RODEO HOUSTON- the mecca of food, shopping and FANTASTIC hospitality!
Rodeo Houston is one of my favorites. The money & opportunities that the cowboys have is an added plus but what I really can’t get enough of is the hospitality! You arrive and instantly get that Beyonce treatment.
The Hollywood treatment always comes at a price, and in this case the price is a little inconvenience in a massive event center! Because the center is so grandiose and smack in the middle of the city, the contestant parking is at the closest dirt plot capable of fitting some temporary stalls (a few blocks away). In other words, I will be getting ready in the trailer and must anchor my bearings and be able to literally "roll out" at any time. This, my friends, is like getting ready in a bathroom stall on wheels.
Once the slide out on the trailer starts to close, which typically happens mid mascara stroke, we are mobile! It would be nice if we could wait until I'm ready but, I understand my Cowboy’s thinking. When it comes to me getting ready I always overestimate my promptness. I am late. Always late. I am guilty of the “I can nap for an extra 20 minutes because I can do my hair, make up, match myself AND throw a bow on Addy May in 10 minutes, no problem.” So while I'm immersed in my vanity, my sweet cowboy figures the on-the-go tactic is the solution. He's thinks "just take the bathroom with her in it and everyone wins!" I'm not rushed and he's on time! Even if it entails that speed bump impaling a mascara stick in my hair and my smeared lip stick application challenging the likes of Kylie Jenner. After all the bumps and shakes, Addy May and I emerge from our "dressing room" a little tossled and well, sort of put together or what some might consider "chaotic chic"!
The inconvenience of hauling horses, babies and last minute moms to the rodeo is grueling and expected, but my oh my do the staff make up for it ALL! Once we make it to the rodeo there’s a straight shot to hospitality where there are absolutely zero lines and no crowds! Hospitality is first and foremost equipped with a big play area for the kiddos. The play area is a rodeo in itself with the older boys in push cars doing their best Fast N Furious reenactments, while the girls dramatically play in their version of Hell's Kitchen. Now that baby's taken care of we move on to food. After all, the grooming/balancing workout in the trailer takes a lot out of a girl...I'm famished at this point. Lucky for me the food is always splendid with options for every picky eater! A salad bar, buffet line and fridge with every drink possible (besides grown up ‘spicy drinks’) just to get you started. The staff walk around bringing you napkins, telling you your kid is the cutest one there and taking your trash promptly. The food is consistently good and the volunteers… so nice! I always feel a lil’ guilty with the way they treat me. They offer to take my trash and I always want to follow up with a “you know I am not performing in this shindig right?”. Who would’ve thought that I could be so obliged to receive this royal treatment even though I'm only playing the role of bench warmer and toddler herder! This ain’t half bad. But wait...there's more!
The shopping is everywhere and includes a petting zoo, pony rides, and full carnival. Rodeo Houston has nailed the marketing strategy of “one stop shopping", *and "double our markup” for this annual opportunity. So you get it...Rodeo Houston is awesome, for both contestant family & fans. Now this next part is INSANE…
Remember that temporary dirt plot a few blocks away from civilization? It comes equipped with a valet service. Not just the typical car parking valet. That would be too ordinary. This is more of your "movie set" valet. During your stay the valet will take you anywhere in Houston at any time of night. These remote facilities also have a 24/7 coffee and drinks pit stop (I am a HUGE fan). Most importantly, the contestant area comes furnished with a dinner hut. The hut is ran by a volunteer with amazing culinary skills. He cooks beyond exceptional home made meals. I am talking, stuffed quail, ribeye, stuffed chicken, catfish, gumbo and the list goes on and on! Every year we (really just me) get so excited for the after - rodeo, dinner hut! Trust me ladies, you leave this hut, come back to your kitchen at home, and feel completely incompetent and 5 pounds fluffier. No complaints here, it's all worth it!
Out of all of the rodeos I've attended, the hospitality and volunteers at Rodeo Houston are unrivaled! I consider it such a privilege to go and am always humbled by the production of it all.
Until next time my southern mommas!
The infamous closing slide out
Addy May is wearing our Hudson Overalls, $55.00
Hell's Kitchen! The Dinner Hut!
Puddle Jumping in the Dirt Plot!
Enjoying time with our rodeo family at Rodeo Houston!