Here in Presque Isle, we're gearing up for what could be the biggest event of the year and certainly the wildest ride in the County! That means rodeo clowns and bullfighters. But what's the difference?

Back in the day, a rodeo clown and a bullfighter clown were one in the same.

The rodeo clown's job was to distract the bull when the bull rider was bucked off or jumped off in order to protect him.

While there was a bit of down time, that same bullfighter became rodeo clown entertainer and would provide some comic relief and entertainment to the crowd as a filler inbetween the event, or while waiting for the arena to clear out for one reason or another.

Today, although similar, many rodeo companies hire a rodeo clown entertainer, and usually two bull fighters that are dressed similarly to a clown to fight the bulls.

Michael Smith, Getty Images
Michael Smith, Getty Images

The Job of the Bullfighter (aka Rodeo Protection Athlete) - He's got a big job in helping to distract an average 1500 pound bull from a few hundred pound rider. Their primary job is to distract the bull from the rider. That's another reason why they wear bright colored clothes, handkerchiefs, scarfs, and any other bright-colored article of clothing that might get the bulls attention.

This is such a big deal, and the bullfighter is so near and dear to the bull riders hearts that in some rodeo companies the riders actually vote on who they thought was the best bull fighter of the year.

Dusty Tuckness - This Wyoming bullfighter, from Meeteetse, is probably one of the best bullfighting clowns on the circuit.

He's a 7X - PRCA Bullfighter of the Year, 9X Wrangler National Finals Rodeo Bullfighter, 7X PRCA Mountain States Circuits Finals and the list goes on and on.

Again, he received these awards based on votes from the bull riders themselves.

I've personally seen him in action many times and I can tell you Dusty takes his job seriously and does it very well.

Al Bello, Getty Images
Al Bello, Getty Images

The Job of the Rodeo Clown (aka The Barrel Man) - Although some of the rodeo clowns you see entertaining the crowds in the arena were actual bullfighters, many just enjoy entertaining the crowds.

Many times, you'll see the rodeo clown going back and forth, through his head mic, with the arena announcer. This can be quite comical. But a good barrel man, or rodeo clown, is never too far from his barrel.

Because he never knows when a bull may come after him.

Cody Sosbee, a well known rodeo clown, hails from the state of Arkansas. And does he know how to get a crowd laughing and going. He's also known as 'pumpkin patch', his clown name.

Cody has been nominated over 13 times for Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) Clown of the Year as well as PRCA Comedy Act of the Year.

A rodeo clown does everything from singing, to dancing, to dressing up, working the crowd, charity, and a whole slew of other things.

As you make your way to Boots n' Bulls in Presque Isle on September 15th at the Northern Maine Fair Grounds, you'll now know the difference between the two. You never know, you might want a career in bullfighting......or not.

Dusty Tuckness Shows What A Bullfighters Job Is Here. Brace Yourself!



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