Gilroy Rodeo tickets on sale

Now that the Garlic Festival has come and gone, it’s about time for Gilroy’s next weekend event. The Gilroy Rodeo is returning after a 62-year hiatus.

Tickets are now on sale for the Aug. 11 and 12 rodeo at By keeping ticket prices low, along with offering free parking and $5 beer, rodeo organizer Erik Martin aims to make the event at 2365 Dunlap Ave. both affordable and family-friendly.

“The whole idea is to make so that you can bring your whole family for $40 a day,“ Martin said. “Where else can you go for $40 a day?”

Getting to the point where they can sell tickets has been a rocky road. Securing all the permits from Santa Clara County for security, traffic, bleachers and everything else under the sun has been similar to staying on top of a bucking bronc.

Radio ads for the Gilroy Rodeo began two weeks ago. Martin hopes that the reach of the ads, spanning the Bay Area, Sacramento, Modesto, into the Central Valley, and south toward Salinas, will help broaden interest in the revived Gilroy Rodeo.

Advance tickets cost $20, kids ages 12 and younger get in for free, and the parking is free. Tickets sold at the gate are $25. Tickets for an Aug. 11 dance are available at the gate for $25. The rodeo will donate proceeds from the dance, set for 7-10pm, to breast cancer research.

“People have had ideas, like charging $35 for both days, but the county wants to know whether it will be 5,000 people per day or 10,000 people throughout the weekend—they want to know exactly how many people will be there,” Martin said. “They’re worried about the traffic and security, so they want to know exactly what the numbers will be.”

Social media has been a boon for the Gilroy Rodeo. Within the last 28 days, almost 40,000 people have viewed the rodeo’s Facebook page, while 14,000 have checked it out.

Earlier this week Martin was still working out which beer distributor the rodeo will contract with. The choice between Bottomley Distributing company out of Milpitas and DBI Beverage in San Jose will determine what kind of brew the rodeo will serve since Bottomley serves Anheuser Busch products and DBI distributes Coors beer, a cowboy favorite.

Martin will not let his personal preference for Coors dictate his decision. “When it’s hot outside, and the beer’s cold, you don’t worry about it,” he said.

Get your tickets at


  1. Rodeo is condemned by nearly every major animal welfare organization in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand, due to its inherent cruelty. Rodeo is not a “sport”–that implies willing, evenly-matched participants. Rodeo does not qualify. Rodeo is an exercise in DOMINATION, closely related to the sexual harassment (and worse) of women now dominating the news. They both need to stop.

    And more than a little ironic that one of the most macho activities on the planet would be raising monies for breast cancer research. “Blood money,” some would call it.

    Most of rodeo is bogus from the git-go. REAL working ranch hands never routinely rode bulls, or wrestled steers, or rode bareback, or practiced calf roping (babies!) as a timed event. Nor did they put flank straps on the animals, nor work them over in the holding chutes with painful electric prods. Some “sport”!

    Consider this statement from world-renowned animal behaviorist Dr. Temple Grandin:

    “The single worst thing you can do to an animal emotionally is to make it feel afraid. Fear is so bad for animals I think it’s worse than pain.” That alone should be enough reason to outlaw this abuse. Rodeo animals are “prey” animals. As such, they fear for their very lives when roped, ridden, wrestled, chased, jumped on, dragged or otherwise handled roughly. And what a terrible message to send to impressionable young children (not to mention insensitive adults) about the proper and humane treatment of animals.

    Until that happy day, BOYCOTT ALL RODEOS and their sponsors.

  2. Animals used in rodeo are subjected to abusive conditions in order to guarantee they’ll perform as expected by the paying public. Without the use of spurs, tail-twisting, and bucking straps cinched around their abdomens and groins, these frightened and often docile animals typically wouldn’t even buck. The rodeo experience for animals consists of electric prods, twisted necks, and being violently slammed into the ground. “Retirement” is a one way trip to the slaughterhouse.

    Rodeo should be put out to pasture.

  3. Rodeos are hideously cruel and violent. Pitting “man vs. beast” should have been left behind in the gladiator age. These are innocent, docile farm animals that would never willingly place their bodies in harm’s way. Anybody can access the DCA Rodeo Reporting forms as part of the CA Public Records Act. You can read from the reports- these animals suffer massive injuries, many of them dying in the process. THESE ATROCITIES ARE 100% AVOIDABLE. PLEASE stop supporting and glorifying this disgustingly cruel bloodsport.

  4. I can’t wait to go today! It’s going to be good fun!!! For all the nay sayers…..don’t go! This isn’t a bull fight for gods sake.

  5. Rodeos will definitely be gone in the next 5 years, and hopefully sooner. Society will not condone the horrors that animals tortured in rodeos must endure – electric prods, taunting, bull hooks and ultimately injury, infection, suffering and death. Humans should find a sport that involves willing HUMAN participants ~

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