Aug 122015


By Naomi Hatch

Vance Muder, chairman of the Special Events Committee, gave an update to the Taylor Town Council Aug. 6, specifically discussing this year’s 4th of July rodeo.

“We’re actually lucky we had a rodeo after the rain,” said Muder. “We had lots of effort put in that made it possible.”

Muder said following the downpour the arena was full of water, but with the help of many, they were able to have the rodeo.

The concessions were changed this year. They were not run with volunteers, but were subbed out, “which worked well,” said Muder. “I heard no negative.” The vendors said it was worth their while.

“I heard lots of positive,” said Vice Mayor Shawn Palmer, who serves on the rodeo committee.

The gate for the rodeo in 2014 was $35,641, but this year it was only $27,170, according to Muder. One problem was the family ticket, with many groups utilizing a family ticket for more than those who live in the home. He said that there was also a problem with the fence getting knocked down on the west side, and contestant vehicles entered the rodeo, with those who were not contestants not being charged.

“Next year one thing in the works is having the area policed by security,” said Palmer.

New this year were ticket booths, which worked well, said Muder.

“My view was it looked like a more organized, well run rodeo than the year prior,” said Councilman Jason Brubaker.

“The dirt work they did was a miracle,” he continued.

Palmer noted that he heard between 2½” and 2¾” of rain fell in several minutes, calling it a torrential downpour, and agreed that it was a miracle the arena was usable.

Another problem was that the cancellation of the fireworks show was not announced.

Councilman David Smith asked if any of the fireworks used at the Snowflake Pioneer Day Rodeo were Taylor’s, because they had fireworks on both Friday and Saturday.

Muder said they were not, that Taylor’s fireworks will be used at the Sweet Corn Festival Ranch Rodeo.

“On behalf of the council, we want you to know how grateful we are,” said Mayor Fay Hatch, acknowledging the hundreds and hundreds of volunteers who show up and make it happen. “We want you to know how much we appreciate you and your committee.”

In other business, the council unanimously approved Resolution R2015-05, the regional transit intergovernmental agreement that pertains to the White Mountain Connection bus line that runs from Pinetop to Holbrook, traveling through Taylor three times a day. The town’s obligation is approximately $6,000 a year.