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Mutton Bustin’ State Champion Named At Range Days Rodeo

Chynna Lockett

South Dakota is a state that’s known for rodeos. The annual Range Days Rodeo at the Central States Fair had competitions for riders young to old.

Children between the ages of 3 to 6 joined in the State Championship Mutton Bustin’ competition in which they rode a sheep-bareback-for as long as they could. The finalists performed in front of the crowd at Range Days.  

People filled the bleachers at Range Days rodeo on Saturday night. Mutton Bustin’ was the first completion of the evening. Children mounted their sheep and rode them across the arena for as long as they could. 7 year old Adley Aman was the winner. He rode his sheep until the judges pulled him off.

Aman is a young cowboy of few words.   He says his favorite part of riding sheep is, "holding on and winning.”  He says he wants to be a cowboy when he grows up and, “ride bulls.”  He says he’s going to ride bulls, “when I get bigger. The same size as my dad.”

Aman was awarded a new belt buckle for winning the state championship.

Jeff Jundt works with the Range Days Rodeo. He says the event is becoming more popular among both farm and city kids.  

“I think it helps you grow up to be in front of a large crowd of people. I’ve been doing thing this as a young kid too. It’s just a lot of fun. To watch your teammates and everything else win, that’s what it’s all about. I mean, it’s a family ordeal,” says Jundt.

He says the competition is thrilling for the kids.

“To get on a sheep at 3 to 6 years old is a scary feeling, but man, they just have a blast. And the parents have more fun than the kids do I do believe,” Jundt says.

The next Mutton Bustin’ competition will be held during the 2016 Stock Show in January.