The Minot Y’s Men’s Rodeo is in town and for one man this will be his last time in the arena.
In today’s Positively North Dakota, our reporter PJ Walker brings us the story of a bullfighter, encouraging others to follow their dreams, no matter how wild they seem.
“I wouldn’t say it’s so much crazy. Crazy people really don’t know they’re doing I guess,” says Josh Rivinious.
Ever since he was a little kid, Josh Rivinious says he’s always dreamed of being apart of the rodeo.
“I wanted to fight bulls in high school, but my folks wouldn’t let me. And after I graduated, I liked the athletic part about it, and saving people. One thing after another, it took off and here we are.” says Rivinious.
Often confused with the rodeo clown, bullfighters are not only there to protect the rider, but others in the arena as well. He says you have to prepare for that, just like any other sport.
He explains, “I think it benefits you if you’re in shape. Because you’re going to get bumped around and run over and stuff and you wanted to be physically able to take everything that comes at you.
In bullfighting, being injured is almost a guarantee. In 2004 Josh broke his neck, collarbone, and some ribs. For most, that would have been enough for them to retire, but not for him.
“I was out six weeks, but after that we kept going. I was ready to get back at it.” says the Elgin, ND native.
Even though he enjoys the adrenaline and rush from the rodeo, he says the people he has met along the way is what has really kept him going.
He adds, “I’ve got to be able to be around and meet the best people. Like you can not replace them as friends and colleagues, and it’s just the best people to be around.”
And one of those people will miss him just as much.
“He’s a fantastic bullfighter and a fantastic human being, and the last ten years that I’ve got to work with him, one thing is always obvious about Josh. If I’m out in the barrel and In trouble, he’s right there. He’s the first guy.” says JJ Harrison, a rodeo clown.
Now, the transition from bullfighting to full-time dad may take some adjusting, but he says he’s had a good run.
“I was blessed to live out my dream and to end it here in North Dakota where I’m from is pretty special,” says Rivinious.
The Y’s Men’s Rodeo will be going on all weekend and you catch Josh in the ring for the last time, this Sunday.