HOW IT BEGAN
The Silver Spurs Rodeo is the largest rodeo east of the Mississippi and is annually ranked among the top 50 events sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). The Silver Spurs Rodeo runs deep in the heart of Osceola County, Florida, where the history stems from a humble gathering of Osceola County ranchers in the early 1940s. In 1941, those pioneering ranchers gathered in Tallahassee to ride in the inaugural parade for newly elected Florida Governor Spessard Holland. Their appearance gained statewide attention and sparked the notion that they should continue to gather and enjoy their common interest of horseback riding.
THE SILVER SPURS RIDING CLUB IS FORMED
After their performance, they decided to officially form the Silver Spurs Riding Club. The club was very active and quickly grew in popularity across the state. By the end of their first year, they had hosted a small informal rodeo and performed a square dance on horseback known as Quadrille in Moultrie, Georgia. They participated in the state Kiwanis Convention in Orlando and also performed in the Orange Bowl Parade in Miami. In 1942 they performed for the benefit of Crippled Children, the American Red Cross and the Army-Navy Relief Show. In 1943, the club members built their first rodeo arena on land donated by Henry O. Partin. That land was located on the corner of today’s Neptune Road and Kings Highway in Kissimmee.
THE FIRST FULL DRESS RODEO
In March of 1944, the group staged a show as their contribution to the Fourth War Loan. The admission to the rodeo was the purchase of a war bond. This was the first rodeo held in the Partin pasture and drew about 1,000 people. That initial success led to the first full-dress rodeo on July 4, 1944. Then in 1949, the club acquired 15 acres on Highway 192 and started work on the Silver Spurs Rodeo Arena. The first rodeo in this new location was held July 4, 1950, and in February of 1951, the club held its first mid-winter rodeo. From that point to today, the Silver Spurs Rodeo has been thrilling the residents of Central Florida and tens of thousands of visitors each year.
THE DAWN OF A NEW ARENA
In 1999, the Silver Spurs Riding Club approved the demolition of the old arena and the development of a brand new state-of-the-art indoor facility. In March of 2002, demolition began on the historic arena and construction started on the new multi-purpose Silver Spurs Arena. Reopened in October 2003, the new Silver Spurs Arena boasts 8,300 seats and 12 luxury skyboxes in an indoor climate-controlled environment designed to host rodeos, sporting events, concerts, and more.