Members of the Fort Hays State University rodeo club recently met people from all across the world and introduced them to the western way of life when they assisted with a cowboy-style working retreat for an international delegation of managers from Siemens Energy, Inc., at The Oasis Ranch and Retreat in Plevna.
Fort Hays rodeo greeted Siemens staff from eight different countries and from all walks of life at the ranch. Countries represented included Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Holland, The Netherlands and Sweden.
Bronc Rumford, rodeo coach, said he got the club involved through his connections to The Oasis and friendship with its owners.
“I told them I could get my rodeo kids involved because they ride and rope,” he said. “That’s how we got involved.”
The Oasis and the rodeo club set up six different western teambuilding events for the Siemens executive teams to compete in: calf dressing, dummy roping, fence building, horse saddling, steer sorting and target shooting.
The events allowed the executives to get to know their co-workers from across the world all while experiencing cowboy culture.
Along with the events, Fort Hays cowboys and cowgirls entertained the guests in an exhibition ranch rodeo in which they tested their skills and rode bucking horses, roped and doctored calves, loaded calves into a trailer, barrel raced, trick roped and included the Seimens staff through a calf scramble and a three-legged barrel race.
Rodeo club members took on a variety of jobs at the retreat, including team leaders, event judges, ranch rodeo contestants and the announcer.
Dakota Milner, junior, was a team leader.
“I enjoyed showing them how to do various things and being competitive against the other teams,” Milner said.
“I learned that what I take for granted, other people wish they could do, too, and they find it very interesting.”
The rodeo team also competed at its second rodeo of the season last weekend at Pratt Community College.
Blair Jones, sophomore, was a mere 0.3 seconds from qualifying for the short-go, or championship round, in the steer wrestling with his 5.3-second run.
Cody Hamm, freshman, remains seventh in the saddle bronc riding regional standings from his performance at the first rodeo of the season.
The team travels next to Durant, Okla., for the Southeastern Oklahoma State University Rodeo, Oct. 6-8.