City, county hoping to make Clovis a rodeo destination

The Southern New Mexico State Fair Rodeo will be held this year from September 8-18.

Making Clovis a destination spot for national scale rodeo action got the attention of Clovis city and Curry County commissioners and administrators at the annual city/county luncheon on Monday.

The topic came up as Curry County Events Center General Manager K.C. Messick spoke to the group about plans to tear down the existing animal barns at the fairgrounds and build a $10 million livestock pavilion.

“This would be a game changer,” Messick said.

It is believed a new, modern pavilion will bring in more major equestrian events and a broad range of “money making events.”

Messick spoke of losing business to other cities because the Curry County facility doesn’t meet expected standards.

Dusty Leatherwood, who won the Republican Curry County Commission District 3 race in the June 7 primary, spoke of Curry County losing event business to Levelland, Texas.

Leatherwood advocated for the city of Clovis and Curry County to “get together” and get behind the rodeo so more money would come into the area.

Leatherwood pointed out that Clovis is the only place for rodeo people to stop between Phoenix and Oklahoma City or between Denver and Fort Worth.

“They don’t want to stop in Albuquerque,” Leatherwood said. “They’ll lose half their stuff,” a reference to that city’s high crime rate.

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