In rodeos, as in life, it pays to stay positive, no matter what misfortune comes your way. And in the helter-skelter of rodeo action, fate can strike with the ferocity and suddenness of a bull’s buck.
Anybody listening to announcer Warren Allin at the high schools rodeo in Maple Creek, would not be surprised to learn that such positivity is one of his guiding principles.
Throughout the June 17-20 event he offered encouragement and praise in generous portions, sometimes doing so with humour, creating a feelgood atmosphere at the High Chaparral Arena. Often he urged to crowd to join in.
“How about a round of applause for all our young cowboys” or “let’s cheer these girls on” were typical exhortations. On Sunday, as Maple Creek rookie Lily Wilson charged to an 18.044 time in the barrels, he called out: “Ride Lily, ride!”
After the rodeo had finished, and he had descended from the announcer’s booth, Allin spoke briefly to the News-Times about how much he enjoyed coming to Maple Creek.
“Maple Creek has always been a hot-bed for rodeos,” he said.
As a former bull rider, he knows only too well the ups and downs of being a contestant. It gives him an empathy for what the young athletes experience.
“I always try to be positive,” he said. “I focus on the good.”
Allin said mishaps were part of life, and could always be turned into opportunities.
As the rodeo wound to its conclusion on Sunday, Allin heaped praise on organizers, sent best wishes to cowboys and cowgirls going on to Canadians and Nationals, and wished everyone a great summer.
“See you down the trail,” he said.