No, the Cow Palace isn’t a castle built for bovines. Well, it is, sort of, if you’re envisioning a premiere showplace where western riders and their cow-savvy horses perform inside a huge indoor stadium.
San Francisco’s long-established Grand National Rodeo, Horse and Stock Show has been moved to spring, and will take place at the city’s famed Cow Palace. The new dates for the 62nd annual show are April 6-14. In a return to what made the old days of the Cow Palace a popular stop on the horse show circuit, reined cow horse events will once again be part of the competition schedule. The National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) has joined forces with the Cow Palace to bring tradition back to where it began years ago for a multitude of well-known cow horses and riders.
Cheryl Magoteaux of the NRCHA notes that the Cow Palace/NRCHA reunion has long been overdue. “We are very pleased to join in bringing back the heart of the Grand National: the reined cow horses. We see this as the start of bigger and better things and our hats are off to the Cow Palace Tradition.”
But wait! There’s more! Part of the competition is a smattering of great live music performances. The Grand National concert schedule includes Gary Allen, Heart, Gretchen Wilson, Montgomery Gentry, and Chris Ledoux’s back-up band, Western Underground.