Mild temperatures greeted visitors, spectators, vendors, riders and horses to the Minnesota State Championship hosted by the Wild Rice Peacemakers who were joined by other Cowboy Mounted Shooters around the region at the Town and Country Saddle Club near Fergus Falls, MN on Friday, August 13 and Saturday, August 14. The beautiful and breezy day was welcomed after a couple weeks of high temperatures and humidity.
According to the Wild Rice Peacemakers Facebook page, the match directors were: Katie Nolte, Heather Westby, Chance Nolte, Sam Westby and Lisa Doll Severson.
– By Katie Nolte –
The 2021 Minnesota Cowboy Mounted Shooting State Championship hosted by the Wild Rice Peacemakers took place August 14-15. Cowboys and cowgirls from Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa and Wisconsin all traveled to Fergus Falls, MN to try their hand at winning the title of the 2021 Minnesota State Champion. We had 74 shooters as well as 18 wranglers who participated throughout the weekend. Wranglers are kids ages 11 and under who complete the same patterns as their older competitors, however they do not fire weapons.
Our shooters carry two, .45 revolvers, each loaded with 5 rounds of blanks which are just filled with gun powder then primed. There are 10 balloon targets in the arena in specifically set patterns that the shooters must engage correctly. For each missed balloon or incorrect run of the pattern, there is a time penalty assessed.
Cowboys and cowgirls compete against each other to try and win their level, as well as overall cowboy and cowgirl. We also have a shotgun class as well as rifle. For the shotgun class, the shooter carries one pistol, engaging 5 targets first with their pistol, then holster their pistol and pull their shotgun from their scabbard. They then engage two clusters of balloons with their .410 shotgun. The rifle class is run similar to shotgun class, however they use a level action rifle to engage 5 separate targets, having to level their rifle in between each target. Awards, prizes and money was handed out to winners of each level, shotgun and rifle champions as well as those who shot clean all weekend (never missed a target).
Cowboy mounted shooting is the fastest growing equestrian sport at this time.