And they call the thing rodeo...

Those feening for some bull-riding-dirt-flying-all-for-a-good-cause-fun, wait no more.

Summer is officially here and it’s time to boot scootin’ boogie on down to the Kitsap County Fairgrounds for some Thunderbird Pro Rodeo entertainment. Now in its fifth year, the anticipated event kicks off today at 6 p.m., and we can’t think of a better place to spend the weekend. Thunderbird is a fine preamble to the rodeo action that is the Kitsap County Fair’s Stampede. With two more months to go, however, it’s due time to get that rodeo fix.

In recalling the reasons why the Thunderbird Pro Rodeo is so great, we thought it only natural to give you our top five reasons to head over to the Fairgrounds this weekend:

5. Grabbing the bull by the horns. The sheer excitement and adrenaline rush of watching a cowboy hang on for dear life through what seems like the longest eight seconds ever is a ride in itself — even if only from the grandstands.

4. It’s all about community. Thunderbird is put on each year entirely through volunteer efforts. These men and women aren’t planning, setting up and taking down stands for a paycheck; they’re out there because they want to give back to their community.

3. It’s one of a kind in the Northwest. There’s only one benefit rodeo in the entire Northwest Professional Rodeo Association and that’s Thunderbird.

2. Economy’s got nothing on rodeo. Despite a struggling economy, local businesses still managed to dig deep and provide sponsorship funds to keep the event going.

1. It’s all for charity. Money raised goes straight to Corey’s Day on the Farm — an event each May designed to give special needs children the chance to experience farm life — and the Northwest Burn Foundation. There’s nothing like the feeling of helping others.

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