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PHOTO BY LAUREN WESTER Eliza Turbyfill (left) with her horse Chaos and Tori Welch with her horse Brock both participated in the Cowboy Church of Franklin County’s second annual Barrel Race in 2017.

Cowboy Church welcomes back barrel races

The past few months have been slow for the arena in front of the Cowboy Church of Franklin County, which is used to hosting plenty of events. That is all about to change, as regular events are in full swing and the first barrel race of the year is approaching.

The church hosts barrel races once a month, with the first barrel race of 2020 set for March 14.

“It’s been strange not having as many events recently,” said Jean Martin, advertising director for the Cowboy Church of Franklin County. “It was kind of nice to have a break, but now we are back with things in full swing.”

This year March will boast two barrel races. The second, which will take place March 28, was rescheduled for the end of March from the original date of Feb. 15 – postponed because of excessive rain that caused the arena to be slippery and unsafe for the horses.

The books will open at 2 p.m., and the event will begin at 3 p.m., at the arena in front of the Cowboy Church of Franklin County, located at 25100 Highway 24 in Russellville. The event is free to watch, and concessions will be available.

Age categories begin with riders ages 4-10, the Pee Wee category, with an entry fee of $10.

The youth category will have a $20 entrance fee and feature riders ages 10-18.

The open category will have a $30 entrance fee and run on a 4D barrel racing format. The open category will be for adult riders or youth riders with an extensive amount of experience.

There will also be an exhibition category, with a $5 entrance fee for newer riders or new horses without experience barrel racing.

First place in each category will receive a Bronc Halter.

Martin said it is always enjoyable to watch the barrel races every month, and her favorite part is seeing the excitement from the children. “I love watching the kids with the smiles on their faces,” Martin said.

The Cowboy Church of Franklin County will continue monthly barrel races with additional races April 11 and May 9.

In the case of event changes concerning weather, check the church Facebook page for rescheduled dates and times.