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IMG_3650 copy (Photo by Christina Reekie) A sea of pink hats filled the stands at Pioneer Park to support breast cancer awareness, while the audience watched a competitor in the bare back riding competition.

This Thursday marked the 167th anniversary of the pioneer settlement of the Salt Lake Valley.

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(Photo by Christina Reekie) Rodeo queen runner-up watches a participant in the steer wrangling contest while sporting a jacket for the “Tough Enough To Wear Pink” breast cancer campaign.

Today their settlement is marked by an annual parade, rodeo and culminates the celebration with a firework display. Pioneer Days is a chance for the people of Utah to celebrate their heritage says Sheldon Cheshire, a participant in the parade. “I like the aspect of being able to celebrate everyone’s heritage, even if they aren’t of pioneer stock,” it’s just nice for everyone to come together for a community celebration.

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(Photo by Christina Reekie) A competitor in the bare back riding competition, close to getting bucked, managed to stay on the horse for the full eight seconds.
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(Photo by Christina Reekie) Contestant taking off his gloves after riding the full eight seconds in the bare back riding competition.

The week long celebration kicked off Monday night with a rodeo at the Ogden Pioneer Stadium in front of a full crowd. “It’s a good rodeo,” saysProfessional Bull Rider Garrett Vig. “I always like coming out here,” touts Vig, “it’s always packed, good crowd, good stock.”

The morning of the 24th saw the community come out to celebrate the Utah pioneers, drawing crowds stretching 11 blocks to watch the varied community organizations strut in the parade. “Pioneer days is one of the biggest traditions that we have in Ogden,” heralds community member Phidia Cutrubus. The parade featured marching bands from local high schools, floats, horse drawn carriages and even Handcart Pioneers from the Ogden Utah Stake.

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