The Rawhide Rodeo Company, along with the Monroe Hose Company, is gearing up for the Monroeton Rodeo to be hosted Sunday at Mountaineer Park in Monroeton.

For the last week, fire department members, under the guidance of event organizer Merle Bair, have been setting up for Sunday's competition at the park.

While putting finishing touches on the grounds Friday, Bair said he is excited for the event and is content with work the department has put into it.

"Now we just have to wait and see what happens," he said.

Rawhide Rodeo owner Sam Swearingen, who arrived in town earlier this week from the Buffalo, N.Y. area, said he is excited and optimistic about the rodeo's success.

"It can be difficult to say how things will turn out, but I think the fire company has done a great job setting up and promoting the event," Swearingen said, "From what I've heard, people in the area know about the rodeo and if the weather is good - and it sounds like it will be great - it will be a good time."

Swearingen provides almost all of the animals for the event, which can cause headaches for riders but adds excitement for spectators. He said 60 to 70 competitors are entered for Sunday's event.

Looking to the future, Swearingen commented, "I wouldn't be surprised if next year they add a performance or two to living things up."

Swearingen's son, Colton Swearingen, will be at the rodeo doing a short exhibition show to entertain the crowd and, of course, a rodeo clown will be on hand.

Sam Swearingen also said the children's games are a great idea generated by the fire department. The fire department will be selling cheeseburgers, hot dogs and sausages shortly after the gates open at 9 a.m. until the end of the event at approximately 5 p.m..

The estimated three hour long rodeo will begin at 2 p.m. and feature seven different styles of competition: bull riding, steer wrestling, bare back bronc, saddle back bronc, calf roping, team calf roping and cowgirl barrel racing. Sam Swearingen said the two most popular events are bull riding and cowgirl barrel racing.

Fire department member and co-organizer Justin McCarthy said he is pleased with the support from the community that the rodeo event gathered. Twenty-six local businesses are listed as sponsors on the event's website, www.monroetonrodeo.com

Tickets will be available to be purchased at the gate for the following prices: $12 for adults, $6 for children aged 5-15, and $8 for senior citizens aged 62 and older with identification for proof of age.

There will be five Bradford County residents competing in the event; Chad Alesky and Jim Elchak, both of Monroeton, Dennis Wilcox of Franklindale, and father-daughter duo Randy Morgan and Tiffany Putnam of Troy.

Tim Zyla can be reached at (570) 265-1634; or e-mail: tzyla@thedailyreview.com.