Martin Luther King, Jr. RODEO
Dr. King, Lu Vason, and William "Bill" Pickett All Are Honored
By Wayne Trujillo - Denver Urban Spectrum
This year’s National Western Stockshow is a bonanza. Denver’s famed conclave of cowboys and cattle will boast a colorful display of rodeo excellence heavy on diversity and substance. Mexican buckaroos will alternate with Black vaqueros. On Jan. 16, at 7 p.m., the stars are set to align into a stunning allegory of Black culture’s past, present, and future.
At the Denver Coliseum, the National Western Stockshow promises an evening where, "Stock Show fans can partake in the history and heritage of America's black cowboy as top black rodeo athletes and Buffalo Soldiers headline the National Western's first-ever Martin Luther King African-American Heritage Rodeo." The evening represents a personal triumph for Lu Vason as the city celebrates the great Civil Rights leader’s struggles and triumphs. Vason waged his own struggle for Black equality and recognition of an influential and integral aspect of African-American culture; the Black cowboys and cowgirls who historically took a back-seat to the Hollywood ideals of Western heroes.