FORT WORTH, Texas — The Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo entered its 124th year in a brand new home Friday night, hosting its first rodeo of the 23-day annual event inside the newly constructed Dickies Arena.
The 14,000-seat venue held its inaugural event in November 2019, but Friday was the first time the rodeo got a chance to pack the house.
Fans stood outside gates in the rain, waiting for doors to open.
The FWSSR has come a long way since 1896. In 1918, it was considered the world's first indoor rodeo when it moved into the North Side Coliseum (now called Cowtown Coliseum).
In 1944, the event moved to the Will Rogers Memorial Center on the west side of Fort Worth.
The rodeo and the stock show has been held there ever since.
Now, the livestock show will solely be held in Will Rogers and all rodeo events will be inside Dickies Arena.
As of Friday night, Diane Miles, 83, told WFAA that she's now been in each arena that the FWSSR has called home since its inception.
"I have now been to three different arenas for the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo," Miles said. When WFAA told her that was an impressive feat, Miles responded with a smile by saying, "Yes, I come a lot I don't just come once."
For a lot of fans, Friday night likely could have been their first time at the rodeo.
Mary Couvillier, who goes to the rodeo every year, told WFAA that this is a new era for the city and for rodeo fans.
"The first day, the first show, everything is so exciting," Couvillier said. "For so many people, this is now their rodeo home."
Same tradition, new digs.
For a list of events for the FWSSR, click here.
More on WFAA:
- How to find parking, tickets, and deals for the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo
- Expect warmth and rain for opening day of Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo
- Get ready for the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo: 5 Things To Know
- Fort Worth Rodeo seeing 'unprecedented demand' for tickets for first year at Dickies Arena