Meet the Member Joe Stoddard
story by Lillian Landreth Many a high school rodeo athlete has been shaped by Joe Stoddard’s contributions to the sport, from his blood relations to […]
story by Lily Weinacht
“I love all the ties you get through rodeo, the friends you make, and the experiences,” says 18 year old Reed Arneson. “I enjoy the camaraderie of it – rodeo’s something I love to do!” The cowboy from Meadow, S.D., has been competing in the SDHSRA since he was a freshman, competing on both ends of the arena in saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, and team roping as a heeler. Reed started out with playdays and 4-H rodeos before he moved on to high school rodeo. He lowered himself into the chutes for the first time as a sophomore after attending a bronc riding school in Faith, S.D. It quickly became his favorite event. “After about a year, it started clicking for me,” he says. “I went to several more bronc riding schools, and that really helped. I also have a spur board and we have some practice horses that we buck sometimes.”
Since Reed jumped boots first into rodeo, his family has done the same, taking him to his high school rodeos. His 11-year-old brother, Ian, is riding steers in 4-H rodeo, with dreams of becoming a saddle bronc rider. “I really look up to my dad,” says Reed. “He’s really hard working, and that motivates me to push myself.” In addition to high school and winter series rodeos, Reed recently started competing in saddle bronc riding in the SDRA. His main goal for the year, however, is to return once more to the NHSFR, which he competed in for the first time in 2015, qualifying in saddle bronc riding and team roping with his partner, Collin Palmer. Although Reed missed both his horses and the second round of team roping was a no time, going to Rock Springs, Wyo., was the highlight of his summer. “It was an amazing experience!” he describes. “There were so many people to meet, and driving around in those golf carts was pretty entertaining. We also had karaoke for the South Dakota team and a dance – it was a blast!”
The Arneson family makes their home outside of Meadow, and about 25 minutes from the larger town, Bison. “I like living out here,” says Reed. “I enjoy open range, and it’s good cow country.” Reed’s dad and step-mom, Eric and Mindy Arneson, raise Black Angus cows. Much of Reed’s time is spent working with his family on the ranch. “Fixing fence is my least favorite,” he admits. “It get’s kind of old, but I do like to work and stay busy.” When there’s a break in the work, Reed takes his roping horse, Wilbur, to his neighbor’s arena, where he and his friends meet for roping. “We got Wilbur from some people in Newell, and he’s a very solid horse. I get along with him really well.”
A senior at Bison High School, Reed’s two favorite classes this year are Ag. and government. “I’m reading about companion animals for Ag., and I’ve been learning about the presidency and the executive branch. It’s a hard class, but I like to challenge myself,” says Reed. He also played football for his school this fall, and he has played basketball in the past.
Following high school, Reed plans to college rodeo. “I’m looking at schools in North and South Dakota – I’m thinking I’ll just bronc ride and team rope in college,” he says. “Right now I’m focusing on going to as many rodeos as I can and making it back to Nationals. We’ll see where the road takes me, but rodeoing in the PRCA is my big dream.”
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