Steamboat Springs The 21st annual Yampa River Festival will be preceded by a pro-caliber open class whitewater rodeo known as the Fat City Showdown on June 5.
The rodeo, sponsored by Fat Eddy's Threadworks and Paddler Magazine, will be held at the Z-Hole on the Yampa River across from the Double Z Bar and Barbeque.
Between 40 and 60 participants are expected to be in the kayaking event, including a number of individuals in the pro circuit. About 10 to 15 locals will be in the event, said John Cardillo of Fat Eddy's.
There is a $3,000 purse to be divided among the winners. Starting time will be determined after a preregistration barbecue at Paddler Magazine June 4.
Cardillo said there will be nighttime finals running until about 10 p.m.
The Fat City Showdown was originally scheduled to take place the same weekend as the festival, but that conflicted with a pro rodeo in Durango, Cardillo said.
Peter Van De Carr, Yampa River Festival organizer, said another river rodeo for locals will take place the weekend of the Yampa River Festival.
The Yampa River Festival runs June 8-10.
At the Fat City Showdown on June 5, bleachers will be set up and food vendors will be on hand, Cardillo said.
Fat Eddy's and Paddler Magazine will donate all proceeds from the Fat City Showdown, including a portion of the vendor sales, to the Down River Project a city project that will add play boating features to the river near the 13th Street bridge.
Fat Eddy's encourages individuals to attend the Fat City Showdown and purchase food, which will help raise money for the Down River Project.
Fat Eddy's and Paddler Magazine also will be helping raise funds for the project by obtaining a substantial amount of products (including a kayak, paddles and helmets) for the silent auction of the Yampa River Festival.
For more information or to volunteer for the Fat City Showdown, contact Cardillo at 870-0596.