheer$60,350
    • steer wrestling: Stockton Graves – $58,450
    • barrel racing: Jody Sheffield$55,400
    • bull riding: Bobby Welsh$61,350
  • The Cinch RODEOHOUSTON Super Shootout: North America's Champions debuted Sunday, March 20. This ground-breaking, invitation-only, one-day event  featured champion athletes from the top 10 U.S. and Canadian rodeos competing in bareback riding, barrel racing, bull riding, and saddle bronc riding for a total purse of $200,000, making the event the richest one-day rodeo. Each champion walked away with $25,000.
  • 2011 Cinch RODEOHOUSTON Super Shootout Champions are:
    • bareback riding: Will Lowe
    • barrel racing: Sherry Cervi
    • bull riding: Douglas Duncan
    • saddle bronc riding: Cort Scheer
  • The High Flyin' Award, sponsored by United Airlines, presents a year's worth of airline travel to the contestant with the highest flights, hardest spills, roughest crashes, and toughest luck. Saddle bronc rider Billy Etbauer won for a heart-stopping wreck Monday, March 14, which kept him from the next round of competition.
  • The RODEOHOUSTON Sports Medicine Team was introduced in 2011, providing a comprehensive medical plan for all rodeo athletes competing at the Show. High-caliber sports medicine services were provided to all participants by emergency and orthopedic physicians, chiropractors, sports medicine trainers, and Safety Committee paramedics and EMTs.


  • This year's livestock competitions and horse shows boasted 26,683 entries.
  • Each of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo junior auctions brought in more than $1 million. Six of the junior auction Grand Champion and Reserve Grand Champion records were broken. The prices for the top winners were (* indicates new world's records):
    • *Grand Champion Barrow, $177,000; and *Reserve Grand Champion Barrow, $120,000
    • *Grand Champion Goat, $140,000; and Reserve Grand Champion Goat, $100,000
    • *Grand Champion Lamb, $200,000; and Reserve Grand Champion Lamb, $120,000
    • Grand Champion Pen of Broilers, $120,000; and Reserve Grand Champion Pen of Broilers, $77,000
    • Grand Champion Steer, $350,000; and Reserve Grand Champion Steer, $310,000
    • Grand Champion Turkey, $88,000; and Reserve Grand Champion Turkey, $81,000
    • *Grand Champion Work of Art, $205,000; and *Reserve Grand Champion Work of Art, $170,000
  • Junior auction sales totaled $8,235,171.
  • The junior auction totals** included: market steers — $2,719,450; lamb and goat — $1,629,321; barrows — $1,257,300; poultry — $1,305,100; and school art — $1,324,000 (**unaudited preliminary totals that do not include cash contributions and some purchase commitment amounts).
  • The Junior Commercial Steer Sale total was $527,043.
  • The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Champion Wine Auction brought in $1,659,729, including a Show record price of $210,000 for the Grand Champion Best of Show, and a Show record price of $130,000 for the Reserve Grand Champion Best of Show.
  • The Ranching & Wildlife Auction totaled $263,465.


  • FOX Sports Houston, Southwest, South, International and other FOX regions around the country aired two-hour live coverage of the RODEOHOUSTON BP Super Series Championship, Saturday, March 19, and the Cinch RODEOHOUSTON Super Shootout, Sunday, March 20.
  • Additionally, streamed all rodeo action live from March 1 – 20, free for all viewers.
  • National media outlets, from newspapers to television programs, covered the Show extensively in 2011. The Wall Street Journal reported on the changes in the Rodeo, and Jimmy Fallon, host of "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon," tried his hand at the calf scramble. Fallon's Rodeo experience aired March 15.
  • The Show will be featured this summer and later this year on TLC's "The Little Couple," Animal Planet's "Animal Cops," and the Food Network's "Outrageous Food," as well as on BBC Global News and Pentagon TV.


