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Unique rodeo to feature Mexican culture

By CHUCK BALLARO - | Dec 16, 2020


The rodeos most people are familiar with here in the United States feature a lot of competition with a little entertainment.

In Mexican tradition, a rodeo is exactly the opposite — a lot of entertainment and a little competition with the latter optional.

This Saturday, from 4 to 10 p.m., Arma Promotions will present such a rodeo, featuring a band of some renown as well as other performers at the Lee Civic Center.

Among those scheduled to perform are Banda Los Recorditos, Graciela Beltran, a Mexican-American singer and actress; el Chapo de Sinaloa, a Mexican singer and actor; and T3rcer Elemento.

It will be the second such rodeo in the area in less than a month.

The first was held at the Lee County posse Arena and it was such a rousing success that it may become a regular feature at the venue, which would be great news for the arena, a non-profit organization designed to give young people a place to ride.

However, the agreement between the arena and county requireds that company looking to book the arena must wait 45 days between performances before they can return, said Sherry Groff, arena president.

Groff said the arena held these types of events years ago. Arma Promotions approached them a few months ago about bringing them back.

“The first rodeo went really well. They had a big crowd. Hopefully, this one is going to go well as well,” Groff said. “If all goes well for them, they will ask to put on regular rodeos.”

Angelica Reyna, at Arma Productions, said her company has a good relationship with civic center management and was able to book the venue for that night, though it was to be determined whether it will be held indoors or outdoors.

Groff said many of the entertainers fly in and perform as part of a tour like those here in the U.S. At the last show they had someone who looked like Selena, the late Tejano singer.

“I saw a video of her. I’m telling you if there is a twin to Selena, this girl is a 100 percent twin ands she sounds just like her,” Groff said. “They say she’s a big entertainer from Mexico. I can see why. Even the fans call her Selena.”

At such rodeos, a big stage is typically set up inside an arena. If they have bulls, they buck a couple bulls, have an entertainer, then another couple bulls, and so on, Groff said, which is how the rodeo at the Posse Arena went, since it is a rodeo-style venue.

The rodeo there had bulls and riders from Mexico compete, where the riders had their legs tied to the bull, which was led into the ring by handlers, and rode with no hands (not recommended). There will be no bull riding at the civic center.

Those who attend dress their best, with many of the women wearing stylish dresses, all in tune with the culture of the Mexican people.

“It brings in a different culture. The Cracker Day Rodeo celebrates the ranch life and this brings in their culture and they do things a little different,” Groff said.

Tickets are $45 for general admission, $50 and $250 for VIP.

The Lee Civic Center is at 11831 Bayshore Road, North Fort Myers. For more information, visit www.armapromotions.com or call 305-247-2789.

The Lee County Posse Arena is at 17401 Palm Creek Drive.