Bravo | July 11, 2019

By RICK BROWN Hub Staff Writer KEARNEY — Joan Wells performs trick roping, something she compares to an art, similar to juggling. “It takes a lot of practice to develop the tricks,” she said from her home in Lincoln. “Some take weeks, some take months and some take years to develop. It’s something that you just need to practice — and pick up from other ropers. You’re always learning something new.” Wells should know. She began taking lessons in the early 1960s. In 1979 she won the Will Rogers Trick Roping Contest taking the title of Women’s World Champion Trick Roper. A decade later she was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas. Wells will show off her skills during a presentation called “The History of Trick Roping and the Wild West Show” at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at The Archway as part of the Soda Fountain Sundae series. Admission to the event is free. Following the performance, the audience is invited to stay for root beer floats from The Archway’s vintage soda fountain. Nebraska played an important part of the history of trick roping. Buffalo Bill Cody wanted a trick roper in his Wild West Show. He brought a Mexican cowboy, Vincente Orope- za, to the United States to perform. “Buffalo Bill went to Europe,” said Wells. “They did a trail run in Columbus, Neb., in 1892 and 1893. He opened his first show in Omaha and then went on east.” Cowboys in the United States developed their own style of trick roping. In the past century, interest in the art has waned. “Here in the United States the Will Roger’s style of roping, it’s becoming a lost art,” Wells said. “There are a few ropers down in Texas. My student will probably be the next world champion trick roper. He’s an attorney in Fort Worth.” The ropes are custom made. “It’s an art. Nobody really makes the ropes anymore,” Wells said. “It’s no longer made. I still use an original rope.” In her demonstration, Wells performs about 80 tricks such as butterfly combinations, double tricks, the Big Loop, Ocean Wave Does your child need a physical for the 2019-2020 school year? Beat the summer rush, schedule an appointment today! KINDERGARTEN, 7TH GRADE, & SPORTS PHYSICALS! NEW ADDRESS: 620 East 25th St. • Kearney • 308-865-2767 Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8:00-5:00 Sat. 8:30-Noon • www.kearneyfpa.com EMERSON PLACE is a community for individuals 62 years of age or older, and handicapped/disabled regardless of age. Knudson Management Co., Inc. 600 East 23rd Street Kearney NE 68847 308-237-3221 • TDD 711 knudsoncompany.com EVERYTHING YOU NEED UNDER ONE ROOF: • One-bedroom units • Handicapped accessible units • All utilities paid • Affordable rent • HUD assistance available • Social activities • Maintenance free PETS WELCOME 2620 Second Ave., Kearney • 308-698-7711 • riskearney.com HOME • AUTO • COMMERCIAL • FARM • CROP Make sure we go with you. Call us for a policy review today! PLANNING A ROAD TRIP? RISK & INSURANCE SOLUTIONS 2 DIVERSIONS KEARNEY HUB — THURSDAY, JULY 11, 2019 WHEN AND WHERE What : “History of Trick Roping and the Wild West Show,” a presentation by Joan Wells When : 2:30 p.m. Sunday Where : The Archway at 3060 E. First St., I-80 exit 272 Admission : Free Contact :308-237-1000; www.archway.org . Check out her tricks Joan Wells, courtesy TRICK ROPER Joan Wells will talk about the history of roping and the Wild West shows during a program at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at The Archway. “You’ve got to be physically fit, coordinated and have some strength in your arms and shoulders,” Wells said of the attributes need- ed to excel in the world of trick roping. Admission to the event is free. SHE’S GOT TRICKS Continued on page 8 Wells to present on trick roping 2:30 p.m. Sunday “It’s an art. Nobody really makes the ropes anymore. It’s no longer made. I still use an original rope.” Joan Wells

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