The Tsuu T’ina Indian Rodeo and Pow Wow

If you enjoyed the Calgary Stampede, here’s your chance to see top level rodeo up close at the Tsuu T’ina Nation Indian Rodeo and Pow Wow, held each year in July. This is one of North America’s top Indian rodeos, combined with First Nations culture and the excitement of a traditional pow wow.

This event is held in the scenic Tsuu T’ina Nation, at the Redwood Fairgrounds near Bragg Creek, Alberta (about 30 minutes from Calgary). We had the opportunity to attend both the rodeo and pow wow, and highly recommend it for the whole family.

Rodeo…up close and personal

The Tsuu T’ina’s annual rodeo and pow wow has been held for more than 40 years. Top native cowboys and cowgirls from across Canada and the U.S. compete for cash and prizes in excess of $100,000 in added prize money.

At this rodeo you are so close to the action you can see the determination on the cowboy’s face as he tries to stay on top of a bucking bronco. The announcers are entertaining and a big screen lets you see the action complete with replays. Their are more than 300 competitors in events including: bull riding, calf roping, barrel racing, saddle bronc, and bareback riding.

The Pow Wow – a feast for the senses

The pow wow is both a competition and a celebration of native culture, with hundreds of the best traditional dancers, singers and drummers from across North America participating.

As the pow wow begins, it’s a thrill to hear the steady beat of the drums, the voices singing, bells ringing. And then it’s time for the grand entry of native dancers from across North America in beautiful and elaborate traditional garments.

pow wow ladies

More keep filing in, joining the rest in the centre of the building, until the room is a swirl of colour and dancing.

When you go:

  • There are rodeo events daily, with the top finishers in each category competing in the finals on Sunday
  • Pow wow gets underway at 7pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday
  • Fireworks each evening
  • Plenty of food concessions are on the grounds, with everything from hot dogs and mini donuts, to very tasty Indian tacos
  • There are also booths selling traditional crafts, jewelry and clothing, and more
  • Location: Redwood Meadows Arena, 12 km northeast of Bragg Creek, Alberta on Highway 22

For more information check the event Facebook page.

This post is part of the Travel Photo Monday linkup.

19 replies
    • Shelley
      Shelley says:

      Hi Maya, thanks for your comment. The official website says July 22-26, but I think the first couple days are junior rodeo and minor events so it’s better to attend on the weekend days.

  1. Donna Janke
    Donna Janke says:

    I grew up in a small town in Manitoba with a rodeo every July. Cowboys came to town after the Calgary Stampede. So I have seen a lot of rodeo events. The pow wows and traditional crafts add an interesting feature to the rodeo in Bragg Creek. I like that there are fireworks every night too. Maybe one day I’ll get to see this rodeo.

    • Shelley
      Shelley says:

      If you’re ever in Calgary mid-July it’s a great day trip. The nearby village of Bragg Creek is also a nice place for lunch in beautiful surroundings.

  2. noel
    noel says:

    WOw, gorgeous photos, I love rodeos for all the fun photo opportunities and you really got some great ones. Please share it on our link up today for Travel Photo Mondays.

  3. Betsy Wuebker | PassingThru
    Betsy Wuebker | PassingThru says:

    Two of our favorite things – pow wow and rodeo – in one event?! What a terrific opportunity this is! Our daughter is a barrel racer so I love the intensity in the photo of the female racer and her horse. Pow wow is so full of vibrance; your photos capture it beautifully.

    • Shelley
      Shelley says:

      The pow wow was a photographers dream for sure! That’s so cool your daughter is a barrel racer. It’s probably my favourite rodeo event to watch!


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