Oklahoma Recreation and Parks Society recently had their first annual Parks Maintenance Rodeo, in conjunction with their annual conference, and Ardmore’s Parks and Rec team were named co-champions of the competition.
The team tied with Sand Springs Parks and Recreation Department, but said there will only be one winner next year.
“It won’t be no co-champs. It will be THE champs,” said Lee Gothard, with Ardmore Parks and Rec.
Co-worker Marty Webb added, “we’re gonna take Number One next year.”
The employees were able to test their skills in categories like nail driving, plant and weed identification, a back-ho competition, truck and trailer obstacle course, zero turn obstacle course, irrigation assembly and a leaf blower competition.
“My favorite part was, I went with four co-workers and we went and worked as a team and we won as a team,” Gothard said.
Co-worker Che Russell said it was also nice, “hanging out with the bosses.”
The team also won the bowling championship, with assistant director Travis Buell, as well. The maintenance rodeo team consisted of Gothard, Webb, Russell and Clifford Ramon.
Ten teams from across the state participated in the first annual rodeo in Oklahoma City and Parks and Recs Director Teresa Ervin said they plan to continue the tradition at the next ORPS conference, which will be hosted at Ardmore in Regional Park.
“The good thing is they got to network with other guys that do the same job they do day in and day out,” Ervin said. “We get to bring back a little something from them and we take back a little something from us.”
As the team posed for a photo with their winning bowling pin trophy, Ervin cheered the guys on, saying she was proud of them.
“(The rodeo) was geared for these guys to have fun and we never like to lose, so we wanted to bring home the gold,” she said.