78th XIT Rodeo and Reunion

By Jordan Chavez | jchavez@kamr.com

Published 08/08 2014 07:44PM

Updated 08/08 2014 08:04PM

DALHART--

The XIT Rodeo is put on by the professional Rodeo and Cowboy Association.

Not only is it a rodeo, it's also a reunion.

XIT Chicken Feed Director John Bezner says "It was started 78 years ago and it was done in commemoration of the cowboys who worked on the XIT ranch and it's just turned into a big celebration of the western traditions."

The event has some traditions as well.

Bezner says "We have the world's largest free barbecue. That's the main tradition we have. Of course, the rodeo. We have a Thursday night feed and a Friday night feed...all free."

Another tradition includes a parade happening tomorrow morning.

Bezner says "The theme this year is Riding and Roping, Praying and Hoping. We picked that theme earlier in the spring when we hadn't had rain for almost four years. Well, very little rain in four years. And it fit where we were at during the time."

XIT Barbecue Director Josh Vogel says his favorite tradition is the lighting of a big barbecue.

XIT Barbecue Director Josh Vogel says "We have to collect wood over the year for this barbecue go on. We have two good size pits that are three feet wide, five feet deep and 70 feet long. There's two of them. And we end up stacking the wood about 12 feet high."

For people who have attended the rodeo in the past, they might see some changes. The facility has received some upgrades like all new bucking shoots and a new press box.

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