  • In 2011, the Show launched the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo free, custom mobile application. The app, available for iPhone and Android devices, is an electronic version of the Show's visitor guide. The mobile app had more than 37,000 downloads.
  • Country music star Clay Walker opened the Show Tuesday, March 1, marking his 17th appearance. Walker also served as the Grand Marshal of the Downtown Rodeo Parade Saturday, Feb. 26.
  • Texas Gov. Rick Perry joined RODEOHOUSTON announcers Bob Tallman and Boyd Polhamus Tuesday, March 1 to introduce that night's entertainer, Clay Walker.
  • Before she took the stage Friday, March 4, Janet Jackson was presented a photo of her brothers as members of The Jackson 5 performing at RODEOHOUSTON in 1974. Janet's performance was 37 years after her brothers took the stage.
  • Alan Jackson was inducted into the Show's Star Trail of Fame Friday, March 18. Jackson is only the fifth entertainer in history to perform in front of 1 million RODEOHOUSTON fans. He first hit the rotating stage at RODEOHOUSTON in 1992, and his March 18, 2011, performance was his 19th appearance at RODEOHOUSTON.
  • RODEOHOUSTON rang The Closing Bell® for the New York Stock Exchange Friday, March 18 in RODEOHOUSTON style, with a bull rider bursting out of the chute on a bucking bull.
  • The Show hosted 2,291 international guests from 61 countries, including large delegations from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and Venezuela. Several guests came from as far away as Thailand and Kyrgyzstan.
  • The president of the Republic of Honduras, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, and guests, were given a behind-the-scenes tour of Show facilities and attractions, participated in Grand Entry, and enjoyed the Sunday, March 6, Rodeo performance.
  • Harry Pepper, the Show's oldest volunteer and Calf Scramble Committee member, started the Saturday, March 5, calf scramble. Pepper, who is 100 years old, has been volunteering since the Show was held in the Sam Houston Coliseum.
  • New to the Show in 2011, the Horticulture Program featured horticulture displays and competitions for Texas students, non-professional adult gardeners, and professional florists and landscapers. The program culminated in a Floriculture Face-off, where professional florists competed in a timed competition.
  • Fair managers from across the country toured the Show facilities, getting a behind-the-scenes view of the Show.
  • Two of the Show's entertainers brought unique patriotic touches to their performances. Kid Rock's saxophonist played "The Star Spangled Banner," bringing the huge crowd to its feet to sing the national anthem in the middle of the concert. KISS asked the sold-out crowd of 72,384 to stand and say the pledge of allegiance, with another enthusiastic response.
  • In the Capital One Bank AGVENTURE Birthing Center, 65 piglets, 20 lambs and 15 calves were born during the Show. In the Poultry Exhibit, more than 180 chicks were hatched.
  • A new soil exhibit allowed visitors the chance to get up close to earthworms and learn how to plant seeds.
  • More than 187,000 stuffed animals were won at the games in the carnival.
  • More than 20,000 young cowboys and cowgirls took a ride at the pony rides.
  • More than 23,000 people visited the butterfly house.
  • More than 9,000 children rolled around the water in giant bubbles.
  • Food could be found at nearly all areas within Reliant Park, and Show visitors enjoyed the unique types available. Consumed were:
    • 122,800 funnel cakes
    • 111,000 turkey legs (20 small turkey farms!)
    • 66,000 caramel and candied apples (two orchards!)
    • 20,000 pounds of sugar for cotton candy
    • 9,000 pounds of strawberries
    • 5,000 cans of whipped cream
    • 10,800 chocolate-covered strawberries
    • 30,000 glasses of lemonade
    • 3 tons of catfish
    • 50,000 pounds of potatoes
    • 40,000 deep-fried Oreos
  • The Show's merchandise sales reached more than $2 million in 2011.

Heritage Partners for the 2011 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo were Reliant Energy, Coca-Cola, Ford, Miller Lite and

BP America.

For complete results and highlights, visit the Show's Web site at, or, visit the Show on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and YouTube: rodeohouston.

The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is a Section 501(c)(3) charity that benefits youth, supports education, and facilitates better agricultural practices through exhibitions and presentation. Since its beginning in 1932, the Show has committed more than $265 million to the youth of Texas. The 2012 Show will run Feb. 28 – March 18. For more information, visit

SOURCE Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo