Old Rodeo Stories for Papafins Old Rodeo Stories for Papafins
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    Old Rodeo Stories for Papafins
from bigL62 #13853  
8/22/2011 2:37:51 PM


 In 1985 I was entered in Tallahassee FL and Montgomery AL the same weekend, and Jacksonville FL the next weekend. I met a fellow Kansas bareback rider in Oklahoma City, left my vehicle there, and headed Southeast in his old Volvo. We drove straight thru as most rodeo guys did switching off every 4 hours or so. We went to Tallahassee first, and both competed. Future All Around World champion Dave Appleton showed up that night after flying in and the airline had lost his bareback riggin. He walked around trying different riggins out and my buddy's fit the best. As usual, Dave made a good ride using borrowed equipment. Neither of us did any good and off to Montgomery we went.

We had asked around at Tallahassee, trying to find me a place to stay for the week (or find a friendly girl) but had no luck. At Montgomery, my friend found me a place to stay for the week and I ended up placing in the rodeo (6th place if I remember right). I would be staying with the rodeo secretary and her husband. I didn't know them from Adam but I was about to have one of the best weeks of my life.

I had told my friend to find me a fisherman if possible because I wanted to do some fishing during the layover. Well my friend did a good job. Their names were Sister and Howard Klingamann. Sister was the sister to Matt Dryden who owned Circle D Rodeo Company. Howard was known for pulling his bass boat to rodeos and fishing his way back home. I was in heaven.

They were from Bonifay FL. We went to 4 different fishing locations during the layover week. One was a Clearwater lake in that area. The lake was mentioned in Bassmaster magazine. I remember watching a 2 lb bass pick up Howard's worm in 20' of water just like it was in a bathtub. We also went to a river (don't know the name), Lake Seminole, and a pond (that we had a terrible time unloading and loading the boat at). Saw a gator run off a big log into the water at the pond (or at least I saw a flash of gator and a lot of splash). Now I was a 22 year old kid from Kansas and had really never been anywhere outside the Midwest. I was a little scared to be fishing around gators but Howard said it wouldn't be a problem. Howard had several fish in his freezer he was keeping to mount (over 10 lbs if I remember right). He would pull them out and let me see them and tell me where he caught them. Every night we would have a good meal and ice cream floats for dessert. I had a great time. The week went by fast and off to Jacksonville we headed.

Howard was going to "the Big O" after the Jacksonville rodeo to fish so we pulled his bass boat behind us to the rodeo. I remember the rodeo was near the Gator Bowl complex and there was a toll bridge. Howard said he never could remember the correct exit and we ended up going over that toll bridge 3 times. Finally got to the rodeo and caught a ride back to OKC with some Colorado bull riders. I had broken one of Howard's rods during the week and I offered to pay for it and my stay but he said not to worry about it. I saw Howard a couple of months later at a rodeo in Georgia (Athens) and I ended up placing there.

I called Howard a few years later. I had pretty much hung up my rodeo stuff and was starting to get the fishing itch. I was in the market for my first bass boat. He gave me some boat advice and I appreciate all the info he offered. They were great people and writing this makes me miss the good ole days.


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   Thanks Papafins from DaveT  8/22/2011 6:27:56 PM
I always like reading your stories. Like reading a short book.

   Lonnie from Papafins  8/22/2011 6:45:38 PM
Sister and Howard are great friends of mine, I used to judge every little rodeo Matt Dryden had at the Ranch (CircleD) so I coulld fish in the little lake.

Howard and I have shared many stories over a beer or six.
Sister is a great rodeo secretary, and good lady just wish she would quit smoking.

I may have judged Jacksonville the year you are talking about as I judged it three or so years.
Bob Barnes had the stock there when I judged it.

Howard and I judged it together one year, anad they hired Shawn Davis to produce the thing. I got a call the middle of the week from Shawn wanted to make sure I was going to be on time. As you know Shawn puts the NFR on for Las Vegas Events.
Shawn wants the judges the clowns the contract acts and everyone in a conference room at 5:30pm, he has the whole evening down to the minute on paper. They had pony rides for kids from like 7 to 7:30, what time they would drag the arena.

On the way out of the meeting and asked Howard to check his sheet and what time his potty break was as i might want to switch.

The guy the put the rodeo on was a big contractor in Jacksonville, and had hauled in sand for the arena floor, and it was too deep.
You could hear the bulls grunting at about six seconds in that deep footing, for you non rodeo folks bulls buck best on firm footing.. The calf ropers had a hard time clearing calves.

I mentioned it to John Barnes after the rodeo, When I got to the arena the next night Howard was waiting for me, took me into the arena, and said look at this.
They had gone in after the rodeo with big front end loaders and removed every bit of the sand and hauled in a nice sand clay, it completely changed the conditions.

We talked to Sister as she was the sec. and called the office to discuss the problem.
The Thursday night perf was paid as a sererate rodeo and the Friday Sat. perfs were paid as a regular two perf rodeo.
We wrote up our reports and the producer was fined a substansial amount for changing the conditions.

I stay in touch with Howard and Sister about two or three times a week.
They probably lived in Bonifay when you stayed with them, they live on the ranch in Marianna now in her mom and dads old house.

Matt and Sister were adopted by George Dryden when they were older, he was one of the heirs to the Kodak Fortune.
Nanny and George always treated me great.

Whats your last name dude, hell I may know you.

   I remember hearing about that rodeo ..... from bigL62 #13853  8/22/2011 8:45:48 PM
I don't think I was there but I remember hearing about it. Last name Miller. Was there a big rodeo in Oneonta, AL? I know I came back down in that part of the country for that rodeo and Athens GA. Good trip for me. I won Oneonta and placed 3rd/4th at Athens. Howard was judging Athens.



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