story by Siri Stevens The North Park Never Summer Rodeo has been a mainstay in Walden, Colorado, for more than 75 years. “It’s a weeklong […]
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Meet the Member Lorie Diodosio
story by Darlene Craven
An old boyfriend once accused Lorie Diodosio of liking her horses more than him and he was right. Lorie’s passion for horses was bred into her at an early age, spending weekends and summers on the family farm in Fowler, Colorado. As a kid, Lorie competed in 4-H and Little Britches rodeos and participated in Southern Colorado Rodeo Association events in high school. Living in a home she and her husband, Mike, built on the farm, Lorie’s days are mostly about horses and she is grateful for that.
Married 28 years to Mike, a former farrier and now pastor at Fowler Christian Church, they raised twenty-year old Lena nicknamed “Dolly” who also barrel races in college. While Lorie buys, sells and trains horses, Mike is happy minding the irrigated 110 acres that sustains a small-bale operation that produces such great hay that it is always in demand. On any given day, Lorie works her five horses, including 9-year old 8 Ball and El Rey who is eight. “El Rey is hit and miss but super fast,” Lorie explains, “But he doesn’t really care if knocks over a barrel.” 8 Ball, on the other hand, is very consistent and “has so much try.” Lorie was excited to get 8 Ball as a four-year old because she rode his brother who had won a lot of money. Lorie gets a lot of offers to buy 8 Ball but she won’t sell because he’s such a great horse. Those checks translate into many wins, including the CPRA barrel racing and all-around cowgirl titles in 2016. 2019 was a good year, too, because Lorie placed first in the CPRA finals, winning the second go round, posting a 14.8 time in Round 3, and winning the average. “8 Ball really liked the arena at Montrose (where the CPRA finals were held in 2019.)” Placing every weekend in summer 2018 made rodeoing pretty fun that year and earned her some nice checks as well.
Lorie works as a part-time nurse and wellness coordinator for the Fowler school district. Her schedule allows her to travel to as many as fifty Colorado Professional Rodeo Association (CPRA) and Women’s Professional Rodeo Association (WPRA) rodeos a season. CPRA rodeos make sense for Lorie’s schedule and she can travel easily to rodeo in Durango, Alamosa, Norwood or Steamboat. In fact, Lorie likes the CPRA so much she has stepped up to be the 2020 barrel racing director. Family oriented, close-knit and friendly competition are why Lorie enjoys being with the girls in the rodeo.
Speaking of family, Lorie doesn’t road trip alone – her 85-year old mother, Nancy Schiffer, frequently travels with her, because she loves to watch rodeo and always makes new friends while sitting in the stands. Lorie refers to their rodeo adventures as “glamping,” traveling in an RV outfitted with all the comforts of home. They live pretty well on the road and Lorie is grateful because “it wasn’t always this easy.”
Lorie just loves riding colts and young horses. “Seeing them come on is exciting because you don’t know how the horse is going to be until they get into training.” Over the past ten years, barrel racing bloodlines have really come along. “You can still find good horses at good prices,” Lorie advises, but that is changing. “It gets out of hand when the dam has a won a lot, or produced a lot of winners. Then it can get expensive.” Lorie has worked with enough horses to gauge whether the horse is going to fit her style and personality. She keeps the horses that are pleasers and show an essential willingness. Selling good horses still makes her sad though, even though she knows they are going to good places.
Lorie Diodosio is in a good place and she knows it. “God has blessed me with horses and a family and the ability to do what I love. Running barrels is my passion, but I hope that I am not known as a barrel racer, but rather a person who serves Christ.” Service and passion are a solid foundation that will take Lorie down her rodeo path as far as she wants to go.