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Annual City-Wide Events

March 30 - April 3, 2005
Laughlin River Stampede
- For the eleventh year, this five-day event will feature America's best cowboys competing in fast-paced, spine-tingling events for over $225,000 in prize money at the Laughlin River Stampede PRCA Rodeo. Special attractions include the appearance of Miss Rodeo America, the Stampede Cowboy Poker Game, rodeo displays, merchandise and crafts, and food and beverage concessions. Various Laughlin hotels plan to offer top name country music entertainment. This event will be televised as part of TNN's Wrangler World of Rodeo.


COLORADO RIVER VALLEY, AZ – The oldest continuous event in Mohave County’s history is slated in Bullhead City this spring: The 55th Annual Burro Barbecue is set for Saturday, April 16, in Bullhead Community Park.

The event occurs in the picturesque setting of a large park on the bank of the Colorado River. It is characterized by family activities, live entertainment, community pride and great food, according to 2005 Burro Barbecue Chairperson Lainie Shimpa.

“We serve hundreds of pounds of prime beef, slow-cooked for 24 hours in underground pits,” Shimpa said. “It melts in your mouth.”

Festivities start at 10:30 a.m. with free entertainment by a live disc jockey, karate and dance demonstrations, a gaggle of games and arts-and-crafts booths for youngsters, old-fashioned carnival rides, a rock-climbing wall, kid’s castle trampoline and team activities like a tug-o-wars. The park offers horseshoe pits, volleyball courts and a well-equipped playground, plus riverfront ramadas with picnic tables on the beach and a large grassy area with a giant ramada where the food and beverages – everything from lemonade to beer - will be served from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.

The Burro Barbecue had been put on by the Bullhead City Rotary Club since 1970, with the proceeds - totaling more than half a million dollars so far - benefiting local youth scholarship programs and funding literally thousands of community improvement projects over the past 25 years. The event can trace its beginnings to 1950, when a few Bullhead City residents decided to throw a free picnic for the area’s 400-or-so residents.

The Arizona Republic newspaper reported it this way in an article published on April 28, 1957: “The Annual Burro Barbecue – a celebration that started as a joke – attracted 7,500 persons to those festivities in 1957. Some 35 burros, dressed out at 75 to 80 pounds apiece, were barbecued in a big pit in a vacant lot in the heart of Bullhead City…Last year the event attracted visitors from 37 states.”

In the years that followed, the Colorado River Valley Hospital Association gained sponsorship of the event to raise funds to build a hospital in the area, a goal achieved finally in the early 1980s. Times changed and around 40 years ago wild burros were replaced as the main course with over 500 pounds of prime beef, but the event has continued to attract thousands of visitors each year. Admission and entertainment is free, with a complete meal of slow-roasted shredded beef with potato salad, baked beans and a roll offered for $6. Admission to the kids games and crafts area, including the kid’s castle, is $5 for unlimited access; the rock wall and carnival rides each have their own small admission fees.

A tug-o-war competition is planned as community fundraiser in which civic and community organizations donate $50 each to participate and the winning team’s club takes the whole purse.

Bullhead City is situated on the eastern shore of the Colorado River near the place where Arizona, Nevada and California meet. The thriving community boasts more than 40,000 residents and a variety of vacation amenities and activities. The area’s wide selection of affordable accommodations - from campgrounds and RV parks to full-service resort hotel/casinos - makes the Colorado River Valley a great vacation value. The region is known across the Southwest as a water-lover’s paradise, offering a choice between the cold, fast-flowing Colorado River and warm, smooth waters of Lake Mohave. Both are perfect for water sports like boating, skiing, personal watercraft and sport fishing throughout the year. Golf, hiking, off-roading, and one of only two underground mine tours in the state are among the activities offered in the Bullhead City area.

For more information, contact the Bullhead Area Chamber of Commerce at (928) 754-4121 or (800) 987-7457

April 20-24, 2005
Laughlin River Run
- More than 60,000 motorcycle enthusiasts will roar into Laughlin for the 23rd Annual Laughlin River Run. This five-day event is the largest Harley-Davidson oriented event on the West Coast. Activities include stunt shows; the Harley-Davidson lifestyle tradeshow; traveling museum; the "river run" to Oatman, Arizona on historic Route 66; custom bike shows; the Miss River Run contest; and a poker run. Motorcycle vendors, exhibits, prize drawings and top name live entertainment will be scheduled for this event. For registration information, or room and concert packages, contact Dal-Con Promotions at 1-714-694-2800, 1-800-357-8223, or visit

June 2005 (dates tba)
Laughlin River Days
- For the eighth consecutive year, the town of Laughlin will be host to exciting professional boat racing on the magnificent Colorado River. The races will feature several classes of boats over the two-day event. Drivers will be challenged to maneuver the narrow one and a quarter mile course while managing the seven-knot current. Spectators will catch the action up close from the shores of Davis Camp.

