Saturday, July 15, 2000

Sparta could get a rodeo arena

The Associated Press

        SPARTA — If a Warsaw attorney's plans work out, the Kentucky Speedway will have a rodeo arena as a neighbor.

        Larry Lawrence is working with DER Enterprises of Milford to build the 8,000-seat facility about a mile south of the speedway on Kentucky 35.

        The Kentucky Speedway “is going to be the hottest track in the country for the next two years,” said Jim McElroy, owner of Broken Horn Rodeo Productions of Batavia.

        “We just think it's time to do it, and we think it's really going to fly,” he said. “I think it's going to be real good for the community.”

        Broken Horn Rodeo would bring rodeos and other events to the complex.

        Mr. Lawrence said he will provide about 10 acres for the open-air facility. The plot should also be large enough to accommodate parking, Mr. Lawrence said.

        He said he has more land available if needed.

        Mr. McElroy is taking a builder to other rodeo arenas to get ideas for the Sparta arena. He hopes to have plans within two weeks.

        Mr. Lawrence said he has not entered a construction contract for the facility, which would cost more than $1 million.

        Construction could begin by the end of the year. With good weather, the facility could open next year, he said. If so, a professional bull-riding event could be held in 2001.

        Mr. McElroy expects about 12 International Professional Rodeo Association shows a year at the arena.


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