Rop­ers

At Home With | Jake Barnes | Clay O | crafts­man | go-to girl | other gig | Jr. NFR

Spin to Win Rodeo - - Ropers -

(At home with)

Will and Kathie Os­burn carry the team rop­ing torch in the heart of the Em­pire State at their Os­burn Arena in Camp­bell, New York. Their mom-and­pop team rop­ing shop hosts NTRL/USTRC-af­fil­i­ate rop­ings that draw rop­ers from hun­dreds of miles and al­low them to ac­cu­mu­late earn­ings to­ward the USTRC’s Cinch Na­tional Fi­nals of Team Rop­ing, as well as NTRL qual­i­fi­ca­tions. Will’s pas­sion for team rop­ing, paired with Kathie’s su­pe­rior sec­re­tary-ing skills, keeps the sport thriv­ing in their un­likely spot.— Chelsea Shaf­fer

Q: How did you get in­volved with team rop­ing to be­gin with?

A: Kathie: Will has al­ways been a horse­man, and when his nephew, Theron, started team rop­ing in high school rodeo, we bought Will a team rop­ing horse and a rope, and we started from there. That was when Will turned 40—he’s 66 this year.

Will: I’ve lived all my life through my nieces and neph­ews; we don’t have any kids of our own. I have two neph­ews who

high school rodeoed—Theron See­ley and David See­ley. When they got into it, we went to quite a lot of rop­ings over the week­ends—prob­a­bly 50 a year. I told them we could go rope for money ev­ery week­end in­stead of go­ing to the high school rodeos, and they were into it! Then my other nephew, Jon, started a few years later and his son, JT, now ropes with us as well. So, we now have three gen­er­a­tions rop­ing!

Q: And why did you de­cide to start putting on rop­ings?

A: Kathie: It all has to do with Will. I’ve of­ten heard re­marked that it’s a case where one man’s hobby got way out of hand. He started go­ing to lots of rop­ings. Then, he had to have cat­tle to rope at home, then the heifers had calves, then sure enough we had enough cows to have a rop­ing. In the sum­mers, we be­longed to a jack­pot club and hosted six rop­ings. Then, that wasn’t good enough, so we had to have an in­door arena so we could put rop­ings on in the win­ter. It drives our lives now. Ev­ery­thing we do is based on our farm and the cat­tle and hav­ing rop­ings and host­ing rop­ings.

Q: Which end do you rope and why?

A: Will: I mostly head. I started out al­ways just head­ing. We used to have a Fri­day night prac­tice, and it would turn into

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