July - Rockets Over The River
Just after dusk on  July 4, the huge annual Rockets Over The River fireworks display will be free for public viewing along the entire Laughlin River Walk. Just as last year, there will be two displays of fireworks over the Independence Day weekend. Typically, this extraordinary display is one of the most spectacular in the West, and will be choreographed to fabulous patriotic music. Various celebrations are planned at the Laughlin hotels and casinos, and radio stations will simulcast each show's music with speakers set up on the river.

September - Laughlin Professional Bull Riders Built Ford Tough Series

For the eighth year, this Laughlin event is part of the Professional Bull Riders (PBR) 29-stop Tour. Watch the top 45 bull riders from around the world converge on Laughlin for two days of fast action, tossing and bucking as they compete for top placement in the National Finals Rodeo and over $100,000 in prize money. The Laughlin Events Park arena is built for great viewing from every seat and is topped with huge instant replay screens so spectators can watch the contrast between a 160-pound rider and a 2,000-pound bull in slow motion. This event will be televised nationwide on the Outdoor Life Network. For advance ticket purchases, call Prestige Ticketing at 1-800-308-2253. For more information on the PBR, visit

October 15, 2005 - Laughlin Mile Dragon Boat Challenge
This fourth annual Laughlin event will feature local and international teams of 22 participants in friendly race competition, paddling in traditional 44-foot long Chinese war canoes. The canoes are propelled by 20 paddlers, guided by a Steerperson and kept in rhythm by a drummer seated at the bow of the boat while the team maintains a steady and powerful pace for the duration of the one-mile race down the swift Colorado River. Teams race to the shouts of encouragement from spectators, and viewing is free to the public along Davis Camp. The race is combined with a full day of ceremonies including the "dotting of the eye, awakening the dragons" and drumming contests. Dragon Boat teams are social in nature coming from all segments of the community including corporate teams, community teams, high school teams, special interest teams, healthcare teams, etc.

October 20-23, 2005 - Laughlin Run to Fun
The 3rd Annual Laughlin Run to Fun charity motorcycle event will be held October 20 - 23, 2005. All bikes are welcome to the event, and all proceeds benefit local children's charities. Over $15,000.00 was raised for children's charities during the 2nd Annual event. Join the Fun!

November 16-19, 2005  - Laughlin Team Roping FinalsTeam Roping
For the seventh year, the United States Team Roping Championship (USTRC) is scheduled to host hundreds of team ropers as they converge on Laughlin for four days of thrilling activity at the Laughlin Events Park. This event will feature team roping at its best as these ropers use agility, precision and focus to beat the clock and win some of the prize purse. This event is free to the public.

December 31, 2005
Ring in the New Year Laughlin Style
- Live entertainment, DJ's great hit music, party favors and balloon drops are some of the exciting festivities provided by several hotels in their main casinos for the countdown to 2004.

January 6-12 , 2006
Winter Break
- This 4th annual event is a festival celebrating life for the 50+ age group and promises to educate, stimulate, and offer non-stop entertainment and activities - all types of dancing, bingo and slot tournaments, healthy cooking demonstrations, exercise classes, and more. Educational seminars, a trade show, and live entertainment will also be showcased. Choose from a four-day pass for $39 or a full week pass for $50 (prices subject to change). Optional day tours and golf outings are also available for an additional, minimal charge. Tickets and inclusive hotel/activity packages are available from any professional tour operator or travel agent. For more information, visit or call Arko & Associates, Inc. at 480-926-5547.

January 12-15, 2006
Laughlin Desert Challenge
- For the twelfth year, Laughlin is the title series sponsor in the six-race circuit of SCORE International Off Road Racing where 16 classes of desert race cars and exotic race trucks will participate in this event on Saturday and Sunday. From sunrise to sunset, the racers will heat up the 11-mile loop of this desert course with a start/finish in a specially made stadium-style spectator area located at the Laughlin Events Park. Other ancillary events on Thursday and Friday include a Pit Crew Competition, Contingency Row/Tech Inspection, and the always-popular "Laughlin Leap" jump contest.

January 13 thru February 22, 2006
Cloud's Jamboree
- A Rock, Gem, Jewelry, Bead and Mineral Show. This event appeals to the wholesaler, hobbyist, casual enthusiast, and general public. Various Laughlin Hotel/Casinos host the exhibits and vendor displays for this fourth annual dazzling event. For vendor and exhibit information only, please contact Cloud's Jamboree at 1-866-558-7719, or visit their web site at

February, 2006 at Davis Camp by the Laughlin bridge.
"Colorado River Bluegrass Festival," annual event featuring top bluegrass bands from across the country. Among those scheduled are Mountain Heart, J.D. Crowe, The Lost & Found, Cherryholmes Family, Liberty Bluegrass, David Parmley and Continental Divide, and more. Fri-Sun, $13 ,18 and over, $5 age 7-17, free for age six and under, camping $5, free shuttle service between Davis Camp and Ramada Express. Call 928-768-5819 or 928-201-5819 for more information



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