A special event in Grand Junction will honor a late Western Slope bronc rider.

The 1st annual Hunter Norman Memorial Bulls and Ranch Broncs Rodeo will pay tribute to Hunter Norman, of Paonia, who died in a car accident May 6 on Lands End Road.

Norman is a 2016 graduate of Fruita Monument High School and had a known love and passion for ranch bronc riding.

Tyler Williams, a two-time Colorado Bull Fighter of the Year is organizing what will become an annual event in Grand Junction.This event will take place on Saturday, June 23 at the Mesa County Fairgrounds.

One of the highlights of the event will be the return of 9-time PBR Finals world qualifier Tony Mendes. Mendes was the PRCA Rookie of the Year in 1996, won the North American Rodeo Commission in 1995 and has qualified twice for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

“I decided to make a comeback at this memorial event to represent what Hunter represented. Hunter was someone who was all about heart and the try.He always came around and showed up with a new kid who was ready to learn how to ride. He always wanted to help and kept doing whatever he could to make the sport grow." -Tony  Mendes


More than $3000 in prize money will be awarded to bronc riders, and over $2500 available for bull riders with payouts for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place plus other awards.

Entries are now being taken for the event, limited to the first 30 bronc riders, and the first 20 bull riders to register. There's more information through the Mesa County Fairgrounds.

For those wishing to donate, a Go Fund Me account has been set up to help fund this special event. And if you enjoy rodeos, make plans now to attend and support this effort to honor Hunter Norman.

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