We are deeply saddened by the recent closing of the 2020 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. The Rodeo has been a fabric of this community since 1932. Having to close early was extremely difficult as guests, volunteers, exhibitors, sponsors, rodeo athletes and entertainers look forward to the 20 days of the Rodeo each year. With the 2019 Rodeo providing an economic impact of $227 million and an economic activity of $391 million, we understand this is hard on many of us. With that, we want to outline our commitment to the community.
Commercial/Retail Exhibitors Commercial exhibitor refunds for March 11 – March 22 are currently in process. We know that many commercial exhibitors rely on the Rodeo for their livelihood, and there has been an overwhelming amount of support from those interested in supporting our 2020 vendors. A list of shopping and dining vendors with their websites and/or social media pages can be found on our website.
Livestock and Horse Show Exhibitors Our exhibitors work year-round to prepare their projects to show each year. For the School Art and Lamb and Goat competitions that were held, exhibitors will be paid their guaranteed premiums which they earned. The Rodeo will be refunding all entry fees for livestock and horse show exhibitors who were unable to compete. Additionally, the Rodeo is working on a plan to further support our junior exhibitors, including heifer exhibitors. As a part of this plan, we will be having an online auction in place of the planned junior auctions. These details will be announced shortly.
In addition to these online auctions, we have setup a page where individuals can donate specifically to the junior exhibitors. Donations may be made on our website.
Rodeo Athletes Rodeo athletes that were able to compete in the first three Super Series events will be paid any money they earned.
Scholarships, Educational Program Grants, Graduate Assistantships The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has committed more than $500 million to Texas youth and education. Each year, the Rodeo awards more than 800 scholarships. In the fall, the Rodeo committed to award $14.2 million in scholarships, $3.7 million in educational program grants and $662,000 in graduate assistantships in 2020. The Rodeo will honor these commitments.
We’ve received numerous requests to donate to our educational fund. Donations may be made on our website.
Sponsors We are grateful for our official Show sponsors. These partners not only provide financial support, they also stand with us in times like these. Sponsors will have the option to donate or be refunded any unearned sponsorship fees.
Ticket Buyers Season and individual ticket holders, who bought from the Rodeo and its ticketing provider AXS, will have the option get a refund or donate back to the Rodeo for the March 11 – 22 performances. Season ticket holders also have the option to rollover their balance to 2021.
Carnival ticket buyers will have the option of rolling over their unused tickets to 2021 or requesting a refund. Those that roll over their unused ticket to 2021 will be provided an additional 20% of their balance in ride and game tickets, along with one free grounds admission per account.
We are aware that there are other decisions to be made and to be announced. We will continue to provide additional information as it becomes available. Updates will be posted at rodeohouston.com/2020.
We look forward to the 2021 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo to continue to promote agriculture, education, entertainment and Western heritage. Our plan is to make 2021 the best Show ever!