Story by Ruth Nicolaus The Mid States East Rodeo Association member lived in Texas for five years before moving back to her parents’ farm in […]
Association MemberJoin Rodeo News
Meet the Member Kyle Peterman
story by Rayne Sherman
When the dust settled at the Mid States Finals Rodeo, held October 2-3 in Swanton, Ohio, Kyle Peterman was crowned the 2015 Bull Riding Champion. “I didn’t go to a lot of Mid States rodeos so I was fortunate I did well. Winning the championship was an unspoken goal this year,” said Kyle.
23-year-old Kyle grew up in Plumwood, Ohio, on a small farm with cattle and horses. His dad, Scott Peterman, bought, sold, and trained horses and Kyle showed dairy beef feeders in 4H. Kyle became interested in bull riding because his older cousin, Joe Leech, rode bulls. Joe would let Kyle and another cousin, Casey Peterman, go to his house to ride the bucking barrel. Kyle didn’t start riding bulls until he was 16 when he joined the Ohio Junior Rodeo Association. He was a member of that association for one year before joining the Ohio High School Rodeo Association (OHSRA) as a junior in high school. He qualified for the National High School Rodeo Finals both years he was a member of the OHSRA. During his senior year, a few of his fellow OHSRA members’ dads encouraged him to try steer wrestling so he borrowed a horse and entered the event. He had thrown steers from the ground, but hadn’t jumped one from a horse before he entered the first time. Kyle competed as a steer wrestler and bull rider for two years in the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association as a student at Fort Scott Community College where he earned an associate’s degree in Fine Arts. “Being at Fort Scott was a whole different lifestyle, it was a cowboy lifestyle. The whole reason I enjoy rodeo is that it has taught me to be humble and I’ve gotten closer to God. At Fort Scott we had cowboy church every week and it was a place to learn manners and take in the blessings God has done for you,” said Kyle. Of his two events, Kyle enjoys bull riding the most and it is his main focus for now. He also knows how to rope and may begin competing as a roper and steer wrestler later in his rodeo career. “When I first started riding bulls I saw everyone praying and thought that the fellowship that came with it was the coolest thing I’d seen. I had a friend who would come with us to rodeos who was a Christian and we had bible studies on the way to bull ridings. The longer I’ve been involved, the closer it has brought me to God,” said Kyle. In addition to being a member of the Mid States Rodeo Association, Kyle is a member of the International Professional Rodeo Association and the Southern Extreme Bull Riding Association. His goal for this year was to qualify for the finals in all three associations.
Outside of rodeo, Kyle works for K Bar C Bucking Bulls, owned by Kenny and Cristy McElroy, as a ranch hand. He would like to thank K Bar C Bucking Bulls for their sponsorship this year. Kyle also works for a farmer helping plant and harvest crops. Kyle’s mom is Shelli Ryder and he has an older brother, Lance. Even though his family isn’t involved in rodeo, they have been very supportive. Kyle and his girlfriend, Jennifer Jarvis, first met several years ago at Rod’s Western Store where she worked. Jennifer noticed Kyle’s OHSRA jacket and asked him about it because she had also been a member of the association, though she was a couple years ahead of Kyle. When Kyle moved home from college he visited Rod’s again and discovered Jennifer still worked there. They began talking about his bull riding and she attended an event with him later that night. The couple has been dating for a year and a half.
Kyle’s goal is to be the best he can be, have fun, live life and take bull riding as far as he can. He hopes to have a family someday and pass the cowboy lifestyle on to his kids. Right now, he is focused on accomplishing the goals he set for himself this year and hasn’t decided what direction he’ll take next year.
“I’m most proud of the way rodeo has taken me through life. It has gotten me a college education and brought me closer to God. It’s setting me up for a good life. It’s about being a role model for younger people and showing them bull riding isn’t just about having fun,” stated Kyle, “I’ve been fortunate not to have many injuries and God has opened some awesome doors for me. I try to be the best I can for Him and show others what He can do for you. I am a kid who grew up on a small farm in a small town, but if you put your heart into something, you can go as far as you want.”