Sunday is final day of annual Benton crowd-pleaser

Dillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep. - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Riders wait for the calf tie-down competition. - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
John Leinaweaver wrestles a steer in the Benton Rodeo on Thursday night. - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Dillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Riders cast a long shadow as the sun sets and they line up to hit the ring at the Benton Rodeo. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Tom Farrelly of Cayuga, N.Y., takes a long drag while wrestling a steer at the Benton Rodeo. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
A cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
- - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Riders’ shadows create a dramatic silhouette. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
- - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
The rodeo is filled with action and excitement. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Aimee Dilger|Times Leader - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
A cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo. - - Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

BENTON — Well, pardners, if you reckon you need to head to Colorado, Montana or some other Western locale to find yourself a rodeo, reckon again.

The 34th annual Benton Rodeo, just about 30 miles from Wilkes-Barre, offers four days of mighty fine ropin’ and ridin,’ and is considered one of the top rodeos east of the Mississippi.

Last week’s action included calf roping, barrel racing, bronc’ riding — with and without saddles — and even mutton bustin.’ That last one allows little kids to climb aboard a sheep and try to hold on for 6 seconds.

The fun of the rodeo concludes today, with a Bull-A-Rama show that begins at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for children.

Earlier today, all are welcome to attend a non-denominationl “Cowboy Church” on the rodeo grounds, and breakfast will be served from 8 to 11 a.m.

The rodeo can be found at 385 Mendenhall Lane, just off Route 487 in Columbia County. For more info, see bentonrodeo.com or call 570-925-6536.

Dillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo10-1.jpgDillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Riders wait for the calf tie-down competition.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo-8-1.jpgRiders wait for the calf tie-down competition. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

John Leinaweaver wrestles a steer in the Benton Rodeo on Thursday night.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo1-1.jpgJohn Leinaweaver wrestles a steer in the Benton Rodeo on Thursday night. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Dillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo10-1.jpgDillon Welsh 5, and Carter Merkle 6, ready their ropes for the mutton bustin’ competition, when the littlest cowboys and cowgirls get to ride a sheep. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Riders cast a long shadow as the sun sets and they line up to hit the ring at the Benton Rodeo.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo11-1.jpgRiders cast a long shadow as the sun sets and they line up to hit the ring at the Benton Rodeo. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Tom Farrelly of Cayuga, N.Y., takes a long drag while wrestling a steer at the Benton Rodeo.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo2-1.jpgTom Farrelly of Cayuga, N.Y., takes a long drag while wrestling a steer at the Benton Rodeo. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

A cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_TTL072118Rodeo3-1.jpgA cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo.jump_-1.jpgAimee Dilger | Times Leader

Riders’ shadows create a dramatic silhouette.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo.shadow-1.jpgRiders’ shadows create a dramatic silhouette. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo14-1.jpgAimee Dilger | Times Leader

The rodeo is filled with action and excitement.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo16-1.jpgThe rodeo is filled with action and excitement. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader

Aimee Dilger|Times Leader
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo18-1.jpgAimee Dilger|Times LeaderAimee Dilger | Times Leader

A cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/web1_rodeo.cowgirl-1.jpgA cowgirl readies her lasso for the ladies breakaway competition on the first night of the Benton Rodeo. Aimee Dilger | Times Leader
Sunday is final day of annual Benton crowd-pleaser