The 20th annual Professional Cowboy Association Rodeo Finals will be in Biloxi on Wednesday through Jan. 24, with cowboy action and concerts at the Coast Coliseum.
This is the final round for the 10-month series with 15 riders competing in bareback riding, barrel racing, breakaway roping, bull riding, calf roping, saddle bronc, steer wrestling, team roping and more.
At press time, Dustin Boquet held a slight lead in the competition. Blake Germany, the leading contender for Rookie Champion, was No. 5 in the overall competition. Representing the Coast was Moss Point's Dylan Emerson in the No. 15 position.
Who comes out on top will be decided in Biloxi. Wednesday will be a busy night with shootout action from 6 to 9 p.m. Finals will be 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday.
This year will be the PCA's first year to add live music to the rodeo, with top-notch entertainment Thursday through Saturday. All concerts will follow the rodeo action and are free with rodeo admission. A $10 "Dirt Pass" admits fans to the front of the stage.
Acie Campbell, PCA board member, said the groups were chosen to fit the demographic of their fan base and to offer added family fun.
"Rodeo is the No. 1 spectator sport in America," Campbell said. "You have a lot of them, and it's the same demographic that listens to Christian and country radio."
Wednesday night's concert will feature the Christian group Finding Favour.
It's a country music double bill Thursday night with Jon Pardi ("Missin' You Crazy," "Up All Night,") and the Brothers Osborne, whose song "Stay a Little Longer" is climbing in the Top 10.
On Friday night, it's the five-piece Irish Christian act Rend Collective ("You Will Never Run").
On Saturday, it'll be Academy of Country Music's Vocal Duo of the Year nominees Dan & Shay ("Nothin' Like You," "19 You + Me").
The rodeo also will offer special events, such as a BB gun exhibition and shootout gun giveaway, an ice cream alley and more than 100 exhibitors. The state will present a Cowboy Educational Program on Jan. 20 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. featuring a mini-rodeo, guest speakers and conservation education. Also, there will be a University of Mobile church service at 10 a.m. Sunday.
Exhibition doors will open at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, 5 p.m. Friday and at noon Sunday.
Tickets are $18, $25 or $35 per day. Two-day passes are $56, three-day passes are $84 and four-day passes are $112. Tickets are available at the Coliseum box office or online at www.ticketmaster.com.