Special to the Journal

The Belton Area Chamber of Commerce announced that the Grand Marshal of the Belton 4th of July Parade this year will be Charlie Throckmorton, the voice of the Belton 4th of July Rodeo since 1990.

The theme for this year’s parade is “Celebrating 100 Years of Rodeo” so it is fitting that one of the most recognizable people of the rodeo serves as the Grand Marshal. Throckmorton has announced the Belton 4thof July Rodeo for the past 34 years.

Throckmorton is enthusiastic about returning to Belton again this year, stating, “The tradition runs deep, emotions run high, and patriotism is in the air we breathe! That’s Belton, Texas over a 4th of July.”

Rodeo Director Keith Smith added, “Charlie’s passion for rodeo in Belton is tremendous; he calls this rodeo his hometown rodeo. We are very proud to have him as our announcer for the 4th of July Rodeo.”

Rodeo announcer Charlie Throckmorton announced his first rodeo in 1969 while still in high school. Now a Gold Card member of the PRCA, he has covered rodeo and bull riding competitions in 44 states across the nation and has also served on the PRCA Executive Board of rodeo in the Texas Circuit.

In April 2007, Throckmorton was inducted into the Texas Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame. This honor is in recognition of his abilities and contributions to the sport of rodeo. Throckmorton’s voice has been heard on live television, the National Finals Rodeo, PBR World Finals, as well as many state fairs and rodeos throughout the country.

“We are excited to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the first Belton 4th of July Rodeo, started by Ellis White Holland, Sr in 1924,” stated Randy Pittenger, President/CEO of the Belton Area Chamber of Commerce.”

“The rodeo is a great tradition for our community,” added Pittenger, “bringing families together for an evening of fun, excitement, and entertainment. We appreciate the support of our many sponsors and volunteers, as well as the rodeo professionals making it possible for us to enjoy this wonderful tradition.”

The annual parade serves as the centerpiece of a week-long 4th of July celebration in Belton that will start with a Downtown Street Party on the Courthouse Square on Saturday, June 29.

The 4th of July will be full of festivities, including the Patriotic Program, Parade (starting at 9:00 a.m. again this year), Carnival and Festival on Nolan Creek in Liberty Park featuring the High5 Hot Dog Eating Contest and Rev, White & Blue Car Show, opening night of the 100th annual PRCA Rodeo at the Cadence Bank Center (formerly known as the Bell County Expo), then finishing the day with the Backyard Party at Schoepf’s Concert and Fireworks.

For more information about these events, visit the website at www.beltonchamber.com, call 254-939-3551, or email info@beltonchamber.com.