Francis Frontier Days celebrates the Old West | ParkRecord.com

Francis Frontier Days celebrates the Old West

Patrick Parkinson, Of the Record staff

Those hankering this weekend for a glimpse into Summit County’s past can view antique tractors, cheer on bull riders or risk bodily injury in the Ring of Fear at the annual Frontier Days celebration in Francis.

The parade on Saturday will feature several Ford 8N tractors that are more than 50 years old, parade organizer Kristi Major said.

"This is a tribute to the ranching heritage in our area and it’s never been done before," Major said. "The tractor, when it came out, it revolutionized farming and ranching by replacing actual horses."

Antique tractors will be on display in Francis following the parade, which begins Saturday at 4 p.m.

"It’s a larger parade," Major said. "It’s a full mile long this year."

Francis Frontier Days runs all day Saturday and Monday, with vendors, a softball tournament, horse show, barbecue and rodeo.

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"Monday seems to be the day that draws the families because the kids want to come and ride sheep or they want to play in the games and try to catch an animal to take it home," Francis Mayor Lee Snelgrove said. "My kids have grown up with this being a tradition for our family because they can come and they can see a trailer race or they can see a hide race."

"We have a hide race where the horse pulls the hide down to the end of the arena and somebody jumps on the hide and rides back."

The Bull Wars competition Monday afternoon will also feature the popular Ring of Fear.

"I think that draws more people than anything," Snelgrove said.

A handful of contestants will stand in painted circles in the rodeo arena as bulls are unleashed into the ring. Rodeo clowns steer the bulls toward the competitors and the last person who leaves his or her ring wins.

"People come clear from Vernal and there are a lot of people from Salt Lake who come because they like the small-town tradition," Snelgrove said. "There aren’t very many places that you can go watch a trailer race or watch them out there trying to saddle a cow and ride a saddled cow."

Cowboys in the Old West likely competed in similar activities, he explained.

"When the cowboys wanted to have some fun on a weekend or something that’s what they did," Snelgrove said. "I can envision the old guys coming in off the range having ridden a horse all week."

Events such as the breakfast and barbeque cost no more than $7 per person. All events will take place at Francis Town Park located at 2317 South Spring Hollow Road, one mile south of Kamas on State Road 32. For more information call 435-783-6236 or visit http://www.francisutah.org.