The Valley Center Stampede Rodeo is organized solely by volunteers and remains one of only a few non-profit rodeos in the nation. With no permanent facilities available since inception in 2002, the Stampede Rodeo Committee takes on the monumental task of raising a high quality rodeo ground out of a dusty hay field, with costs reaching nearly $120,000. Despite the challenges, the rodeo committee takes great pride in the development of the rodeo grounds each year, receiving accolades from participants regarding the quality of the arena.
In addition to the high costs associated with not having permanent rodeo ground facilities, is the uncertainty from year-to-year of where our rodeo will be located. For many of those years, a local land owner generously granted the use of his land conveniently located next to the Valley Center Community Center, where the community festival has been traditionally held. However, due to the sale of that land in 2018, the rodeo committee turned to the Valley Center Parks & Recreation District (VCPRD) to discuss using Star Valley Park, home of the Valley Center Vaqueros (a local riding club). The partnership between the Stampede Rodeo and the VCPRD led to a five-year agreement between the two organizations, leading to a semi-permanent home for the rodeo. Once again, the community spirit of our quaint little town is evident through the generosity of our local people and organizations.
With a site secured, the 2018 Stampede Rodeo will mark the 17th year of bringing quality rodeo entertainment to our town and the neighboring communities of North San Diego County. This year we are proud to announce that the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) has sanctioned the Valley Center Stampede Rodeo as a professional rodeo. As such, the Stampede Rodeo will provide the first-ever professional rodeo to Valley Center!
The Stampede Rodeo is part of a community-wide effort to celebrate our town’s patriotism and western heritage over Memorial Day Weekend. The rodeo is made possible by the year-long efforts of the volunteer rodeo committee, the sponsorship of the Valley Center Optimist Club, the dedication of local volunteers, and the generous donations from local businesses. All committee members and organizers are volunteers and there are no paid positions associated with the Stampede Rodeo. Additionally, local organizations host other patriotic, western-themed events over the days leading up to Memorial Day and the spirit of community is ever present as we all share a common goal of bringing our community together for this annual tradition.
We are always looking for additional volunteers and financial support. If you are interested in volunteering or becoming an event sponsor, please contact us today.
One of the highlights each year is the crowning of the Valley Center Stampede Rodeo Queen, Junior Queen, Young Miss and Little Miss. The new Valley Center Rodeo Queen is crowned each April and represents the Valley Center Stampede Rodeo each May. To learn more about the pageant and see the current title holders, please visit the Rodeo Queen site.