'The Grand Entry' of the Rowell Rancho Rodeo kicks off the rodeo in Castro Valley. Cowgirl Brook Fagundes rides down the hill behind the arena carrying the American flag. The Rowell Ranch Rodeo was first held in 1925. (Muna Danish/KQED)
For nearly a century, cowboys, ranchers and spectators have come together in Castro Valley, just off of Highway 580, for a rodeo.
The Rowell Ranch Rodeo was started by Harry Rowell, also known as the "Rodeo King of the West." Rowell, a rancher and businessman, held his first rodeo at his Dublin Canyon ranch back in 1925. Nearly 100 years later, the Rowell Rancho Rodeo still takes place at that same spot.
Today, participants from Colorado, Montana, Canada and even Brazil travel to Castro Valley to participate in the Rowell Ranch Rodeo in front of thousands of spectators. The cowboys and cowgirls compete in various events including bull riding, mutton bustin and roping.
Visitors can check out the Cowboy Experience where families can talk to participants and interact with the livestock.
"These little kids, a lot of them don't get to touch dirt anymore really," says rancher Russ Fields, "and they get to come down here and see all the animals up close, the bulls and the horses."