After two years of shut downs due to COVID-19 health regulations the sun certainly came out the weekend of March 19-20 when the gates at the North Thompson Fall Fairgrounds in Barriere opened up and livestock trailers started arriving in readiness for the BC Team Cattle Penning Association’s Double Header event at the North Thompson Agriplex.
Numerous large green steel paneled pens were set up in the parking lot on the west side of the Agriplex to house 310 black cows who arrived on the Friday for the weekend of competition. Each of the large pens provided large bales of hay, bug tubs of fresh water, and dry ground to sleep on.
BC Team Cattle Penning Association president Spencer Gamache of Quesnel said his association was extremely excited to finally get back into the team penning competition arena.
“This will be our first penning competition in two years,” said Gamache, “We have been very excited about finally getting back to competitions, and especially coming to the Agriplex in Barriere.”
Up until 2019 the association annually held two competitions each spring at the Agriplex, one in March and the other in April. Now they are looking forward to getting back to that routine, and are currently booked to return again this year on the last weekend of April.
Gamache says he was very happy with the March turnout, being their first event after two years.
“We had 92 competitors and 110 horses, which made for 500 teams of three riders entered into the two day competition,” said the president. “All of those 500 teams enjoyed an exciting and fast moving weekend vying for part of the $50,000 pot that was on the table. We had people from Vancouver Island, Grande Prairie, Edmonton, Calgary and everywhere in between. We are very happy, and we love the facilities here at the fairgrounds in Barriere.”
“On behalf of all BCTCPA cattle penners, we would like to say a huge thank you to the North Thompson Agriplex for allowing us to use your amazing facility – we so appreciate it,” posted Laurie Black-Haughton on the North Thompson Agriplex Facebook page, “The ground was perfect all weekend, and we had a wonderful show. We are blessed to be able to ride in your arena.”
North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association treasurer, Joanne Pettersen, commented, “We’re so happy to see the facility being used once again, it’s been a long time. This is just great.”
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