Scene in S.B.: Rodeo Clown School

Elks Unocal Rodeo Grounds in Santa Maria Hosts Unique Training Day

Last week, despite never having ridden a horse or tried to rope anything, Richard Gathen submitted his body to becoming a rodeo clown for the day at the Elks Unocal rodeo grounds in Santa Maria.

“The level of detail that goes behind the scenes and the day — there’s so many moving parts, there’s so much prep work, there’s so much enthusiasm to pull an event off like this, and the fact that it goes to all the local youth charities — I’m just absolutely amazed from the start to what the result will be,” said Gathen, the New Jersey–based membership and public relations manager for the Elks national organization of the clown school experience. The afternoon event featured instruction from pro rodeo barrelman Justin Rumford as well as real-deal clown outfits from Wrangler, face painting for adults, and a graduation ceremony.


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