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MEET AND GREET ’EM

    It’s your fault if you don’t connect with your favorite rodeo athlete during the National Finals Rodeo.
    And you don’t have to buy a ticket to the 10-day rodeo to meet them.
    Several will attend Saturday’s Charity Bowling Tournament at the Gold Coast at 11 a.m. The event is a joint fund-raiser for the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund and the Las Vegas chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities.
    Among those scheduled to attend are: Will Lowe, Bobby Mote, former world bull riding champion Gary Leffew, former NFR qualifier Kelly Wardell and NFR announcer Boyd Polhamus.
    Also making appearances will be Dallas Cowboys defensive back Roy Williams, NASCAR veteran Sterling Marlin, and performers Susan Anton and Kristy Lee Cook.
OTHER APPEARANCES
    Most NFR contestants have appearances scheduled throughout the Cowboy Christmas Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center. That’s free too.
The following is a partial list of other scheduled autograph sessions:
MONDAY
    Noon-1 p.m.: Team ropers, Golden Nugget Grand Event Center
TUESDAY
    11 a.m.-noon: Speed Williams, Fred Whitfield, Billy Etbauer, Lowe, Josh Peek
Royce Ford; MGM Grand lobby
    Noon-1 p.m.: Bull riders, Silverton Casino Lodge
    1-2 p.m.: Bareback riders, Gold Coast Showroom
WEDNESDAY
    Noon-1 p.m.: Barrel racers, Excalibur rotunda
    1-2 p.m.: Steer wrestlers, Hooters Casino
THURSDAY
    11 a.m.-noon: Williams, Whitfield, Etbauer, Lowe, Peek, Ford; MGM Grand lobby
FRIDAY
    Noon-1 p.m.: Calf ropers, Mirage (near sports book)
    1-2 p.m.: Saddle bronc riders, Place Station Jack’s Pub

WHO HAD MORE TRY?
    Tim Shirley and Blue Wings of Kesler Rodeo hit the turf midway through their bareback ride in Friday night. But Shirley of Conifer, Colo., never let go of the rigging and Blue Wings jumped to its feet to complete the ride
    Not sure which competitor showed more try.
    They were scored for 57.5 with re-ride option, which Shirley took and returned to score 83.50 on Apple Pie of Brookman Rodeo.

GO WESTERN
    More businesses need to follow the lead of the Thomas & Mack Center and the Las Vegas Review-Journal by going “western” during the NFR.
    Jeans — even those expensive frou-frou ones that are made to look worn — are permitted and western shirts are encouraged.

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