Should rodeo be Montana's official state sport? Why not?

There is an effort underway right now to make rodeo the official state sport of Montana. A group of Montanans are supporting an effort to pass a ballot initiative during the 2024 elections that would do just that.

According to a press release sent by the folks backing the ballot initiative, the language has now been sent to the Montana Attorney General's office for review. The group filed the ballot initiative with the Montana Secretary of State early in July.

Here's how the language in the proposed ballot initiative currently reads:

The American rodeo is both the embodiment of the historic Montana way of life and a celebration of our unique western culture. The rodeo encompasses all the values that make Montana great, including rugged individualism, hard work, and responsible stewardship.

Tony Hudson of Stevensville and James Brown of Dillon are two of the Montanans backing the effort.

Tony Hudson: I grew up in a Montana ranch family. Having worked with livestock and cowboys all of my life, I understand the social and cultural importance of the American Rodeo. For many Montana towns, the rodeo is the community event of the year. This is because it brings together a showcase of the Montana way of life, while preserving family traditions and western values. It is also one of the few sports where both the animals and the cowboys and cowgirls are the featured athletes.

Hudson filed the initiative with the Secretary of State.

James Brown says the initiative makes sense.

Jim Brown: Designating the American Rodeo as the official sport of Montana makes sense. Rodeo offers the truest form of competition and fosters competitor and community camaraderie. I can see no more appropriate way to honor the history of rodeo and its place in Montana history than to make rodeo the Treasure State’s sport.

The ballot initiative supporters will create a ballot initiative committee named ‘Preserve the American West”.

For more information about the proposed ballot initiative, contact Tony Hudson at  406-550-1650 or email contact(at)

National High School Finals Rodeo-Finals

National High School Finals Rodeo-Finals

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