Story by Ruth Nicolaus Because of his parents, Scott and Jenee Holub, and his granddad, George Rachau, Dillin Holub is involved in the sport he […]
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Meet the Member Rolling Stone Rodeo Co.
story by Lily Weinacht
The owner of Rolling Stone Rodeo Company based in Germantown, Ohio, Travis Kershner is one of rodeo’s biggest fans, a passion he says is crucial to being a rodeo producer. Working with fair boards and APRA and SEBRA rodeo committees, Rolling Stone Rodeo Company constantly strives to produce the best Rock’n Wild West Shows possible.
“Being a rodeo athlete brought me to this path,” says Travis, who competed in roughstock from his teens to his early twenties. “I never really had a natural ability for it, but after high school I wanted to rodeo so bad that I started traveling all over. But I couldn’t pay fees to get to the next rodeo, so I started working for stock contractors and rodeo producers. I learned from those guys, and I loved rodeo so much, that’s how I got into this position.”
In 2010, Travis produced his first rodeo and did everything himself at the start from necessity, but also to educate himself about the intricacies of his new business. “I ran everything from ground crew to ticketing and sales, and I talked to fair boards and rodeo committees to understand where they were coming from. I’ve progressively built up from there ever since.” Rolling Stone Rodeo, which runs on family power, specializes in four-event format rodeos, featuring all three roughstock events and barrel racing. “It’s been hard to find an association that would jump on board with that format, but fortunately for us, the APRA felt the same way and wanted to open that up to more contractors, so this is their first year to sanction a four-event rodeo. Every year we do a tour that has a year-end finals, and 2019 is the Off Road Tour. There are 10 rodeos and every one will have something a little different with hospitality tents and offering up different awards and prizes for contestants.” Specialty acts including trick riding, cowboy mounted shooting, and motocross jumping also keep the rodeos running with fresh entertainment.
Always working towards goals one or two years ahead, Travis is booking for 2020 rodeos and plans to be in a more rodeo friendly weather climate by 2025. He leases bulls for his rodeos, but he’s especially fascinated with bucking horses. “J Bar J Rodeo in Michigan had a horse called Nightmare that started the Night Jacket bloodline. I really want to get a bucking horse breeding program going and get back to that Night Jacket bloodline up here in the Northeast. Night Jacket is one of the greatest bucking horse studs in the United States with a really cool story, and I want to be part of it someday.” One of Travis’s favorite broncs, Jumping Jack Flash, whom they purchased from Todd Anderson, is a family favorite. “We can walk out to him in the pasture, and the kids pet on him. Being Rolling Stone Rodeo Company, I’m a big fan of all types of music, and we try to make music just as involved in the rodeos as anything else. We name the bucking horses after songs that we play while they’re bucking. It’s an idea we got from Mack Altizer of Bad Company Rodeo,” says Travis, who is all for sharing creativity and ideas between his peers. “Producers want to compete against each other so much, whereas I think we need to come together and think about what we can do to promote this business so we can pass it down to our young ones.” His passion for helping the next generation of rodeo athletes, particularly roughstock riders, also inspired Travis to produce free bareback and saddle bronc riding clinics, and other rodeo schools over the years.
“Stock contractors should help one another, and I think we need to work together in this industry and not just ourselves,” he concludes. “I wouldn’t be in the position that I am today if it wasn’t for God and the many blessings He has given me, and the wonderful people He has placed in my life.”