Flying Heels Fourth of July Rodeo gets COVID variance |

Flying Heels Fourth of July Rodeo gets COVID variance

Grand County has granted a variance to the Flying Heels Arena for its Fourth of July Rodeo allowing up to 625 people, including staff, security and contestants, to participate in the rodeo this year.

Flying Heels Arena organizer Tish Linke said she’s been working with the county to expand capacity for the annual event in Granby.

Currently, the arena is being limited to 12% of its capacity, or around 325 spectators, which is lower than what the state allows for outdoor gatherings. The capacity of the arena is 2,500.

On its website, the Flying Heels Arena asked interested rodeo participants and spectators to reach out to the county and lobby for an increase in the number of people allowed.

“Swimming pools are allowed up to 50% (capacity),” Linke said of the limits. 

During the rodeo, social distancing will be required on rodeo grounds, and staff and volunteers will be required to wear masks.

A spokesperson for the county’s COVID-19 Response Team said the team worked closely with rodeo organizers for weeks to form a plan that promotes public safety while still allowing the arena to host a community event.

“We understand that this rodeo is important to the community,” said Alexis Kimbrough, COVID-19 response team spokesperson. “Whatever we can do to keep the community safe and also allow these events to happen is our main goal.”

The limit on the number of people will be enforced through traffic control at the rodeo gate by the Grand County Sheriff’s Office, and internal security that will track the number of people inside.

“We have a security team that (the county) made us hire,” Linke explained, adding she’s not sure how many people will want to show up. 

Kimbrough added that ushers will guide people through the various zones of the rodeo, whether that be the stands, concessions, the arena or elsewhere, to help ensure social distancing.

The rodeo gates will open at 5 p.m. for seating with tickets costing $15 for adults and $10 for children. Fireworks will follow the rodeo.

Linke added that since there is a limited capacity on spectators, the rodeo is looking for donations to help cover the cost of the fireworks. Donations can be sent to the Flying Heels Arena, PO Box 405, Granby.

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