Wagons Ho!

Wagon trains were rolling through Scott County this week as folks from all across the south began to converge on Jackson and the annual Dixie National Rodeo. The Central Mississippi Ride began at the Newton County Show Barn on Saturday with stops in Lake on Sunday and Forest on Monday before moseying westward to Pelahatchie, Brandon and then the State Fairgrounds in Jackson.

The North Mississippi Ride hitched up at the Neshoba County Fairgrounds on Saturday for the first leg of their journey that will end with the Dixie National Parade on Saturday in the Capital City.

North riders enjoyed a live band Saturday night at the fairgrounds and a pancake breakfast Sunday morning which was a benefit for the Sebastopol Baptist Church Philippines Mission Team.

The second leg of the trip left the fairgrounds Sunday morning and meandered though back roads eventually arriving at the Sebastopol Sale Barn just before dusk.

Monday morning riders headed out for Good Hope and then on to Coal Bluff State Park at the Northwest corner of Scott County for Tuesday night. They were to roll through Rankin County on Wednesday and Thursday before moving on up the  Mississippi State Coliseum on Friday just in time for parade on Saturday.

The annual ride is a statewide event made up of eight different wagon trains and has been going on since the 1980s.

The Dixie National Rodeo kicks off on Thursday and continues though February 12 with entertainment nightly. The Dixie National Parade begins at 10:30 Saturday in downtown Jackson.

According to their website, “originally established as an educational tool for the cattle producers of the state, the Dixie National ranks as one of the largest shows of its kind east of the Mississippi River. Adventure, amazing competition, and standout entertainment, packed into three and a half weeks bring thousands of people donned in denim, buckles and boots to the capital city to celebrate the Dixie National Rodeo.

“Riding some of the best Harper and Morgan Rodeo stock Champion cowboys from all over the world compete for big jackpots. The best of the best of bull fighters, ropers, rodeo clowns, barrel racers and bull-doggers come out in droves and keep crowds entertained with fast-paced action and antics.

“Rodeo Events include: Bareback Bronc Riding, Bull Riding, Calf Roping, Cowgirls Barrel Racing, Saddle Bronc Riding, Steer Wrestling, Team Roping and Tie Down Roping.

“The Dixie National Rodeo also features some of biggest stars in country music. Concerts will take place after rodeo competition.”

For ticket information go to www.ticketmaster.com.