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Lake County Rodeo Event Announcer
Ted Dwyer

Above the sound of bucking bulls and flying riders is the voice of Ted Dwyer, a familiar cowboy for Lake County Rodeo enthusiasts. He’s the announcer, the guy who holds the show together, the man with the microphone above the Rodeo Arena.

 

The Lake County Rodeo Association is glad to welcome Ted back to Lakeport.  He always does a great job for us, he knows the CCPRA participants very well and is always adding many personal comments about them.  This definitely adds to the spectator’s enjoyment of the entire show.

Rodeo announcing seems like a healthy and natural progression for the 55-year-old Dwyer, a man that’s been deeply rooted in rodeo since the age of 15 when he started riding bareback and saddle bronc. That evolved into rodeo bull riding, a change he didn’t tell his parents about at first, but they suspected after finding more prize money than usual stuffed into his Wrangler pockets at night. After spontaneously jumping the chutes in ’74 to free a fellow cowboy stuck in his bull rope after being flung from a bull, Dwyer found his niche — bull fighting — what he continued until he was badly injured by Zorro the bull. He became a rodeo announcer soon after in 1988, work he’s flourished in and continues to enjoy to this day.

 

While working an advertising promotion job for rodeo committees out of Colorado through the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, the announcer for a rodeo in Vail, Colorado, came down with laryngitis. The rodeo committee there asked Dwyer to take his spot in the announcer’s booth. He accepted.

 

Since ’88, Dwyer has announced for about 35 rodeos a year — summer road trips to rodeos across the country with his 14-year-old traveling partner son.

 

Dwyer has gathered a lot of recognition from the cowboy world for his work, winning the International Pro Rodeo Association” Western Region Announcer of the Year award, covering 12 states and two provinces of Canada, seven years in a row, and announcing for the California Cowboys Pro Rodeo Association’s State Finals in Redding three times.

 

Beyond the awards, some of his greatest compliments are being invited back to many rodeos year after year.

 

The Lake County Rodeo is a gathering place for friends and neighbors that might not see each other for years beyond rodeo weekend. “It’s a reunion for everyone, and that’s what a rodeo is about,” Dwyer said. “It’s a place where people come to congregate.”

Dwyer hopes his work as a rodeo announcer helps give rodeo-goers a feeling for the way the Wild West was, while also blending in an understanding of the difficulties of the modern day cowboy. Dwyer wants people to leave the stands seeing the cowboy for what he is — the hero of the rodeo.

 

“If I can turn a rodeo spectator into a rodeo fan, that tickles me plum to death,” Dwyer said.

Rodeo is also rooted deep in his 14-year-old son Michael’s blood, having traveled with his father to rodeos since he was a baby. Dwyer recalls memories of some of their first rodeos together — Michael snug in a baby backpack on his side while announcing. Michael started riding steers in junior rodeos last year. During the winter months Michael is on a travel Ice Hockey team called the Fresno Jr. Monsters that won the 2011California Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA) State Championships while, Dad announces Youth & College Hockey games as well.

 

“If all he gets out of it is the time we spent together — that’s the most important thing,” Dwyer said. “He’s the best traveling partner I ever had. Actually, he’s my hero.”

Dwyer’s favorite part of rodeo announcing is its opening ceremony, where he gets to explain the sport’s history and watch the people in the stands rise up to pay tribute to the American flag.

 

“It’s an American sport,” Dwyer said. “It’s family entertainment and it’s one of the few sports now that you can afford to take the whole family to. Rodeo has changed a lot over the years but it has maintained its roots.”

 

Happy Trails - I hope to see you at the Lake County Rodeo in Lakeport, California.