Staff ReportRifle, CO Colorado

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November 7, 2012
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Ag Briefs - Nov. 8, 2012

C.J. Vondette, 22, of Rifle, recently won the title of Women's Professional Rodeo Association's Mountain States Circuit Barrel Racing Rookie of the Year.The circuit includes Colorado and Wyoming, with some of the top barrel racers in the world competing for prize money and awards.Rock Springs, Wyo., was the site for the 2012 Mountain States Circuit Finals Rodeo, where Vondette received the honor.Ranked sixth going into the finals, Vondette made three solid barrel racing runs, placing second in the first go round to another Rifle native, Kim Schulze.The second round saw Vondette again pick up a second place check.The final round, held on Saturday, Oct. 27, saw Vondette's gray American quarter horse gelding Cache A Mount slip badly on the third barrel and cost precious seconds, and she finished fifth.In the average race, Vondette placed second, which moved her to the reserve circuit championship.Earlier in October, Vondette represented the Mountain States at the All American Pro Rodeo Series Finals in Waco, Texas, where she earned nearly $1,400 with two fourth place finishes against some of the top horses in the world. Only 30 of the top barrel racers in the world were eligible to compete.

The Colorado Tourism Office and Colorado Department of Agriculture have teamed up to boost opportunities for travelers and to capitalize on the boom in agritourism experiences across the state. Currently, there are only two states in the U.S. that do not offer agritourism experiences of some kind, Alaska and Nevada. Colorado is the first in the nation to pair heritage tourism and agritourism.A 2007 Colorado State University study found 75 percent of travelers participated in at least one agricultural, food or heritage activity on their trip to Colorado.The 2007 Census of Agriculture found that of the 37,054 farms in Colorado, only 679 (less than 2 percent) reported agritourism income. This revenue was gained mostly from traditional hunting, outfitting and horseback rides, along with increasingly popular farm dinners, cheese-making classes, ranch stays and canning classes.Regional strategic planning sessions are scheduled around the state to educate potential providers about the benefits of getting in the game and to hear from those currently involved in agritourism.A planning session is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 1 to 3 p.m., at the Rifle Branch Library, 207 East Ave. To RSVP, contact Laura Grey, Heritage & Agritourism Program Manager, Colorado Tourism Office, 1625 Broadway, Suite 2700, Denver, CO 80202, or call (303) 892-3885 or email

Rifle's Devon Vondette, a freshman at Colorado Northwestern in Rangely, made her debut in the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association's Cedar City, Utah, rodeo on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 7-8.Vondette placed fourth in the long round of the barrel racing event and came back in the short round to place seventh.She ended up gaining points for a tie for sixth position in the average, putting the college women's team on the standings board for the first time ever.In breakaway roping, Vondette's time of 3.7 was one-tenth too slow to make it back to the short round. She was 13th in the long round.Casper, Wyo., hosted its Tribute to the Great American Cowboy Professional Rodeo Cowboy's Association rodeo on Thursday and Saturday, Nov. 1 and 3.C.J. Vondette made the trek to Casper and rode home with the barrel racing title.C.J. Vondette's time of 14.83 seconds, aboard the gray American Quarter Horse gelding Cache A Mount, earned her a check for $1,242.Another Rifle native, Kim Schulze, was fourth with a time of 15.02 and a check for $769.With the PRCA's Wrangler National Finals Rodeo on the horizon, current rodeos count toward the 2013 professional rodeo season.

The Bookcliff, Mount Sopris and South Side Conservation Districts and Garfield County Vegetation Management are offering cost share for fall treatment of noxious weeds. A treatment plan is required and essential for success. Russian Knapweed and Canadian thistle are examples of noxious weeds that respond to fall treatment.The key to controlling Russian Knapweed is to stress the weed and cause it to expend nutrient stores in the root system. The best management plan includes cultural control, combined with mechanical and/or chemical control. Be persistent with Canadian thistle, so the weed is continually stressed, forcing it to exhaust root nutrient stores.Call 945-5494, ext. 105, for more information or to receive an application. Deadline for fall applications is Nov. 30.

Colten Fritzlan headed to Helena, Mont. on Wednesday, Oct. 31, to compete in the Northwestern Miniature Bull-riding Finals for the third year in a row.The finals consist of 10 boys each from Wyoming, Montana, Utah, and Idaho. Fritzlan rides for the Wyoming association, coming in second in their standings. The competition is three long rounds, with the top 12 advancing to the short round. Fritzlan was also asked to provide four of his own bulls for the finals: Charlie, Jungle Cat, Psycho, and Sniper.Fritzlan drew Bert of CRC Bucking Bulls for the first round on Thursday night. He rode him to the tune of 67.5 for the round, which placed him at 16th in the round. Friday night, he drew Kool-Aide of CRC Bucking Bulls and rode him to 71 points, fifth in the round and keeping him strong in the average. Fritzlan's bulls also performed well, with no one able to cover Charlie, Sniper or Jungle Cat. Later on Friday night, Fritzlan had consistency on his mind as he prepared to ride Dragon Fly of Rocky Mountain Buckers. He fell a little short of the whistle, but had enough with his first two bulls to finish 11th out of the 12 boys in the short round. Fritzlan was second to last to draw and come up with Double Clutch Again of Rocky Mountain Buckers, and rode him to 76, to put him 214 on three head. The score won Fritzlan the short round and ended with a sixth place standings overall. Fritzlan was pleased with his performance, and brought back prize money, a short round buckle, and a new gear bag. Fritzlan's bulls, Charlie and Sniper, were brought back to the third round and performed great, as they remained unridden for the finals. Jungle Cat was back to the short round and was covered for 75.5. Fritzlan was happy with the way his bulls performed and is excited to be back and ready for the new seasons to start.

Farmers and ranchers who previously were forced to sell livestock due to drought have an extended period of time in which to replace the livestock and defer tax on any gains from the forced sales, the Internal Revenue Service recently announced.To qualify, the livestock generally must be replaced within a four-year period. The IRS can extend this period if the drought continues. The one-year extension of the replacement period generally applies to capital gains realized by eligible farmers and ranchers on sales of livestock held for draft, dairy or breeding purposes due to drought. Sales of other livestock, such as those raised for slaughter or held for sporting purposes, and poultry are not eligible.Eligible counties in Colorado include Garfield, Mesa and many others.Farmers and ranchers in these areas whose drought sale replacement period was scheduled to expire at the end of this tax year, Dec. 31, 2012, in most cases, will now have until the end of their next tax year.

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The Post Independent Updated Nov 7, 2012 06:54PM Published Nov 7, 2012 06:50PM Copyright 2012 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.