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Days of ’47 Rodeo puts down roots

Courtesy of the Days of '47 Rodeo

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH --  One of the West’s great traditions, the Komatsu Equipment Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo presented by Zions Bank, has a new home in Salt Lake City – The Days of ’47 Arena at State Fair Park. It’s a $16-million outdoor arena custom created for the rodeo experience – where rodeo reigns and the fan experience is second to none. With the help of well-known national partners like Komatsu Equipment, Zions Bank, Wrangler, Justin Boots, Utah Sports Commission and Vivint, nothing will be spared for this inaugural western lifestyle experience. 

Scheduled to open July 2017, the Days of ’47 Arena will be the permanent home of the 150-year-old rodeo. Previously, the Days of ’47 Rodeo has been held at five different venues, with the most recent at Vivint Smart Home Arena. When Vivint Arena announced plans to undergo a complete remodel in the summer of 2017, it prompted the rodeo to begin the search for a new home.

At the same time, the Utah Legislature was struggling with deteriorating fair grounds, which led the Days of ’47 Executive Committee Chairman Kem Gardner to suggest the creation of a large, multi-purpose arena on the State Fair Grounds that could be used by the rodeo in July and the Utah State Fair throughout the rest of the year. When the idea was brought before the Utah Legislature in a special session, it passed unanimously, thanks to considerable collaboration and multiple funding sources, including the State of Utah ($10M), Salt Lake City & Salt Lake County ($3M) and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ($3M).

“Historically, the rodeo has played a huge part in Utah’s Days of ’47 celebration, which commemorates the entry of the pioneers into the Salt Lake valley on July 24, 1847,” Gardner said. “Now, Utah will be able to continue its rich rodeo tradition in its permanent home, while revitalizing the Utah State Fair Park grounds as well. It’s truly a win-win.”

Fans will be able to choose from one of 10,000 reserved, premium seats, all with clear views of the action. Enhancing the experience will be a state-of-the-art sound system and two HD jumbo video screens, showing the best of the world-class rodeo action. With slow motion replays and behind-the-scenes video, the fans will never miss a moment. Animal athletes will also benefit from the industry’s best chutes, holding pens and livestock equipment, creating the best possible experience for the animals.

With a $1 million purse on the line, rodeo athletes know the important role the arena soil plays in their sport. Thanks to a grant from the WPRA, a full analysis of the native soils was made so the soil and sand mixture could provide the optimum footing for each equine event. Whether they need to buck, cut or slide, the animals and athletes will find the surface at the Days of ’47 Arena is one of the best in the country that will give them the competitive edge.

The arena will be dedicated Wednesday, July 19 at 7:00 p.m., and will feature a performance from the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir. In attendance will be VIPs and dignitaries from around the state. The arena opening, along with the introduction of the new Gold Medal Cowboy Games format this year, makes for a world-class rodeo experience you’re not going to want to miss. 

Tickets start at just $14. Plan your visit for this historic occasion today by visiting


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