With the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo taking place in Texas in 2020, Las Vegas will still have a presence in the Lone Star State. Two of the most popular ancillary events produced by Las Vegas Events – Cowboy Christmas and the Junior World Finals – will run concurrently with the Wrangler NFR from Dec. 3 – 12.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Las Vegas was unable to host the Wrangler NFR in Las Vegas in 2020. As a result, the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association moved the Wrangler NFR to Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas for one year. Cowboy Christmas will take place at the Fort Worth Convention Center, while the Junior World Finals will be hosted at the Cowtown Coliseum in the Fort Worth Stockyards.
Cowboy Christmas will feature more than 250,000 square feet of show floor and just under 225 exhibitors from across the United States. Right in the center of the show, LVE will host two large interactive booths – NFR Central presented by Resorts World Las Vegas and All Roads Lead to Vegas. The latter booth will include three distinctive areas – NFR After Dark, Cowboy Christmas 2021 and NFR Experience, all of which will promote Las Vegas, the NFR’s sponsor hotels and all of the elements that have made the NFR a must-attend event for 35 years.
“While we are certainly disappointed to be unable to deliver the full NFR Experience in Las Vegas in 2020, we will represent the Las Vegas brand in Texas,” said Pat Christenson, president of Las Vegas Events. “We found out very early in our research that NFR fans found Cowboy Christmas and the Junior World Finals to be essential elements of the NFR. We are pleased to be able to deliver these experiences for rodeo fans, and our presence at Cowboy Christmas will set the stage for 2021 with a new and aggressive campaign that will usher in the return of the NFR to Las Vegas.”
LVE will announce additional promotional elements and plans for 2021 on Dec. 12. The new campaign will include new video elements, Vegas Celebrity Moments featuring the city’s top entertainers and much more.
Known as the richest and most prestigious rodeo in the world, the Wrangler NFR attracts the top 15 contestants in bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, barrel racing, and bull riding to compete for a share of the $10 million purse and the coveted PRCA Gold Buckle. In 2019, the event had a total attendance of 168,289 over the 10 days of competition and has sold out more than 330 consecutive performances in Las Vegas.
Over the 35 years in Las Vegas, more than 5.9 million fans have attended the NFR at the Thomas & Mack Center. During that same span, LVE has paid out more than $173 million in prize money to the contestants.
The Wrangler NFR will return to the Thomas & Mack Center, Dec. 2 – 11, 2021.