Addison Teigen has been riding horses since she was 2.
Now 10, Teigen got to show her horseback experience Saturday during the first event of the 2020 Campbell County Fair, the Betty Hough Memorial Youth Rodeo at Wrangler Arena.
Teigen has been doing rodeo since she was 7, and she and her horse, Forest, have been riding together since last year. The pair rode into the arena early to compete in the junior barrels competition.
With public health restrictions in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and with many of the county fair's more popular events canceled this year, the young wranglers are one of the few that still were allowed to happen.
Which was welcome for the young cowboys and cowgirls.
"It feels good to just be able to ride horses," Teigen said. "I make a lot of new friends doing this."
Sara Reed, a volunteer for the event, is the niece of Betty Hough, who the rodeo is now named for.
Hough served 25 years on the Campbell County Fair Board and was the 1965 national high school champion for breakaway roping. Hough also served as fair manager from 2006-12 and was awarded Fair Manager of the Year by the Rocky Mountain Association of Fairs.
Hough died in 2018 and Reed said her family wanted to honor her hard work and dedication to Campbell County with a tribute.
"Our entry fees are low and it's just an opportunity for these kids to come out and ride and have fun," Reed said. "It's a fun play day for everyone."
Korlyn Slattery, 15, said it's a good time for riders to practice their skills in the various competitions the rodeo puts on. Slattery, a sophomore at Moorcroft High School, competed in the senior barrels, senior flag race and dummy team roping.
"My favorite part is the fun that I have and the smiles on everybody's faces when you come back from a solid run," Slattery said. "I felt great out there, my horse did great."
Slattery has been doing rodeo for two years, which coincides with getting her horse, Sysco. Slattery said she plans to continue practicing and participating in rodeo events all through high school with her 12-year-old equine partner.
Nola Sessions, 6, rode the peewee events, including barrels, pole bending and a second-place finish in the stick horse race.
"She's been riding horses forever," said family friend Bonnie Brady. "She just kind of started doing rodeo this year."
Brady and Sessions were quick to point out the improvements the young rider has made to her horseback skills just at Saturday's youth rodeo.
"That was her fastest time ever!" Brady said.
"That was my fastest time ever!" echoed Sessions.
Brady said the fair and youth rodeo are nice ways to get kids out of the house and feel some sort of normalcy again.
"It's awesome. Just throw away the face mask and everybody just kind of gets to be themselves and kids get to just be kids," Brady said. "It's just good, clean fun."
Next on the agenda for the fair will be the Youth Horse Show at 8 a.m. Sunday followed by Campbell County Ranch Sorting at 1 p.m.