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Up North: Great Northern Classic Rodeo is a Family Affair

September 05, 2017 10:40 PM

Barrel racing is just one of eight events that cowgirls saddle up for at the Great Northern Classic Rodeo. The event is also a favorite for the Balcer family.

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"We've been doing it our whole lives, so it's fun to be here," said Shelley Balcer.

The Balcer's are from Superior, but their interest in the rodeo started because of Grandma Balcer.

"It's been a wonderful event," said Cheryl Balcer. "It's great for the community. I've been involved for many years as a former queen, which she was drill team, and she was drill team and a former queen, so we've got a long history. We just love being here. It's our thing."

The family has carried down the tradition of attending this rodeo, making it more of a family bonding event.

"Part of this is just making it a big community event and a family affair per say," said Great Northern Classic Rodeo Vice President Arlyn Hunter-Johnson.

"I love that it's a small town rodeo. A lot of support goes into it. You know a lot of people and they come out and support you," said 2018 Great Northern Classic Rodeo Queen Elizabeth Johnson.

Aside from the Balcer's, it's also a family affair for the Slipka father-son duo who are calf ropers.

"Some people are home-bodies and like being home, I like sitting in the truck for 12 hours hauling to rodeos," said Pete Slipka.

The rodeo in Superior was one of the first rodeos Pete ever competed in and his father David has been attending since its maturation. Together, like many other rodeo families, they have made rodeoing a part of their lifestyle.

"In certain aspects we're competing against each other, but we're also practicing together, critiquing each other, and the opportunity to have it with my kids- well what parent wouldn't want that," said David Slipka.


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