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Rodeo Dress



Rodeo Dress Code

Why rodeo participants, officials and committee members associated with a professional rodeo wear certain attire.

Rodeos are one of the fastest growing extreme sports events in the United States. Rodeo is one of only two professional sports that emerged from occupations. Rodeo emerged from cowboys claiming bragging rights and as a form of diversion and entertainment from the daily toil of driving cattle. NASCAR also has a similar evolution but evolved from moonshine running.

Professional rodeo has strict dress codes for participants and officials. They also have fines and penalties for not following. These rules are established to maintain the history, culture and integrity of the event as it has evolved into a professional sport. The rules are based on the original cowboy attire which had one purpose for the cowboy which was to protect him from the elements and hazards of his profession. The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA), The Women?s? Professional Rodeo Association (WPRA) and the Miss Rodeo USA pageant all have sections in their rules dedicated to dress codes.

Professional Cowboy Association ? 2014 Rulebook page 17 section 15. ?Full western attire is defined as: long sleeve shirt, jeans, cowboy boots and cowboy hat.? Note that there is an automatic field fine of $25 for being found on the rodeo grounds without full western attire. The rodeo secretary is responsible for noting and filing a report.

Women?s Professional Rodeo Association - Official Rule Book page 77 section 12.2.1: ?Contestants appearance must be neat, clean and professional. Any contestant whose appearance is deemed unprofessional will be fined. The fine will be $100.00. Contestants must wear long sleeve shirts that are collared and have either buttons, snaps or full length zipper on the front of the shirt. Jeans without holes, western boots and western hat?

Official Miss Rodeo America Pageant Rules and Regulations page 13. (Sanctioned By Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association). ?All outfits should include western hat, boots, belt and state banner unless otherwise specified.

All dresses must have sleeves and sleeves should be longer than a cap sleeve. If dress or top does not have sleeves then a jacket with sleeves must be worn. The skirt length should not be more than 3" above the knee. No halter or prom type dresses. No midriff showing. Nothing extremely low cut either in the front or the back. The style you project with your outfit should reflect a western image. ?

Note that swimsuits, mini-skirts and shorts are not in keeping with promoting the image of professional rodeo and are not appropriate. Depending on the venue jeans without holes and western style Wrangler pant outfits are appropriate.

?Skirts and dresses are always appropriate at fashion shows, luncheons and TV appearances; unless it takes place at a rodeo then jeans would be acceptable. If attending a more business style luncheon you would want to wear a jacket/blazer over your top or dress. If you cannot decide what you should wear to an event, remember it?s always better to over dress, professionalism is key. Miss Rodeo America is the face of rodeo, along with all Rodeo Queens across the country. Some people?s only experience with the industry will be time spent with a rodeo queen; this is why it?s so important to keep a professional image.? -MRA Fashion Forward Dress & Skirt Fashion Tips Posted on January 21, 2015 by Miss Rodeo America

Cowboy Hat Etiquette

Hats are removed to eat, enter a home or private office, and to address the flag during the National Anthem. When being introduced to a lady, remove or tip your hat?but never to a man. (That?s an insult.) Keep your hat on at the bar, in public buildings, and at the theater, unless it?s blocking someone?s view. Many rodeo cowboys believe it?s bad luck to lay their hat on a bed.

Cowboy Hat Etiquette - Take It Off or Tip It?

Cowboy hat etiquette, when you are wearing your hat, can make an old school impression on a new world. Let's face it...times have changed. But, what happens when someone decides to tip their hat to you out of respect and kindness?

Cowboy Hat Manners

There are certain rules about tipping your hat, or taking off your cowboy hat. The etiquette associated with cowboy hats really depends on where you are and what you are doing. Here are the rules to make it easy. Indoors

If you are indoors, proper cowboy hat etiquette says that you should take your hat off except in public places like a town hall or post office. This is acceptable to strangers and they will not find it offensive.

However, if you were wearing one that was large and difficult to see around, you might take it off just to be polite to others about their vision. Always take it off in movie theaters, public sporting events, and other events where seeing around the hat would be an issue. People will appreciate the fact that you took it off and they did not have to ask you to do it.


When you are outdoors, the real question is do you tip your hat to acknowledge something, or do you take it off? Believe it or not, it has nothing to do with whether you are on a horse or not.

Tipping A Hat

Tipping your hat is where you would partially remove it and then put it right back on. It is mostly done as a sign of respect and politeness. You would tip your hat if you:

? When you meet or leave a woman that is a stranger. ? When someone has shown you any kind of courtesy. ? When asking something of an elderly person. ? As a general acknowledgment. Think of it as saying "hi" to someone.

Removing A Hat

You would remove your hat if you are dealing with people that you have a relationship with.

If you meet someone you know, or you are saying goodbye to them, it is appropriate to remove your hat as a way of showing respect for them.

When passing someone you know if the street, it would be acceptable cowboy hat etiquette to remove your hat showing that you know them and have a relationship with them.

It is also a good gesture to remove your hat during the Pledge of Allegiance, the national anthem, or during a prayer. This shows that you are acknowledging these important events and shows respect for these symbols.

In today's society, so few people have proper manners or etiquette. What would happen if you were to tip your hat to a stranger that you met for the first time? I assure you it would make quite the impression because that is something that is so far removed from our culture.

Even though our website is all about modern manners, sometimes going a little "retro" will provide a huge impression on people. Tip your hat and see how people react. They will likely never forget you...

Fur/Felt vs. Straw

Originally cowboys had one hat ? typically a fur hat (Made with beaver and rabbit pelt fur.). This hat was worn everyday all year. They had a wide brim to protect the cowboy from the elements. Stetson and Resistol were two hat brands that tamed the west you might say and are worthy of reading their histories. As the name Resistol indicates a claim to fame was it could resist all. These two brands are now owened by Hatco who also produce the Charlie 1 Horse hats.

Interesting note, sweat bleeding through the crown was an issue Resistol claimed to stop. There was a moister barrier put between the sweat band and the hat. This ended up trapping the moister and causing rot.

The quality of a fur hat was denoted by the number of ?X?s in the label. The more the more felt. Marketers decided that it might be good for sales to simply increase the number of ?X?s. Manufacturers will not give out the percentage they use to save guard their formulas. So how do you tell the better quality?? Feel. The lighter and softer the hat is to the feel the better quality. The price points for most of the top brands will typically have comparable quality. A higher quality hat will be more comfortable to wear and hold up longer. Pure felt hats will have no fur content and be very stiff even hard and are heavier.

When do you wear a straw hat?

Common etiquette has come to say South of the Mason Dixon Line you can wear a straw from Easter to Labor Day. North of the Masson Dixon Line you can wear a straw from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

For formal occasions a fur hat is most appropriate.

Luck and your hat:

Wearing your hat backwards is considered bad luck. There could be more to the thought process of the wearer and not just luck. Note there is a ribbon in the sweat band of a hat that indicates the back.

Never put a hat down on its brim. A cowboy hat should be put upside down. This may not be so much about luck but more about protecting the shape of your brim.

Never touch another man?s hat. Well, just don?t ask and even more important don?t touch another man?s hat.


Boots: Square toe vs pointed.


The original boots worn by cowboys were square. They be came more rounded to better fit through stirups. Pointed boots are more recent and became a fasion statement - how narrow can you go. Wider and square boots have made a come back. Comfort has become fasionable again. Many boot makers are adding options for the soles that are more durable and comfortable than leather. These soles also resist water and the elements that a cowboy or cowgirls foot are likely to come in contact with.

Picket Team Dressed for Rodeo