The Lost Dutchman Days Rodeo, to be held Feb. 28- March 1 at the Apache Junction Rodeo Grounds, 1590 E. Lost Dutchman Blvd., at Tomahawk Road, is a full eight-event rodeo, with professional cowboys and cowgirls competing for prize money beginning at 1:30 p.m. each day. In 2018 entrants received more than $19,000 in prize money. It is a professional rodeo, sanctioned by the Grand Canyon Pro Rodeo Association (gcpra.net).
The classic events include bareback, calf roping, saddlebronc, steer wrestling, ladies breakaway roping, barrel racing, team roping and the crowd favorite of bull riding.
The rodeo annually gets 400-plus entries, enough so that the team roping is to be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 27. Slack, for those contestants not in the performances, is 9 a.m. Sunday. There is no charge for admission for the Sunday team roping or Sunday slack.
There is free parking and a $2 admission charge to enter the AJ Rodeo Grounds and Event Center, with gates open 9 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 9 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sunday. Amenities for spectators’ comfort and enjoyment during their visit to Lost Dutchman Days and the Event Center include covered, metal bleachers seating for 2,000 to 2,500 people; and a 1,200-square-foot concession and restroom facility.
Rodeo advance ticket sales — $13 adult and $8 children 10 and under (tickets cost $2 more at the gate) — are available at the Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce, 567 W. Apache Trail, 480-982-3141; Crazy Horse Saddle Shop, 1484 W. Apache Trail, 480-671-0381; or the AJ News, 879 N. Plaza Drive Building C Suite No. 101, Apache Junction, 480-982-6397.
New this year, $15 adult and $10 child rodeo tickets can be bought online, with a $2.24-per-ticket fee, at lostdutchmandays.org/tickets.
The rodeo features hundreds of contestants, all of whom put up an entry fee to win the coveted Lost Dutchman Days Rodeo prize money and belt buckles. Entry details at gcpra.net or lostdutchmandays.org.
Lost Dutchman Days carnival at the Event Center features 30-plus rides and attractions. The Browns Amusements carnival tickets for Lost Dutchman Days are for sale 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday at the Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce, 567 W. Apache Trail. They are $20 for an all-day pass. Cash only.
Apache Creek Golf Course, 3401 S. Ironwood Drive in Apache Junction, will be hosting a charitable golf tournament Feb. 1 sponsored by the Lost Dutchman Days Committee.
The cost of $75 entry per person or $280 per team includes golf, golf cart and lunch. There will also be a raffle and prizes. Sign-in starts at 7 a.m., shotgun start at 8 a.m. The field is limited to the first 132 players. Hole sponsorships are also available for $45/hole. All proceeds go towards “Putting Smiles on Kid’s Faces.”
For more information, call Heidi Erickson at 480-603-6819. View a golf tourney flyer at http://www.lostdutchmandays.org/events-2/
All team applications can be printed, filled out and then emailed to Heidi Erickson or firstname.lastname@example.org. A link for team applications is also at http://www.lostdutchmandays.org/events-2/.
Johnsonville bratwursts, drinks and live entertainment are planned at the noon-8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, Lost Dutchman Days Annual Bratwurst and Beer party at the Apache Junction Elks Lodge No. 2349, 2455 N. Apache Trail.
Entertainment includes the following bands and show times: Noon-2 p.m., Hungry 5 Plus Polka; 2:30-4:30 p.m., Sylvia’s AZ Polka Band; and 5-8 p.m., Roadhouse Wranglers.
Three days of free entertainment and a Cowboy Church service are planned at the Carnival Stage at the Event Center at the Apache Junction Rodeo Grounds, including:
The Lost Dutchman Days rodeo dance with the Canyon State Band is 7-11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, at the Elks Lodge No. 2349, 2455 N. Apache Trail. It is a non-smoking event. Must be 21 years old to attend. Dance admission is $5.
Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce’s organizers call the annual Lost Dutchman Days Parade the kick-off to Apache Junction’s signature winter event.
The parade is a free event beginning 9 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 29, in downtown Apache Junction.
The route runs between Idaho Road and Ironwood Drive on Apache Trail.
The parade begins at Phelps Drive and travels westbound toward Ironwood Drive, and then returns.
For more information on the parade, call 480-982-3141 or go to ajchamber.com.