Wednesday night means it’s roping time at G. Rollie

It started again and every Wednesday night, its the same routine. Hook up the trailer, load up the horse and the roping gear and head out to the old G. Rollie White Complex. There is a small group of dedicated persons who have continued a tradition started more than 20 years ago. They gather each week starting around the beginning of March and try their hand at team roping a steer in a friendly local competition. The McCulloch County Roping Club decided it needed an organized meeting here in the county. Several ropers were members of other area clubs and the start of the McCulloch group was a natural decision. One local roper, James Allen Williams, remembers the days before the club even formed. “I was roping with a club down in Mason back when this club first got started,” he said. “There were a lot of different ropers back then, many of whom were just kids, and now they are all grown up.” Williams is just one of the dozen or so regulars who ropes each Wednesday. The small group has leased the G. Rollie White Complex from the Brady Chamber of Commerce and in return, they perform regular maintenance on the rodeo arena and keep the grounds in working condition. “A lot of people think we are just out there playing,” said acting club president Steve Hendley. “What most don’t realize is the amount of upkeep we do on a weekly basis. “It is just like anything else, if it is not used, it will end up being overgrown with weeds, rusting and eventually become an eyesore. That arena is one of the best in the state, and we feel very fortunate to have it here in Brady.” The club members meet on a regular basis and welcome outside guests and visitors. “We all pay monthly dues to rope out here, and anyone who is interested is welcome to come out and rope with us,” said Hendley. “There is a guest fee and if they want to join the club, there is a onetime family membership fee of $100, but that allows any member of that immediate family to rope as long as they pay their monthly dues. If someone joins the club, the annual dues are $180 which helps with the costs of equipment and general maintenance.” According to Williams, the onetime fee used to be for each individual roper, but several families in the past have had both parents and children roping, and the change was made to make it more economical for an entire family to come out and rope. The Wednesday night sessions are filled with good-natured ribbing and friendly competition. Usually at least once a month, they will host a jackpot roping with prize money going to the top ropers. In recent years, the club has had several ropers compete in team competitions around the area and many have earned respectable reputations as being quality ropers. Roy Beavers, who competes in the seniors division, is reportedly the top ranked senior header in the state. “We’re just a bunch of guys (and girls) out here having fun,” said Hendley. “Anyone is welcome to come out and watch from the grandstands or if they have a horse and know a little about roping, they are welcome to come out and join in.” The Wednesday night sessions start at 7 p.m. For more information about the club, contact Hendley at 597-4971.

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