In 1945, some enterprising Pampa businessmen met at the Court House Café for coffee and came up with the idea of providing the public with some kind of entertainment where cowboys and cowgirls could show off their talents. Thus, the Top O’ Texas Rodeo Association was born.
The Top o’ Texas Rodeo has been held annually ever since except for 1970 when a tornado hit the arena destroying part of the stands on the east side. No performance was held in 1971 as an outbreak of Venezuelan Equine Encephalomyelitis quarantined the Panhandle livestock.
Many famous personalities have helped to give the Top O’ Texas Rodeo the name it has today. Famous Hollywood cowboy Monte Hale, Smiley Burnett, the Light Crust Dough Boys, Tex Ritter , Judy Lynn, Molly Bee, Reba McEntire, Christian singer Susie Luchsinger, Red Steagall, Vern Gosdin,Cooder Graw, Ty Murray, Tuff Hedeman, Larry Mahan, the Pike Peak Rangerettes and Santa Rosa Palomino Riding Club are just a few of the performers who have entertained rodeo fans over the years.
The Kid Pony Show started the same year as the rodeo. It continues today to give the younger cowboys and cowgirls a chance to develop their rodeo skills.
In 2008, the Top O’ Texas Rodeo was named the TCRA’s “Best New Rodeo”. The Top O’ Texas Rodeo Association Board of Directors was honored as “Committee of the year” in 2008 and again in 2009. “Highest Paying TCRA Rodeo” and TCRA Cowboys Choice Rodeo of the Year” honors were bestowed upon the Association in 2010 and “TCRA Rodeo of the Year” in 2012.
Many great cowboys and cowgirls of area, national and international fame have performed at the Top O’ Texas arena since that day in 1945 when those businessmen met over a cup of coffee at the old Court House Café on Kingsmill street. We are glad they did!
We have another great year of fast rodeo action planned for this year and loads of excitement. We will be posting updates on this web site as we go as the details are worked out. We look forward to seeing you this year at our main Rodeo event and other events we plan throughout the year.