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2017-07-06

Rodeo clown discusses career

By Raymond V. Carter, Jr. BCHC Research Historian ©2017

On May 28, 2017, I interviewed John Harrison of Soper, Oklahoma, which is a little town in the southeastern part of the state. John is a rodeo clown, barrel man, and specialty act that travels all across the United States doing bronc rodeos about nine months out of the year. John was in Bandera at the rodeo at Mansfield Park and during the rodeo he performed the "Miss Rodeo Universe Act," which is a satire on rodeo queens. John said, "Rodeo queens are great ambassadors to our sport, but just like in every profession there are one or two people that give you a bad name and there was a couple of rodeo queens that helped contribute to the idea of this act."
John stated, "I've been in this act for about 15 years and we started off kind of poking around at the queens and we got the car involved, then started jumping the car."
The act is, John dresses up in an over-dramatized costume as a rodeo queen who drives a car out into the arena and kinda flirts with the rodeo announcer. At the end of the performance, the rodeo queen gets on a horse and while exiting the arena jumps the car. John continued, 'That is how it evolved and it actually won comedy act of the year last year in the PCRA.
"I grew in the sport of rodeo, my grandfather was a world champion bull rider, Freckles Brown, in the 60s. In 1962 he won the world (championship) and in 1967 he rode ''Tornado'' at the National Finals in Oklahoma City.