For many, Labor Day weekend signifies summer's end. This past weekend, thousands of residents and visitors enjoyed the Williams Labor Day PRCA Rodeo staged at the Bob Dean Rodeo Grounds and Saturday's parade along Route 66, in addition to dances and live entertainment offered by various businesses. Thanks to all that was offered, summer certainly ended with a bang in Williams.
The Labor Day Rodeo has been a Williams tradition since 1941. It continued until sometime in the early '80s, and returned in 1994. Countless volunteers make this event possible. However, longtime Williams residents Bob and Peggy Dean - former rodeo stars themselves - are the dual force behind the scenes that make this rodeo happen annually. Along with the time and efforts of the Williams Rodeo Committee, Williams-Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce and Bob and Peggy, the rodeo continues to delight fans of all ages as they gather to watch past and future world champions compete.
The Williams Labor Day PRCA Rodeo is huge. Since the inception of the Justin Best Ground Award, Williams has won this award seven times. Williams also has the distinction of being named one of the top six rodeos in the nation in 2003. Williams is in the Turquoise Circuit and this year Williams was the final rodeo of the season. The top circuit cowboys were here to gather more points for that Circuit Race to the finals.
Throughout northern Arizona, numerous events were offered. Air enthusiasts enjoyed the show at the Valle Airport and Planes of Fame's third annual "Thunder Over the Coconino" Fly-In, classic car show and chili cook-off. The 24th Annual Grand Canyon Music Festival opened Saturday and continues through Sept. 16.
In Flagstaff, the 58th Annual Coconino County Fair was offered over the weekend. In addition to live entertainment, livestock auctions, gardening competitions and more, Brown's Amusement provided a carnival. If you had a great time riding Brown's carnival rides, or if you missed the festivities of the fair, you will have a second chance to visit the carnival. Brown's Amusement will offer carnival rides at the Bob Dean Rodeo Grounds tomorrow through Sunday.
The carnival is co-sponsored by the city of Williams and the Williams-Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce. Save money by purchasing advance tickets by the end of today at the chamber of commerce or Williams Recreation Center. For more information on future events coming to Williams, visit
www.williamsfestivals.com. And hats off to our volunteers for making Williams the place to be year 'round!