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  • Paul Cooley


Gerry – One of the rising stars of rodeo comedy has been signed to entertain the fans as well as to serve as the barrel man during the bull riding event at the Gerry Volunteer Fire Department’s 72nd annual PRCA sanctioned rodeo for four nights, August 3-6.

Matt Tarr, a native of Cody Wyoming, is performing every week at rodeos across the country and will be making his first trip to Gerry. He grew up around animals since his father is a veterinarian and they lived on a ranch. His interest in rodeo began at an early age with developing his roping skills which he still uses in his acts today. Later he and a friend began fighting bulls in rodeos, something which he says is very dangerous and often results in serious injuries. Due to the dangers, he decided to give that up when he met and married his wife Stacie.

However, that decision proved to be a blessing in disguise when he was at a rodeo and the clown who had been hired to perform failed to show up. Matt says he told the rodeo officials, “I can do that”, and he went into the arena for his first appearance as a rodeo clown. The rest is history as he and Stacie and their four-year-old son Bransen are traveling together full time as Matt entertains the rodeo fans.

Matt has several acts as a part of his routine including a mini Australian shepherd dog, but he says he is just out to have fun. “I am a fun person”, and I try to transfer that to the fans. I am the same person outside the arena as I am inside. This is what I love; it is not an act.” He includes kids from the audience in his performances and keeps his humor family friendly. He has a unique perspective on his profession as he says he believes that God’s calling for his life is to be a rodeo clown.

This rodeo is now the longest consecutively running rodeo east of the Mississippi with all proceeds benefitting the fire department. More than 200 professional cowboys and cowgirls are expected to compete for $45,000 in prize money in the seven traditional rodeo events during the four nights of competition, Wednesday through Saturday, August 3-6 at 8:00 in their arena five miles north of Jamestown, New York, on Route 60. The stock contractor is Painted Pony Championship Rodeo from Lake Lucerne, New York.

In addition, the event features the famous beef barbeque dinners served each day, beginning at 5:00, and a lighted midway with more than 20 vendors offering everything from Western wear to fried dough and cotton candy.  Additional information is available at the rodeo website or by phone at 716 985-4847 or toll free at 1-888-985-4847.

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