The Curry County Events Center has landed “the biggest and richest ranch rodeo in the world,” Manager Kevin Jolley told commissioners Tuesday.
Jolley said he’s been working for a couple months to negotiate and secure a commitment from the 2011 Resistol All-Around Ranch Rodeo, traditionally held in Waco, Texas.
“Never in my wildest dreams did I think we could get them to move to Clovis from Waco,” he said.
Jolley said it is the biggest ranch rodeo in the world and will “probably be the biggest economic impact for events that this community has ever seen.”
The rodeo will be held at the events center May 5-8.
Jolley said the event is expected to result in 1,600 hotel bookings, 400 per night, and advertisements featuring the events center and promoting the rodeo will be aired more than 100 times on RFD-TV leading up to the event.
“The word’s out there and Clovis, New Mexico is on the map as far as the equestrian world (is concerned),” he said.
The week before the rodeo, April 28 through May 1, the Joe’s Boot Shop Calf Roping will take place at the event center, resulting in 11 solid days of events and revenue for the community, Jolley said.
Jolley told commissioners it was no easy task wooing the event away from Waco, a community that he said makes a large financial investment in the event.
“I’m not opposed to stealing from anybody when it comes to events,” he said with a chuckle.
Commissioner Caleb Chandler commended Jolley on booking the event and said he recognized it took hard work to make it happen.
Chairman Bobby Sandoval pointed the event out as the success of the facility.
“This is a vindication really to those people when we started out that said the event center wouldn’t work,” Sandoval said.
The 96,000 square-foot, $7 million multi-purpose facility officially opened for events in February 2009.
Global Spectrum, Jolley’s employer, took over management of the facility from the county in May and the fairgrounds in September 2009, with promises to reduce expenses and increase profits.
Jolley also reported Tuesday the facility and fairgrounds are operating around $10,000 under budget.
The facility was projected operate in a $340,000 deficit this year, but Jolley has said previously, he believes he may be able to close out the year under $300,000.