It does not seem possible that the rodeo is almost here, but Rocks Off saw a trail ride on the news this morning, so it must be true. If we were a TV instead of newspaper reporter, we would definitely lobby for the trail-ride assignment.
But besides trail rides, cookoffs, mutton-busting, the parade and all the other rodeo folderol, this year more than 100 Houston-area youth are competing to win RodeoHouston's first-ever "Rodeo Rockstar" contest. Those competing to win must not have a manager, record contract, or be otherwise tainted by the music business, but a handful of lucky winners will still get a chance to say that they performed alongside Alabama, Lady Antebellum, Blake Shelton and Kid Rock at this year's rodeo.
Perhaps more importantly, they'll also get some cash. The 10 leading vote-getters among the Junior (ages 6-15) and Youth (ages 16-21) divisions will perform in the preliminary round at 5 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, at the Kids Country Stage in Reliant Park. The five highest-scoring contestents in each division advance to the Rodeo Rockstar finals at the same time, same place on Tuesday, March 13.
Winners will be chosen by a panel of three judges; first-place winners in each division get $500 cash and probably a trophy. Second and third place pay out at $250 and $100, just like the real rodeo.
Voting for the preliminary Rodeo Rockstar ends at noon on the contest's Web site, so spend your lunch hour checking out some of Houston's ambitious and - we hope - talented young vocalists. Good luck to all the kids.