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Pearl River County Supervisors allow rodeo practice at Fairgrounds

The Pearl River County Board of Supervisors opened the Pearl River County Fairgrounds for rodeo practices, but public events are still not allowed.

The Board cancelled all events at the fairgrounds due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March, according to previous coverage. During Monday’s regular meeting, Board members discussed a request from the Mississippi High School Rodeo Association to use the fairgrounds for the state rodeo finals in June.

Normally the state finals are held in Hattiesburg, but the Mississippi High School Rodeo Association was not able to sell enough sponsors to afford holding the rodeo in Hattiesburg, said County Administrator Adrain Lumpkin.

The junior high school nationals for rodeo have already been cancelled, but the high school rodeo finals have not, said Lumpkin.

No more than 20 people are allowed to gather together outside under the Governor’s shelter-at-home order, which will last until May 25.

The Board discussed the possibility of agreeing to allow the rodeo association to use the fairgrounds in June with no spectators, but District II Supervisor Jason Spence said it would be hard to police how many spectators came to the event. Lumpkin said rodeos usually draw lots of family members. District V Supervisor Sandy Kane Smith said it was too early to know what regulations concerning large events will be in place in June.

The Board approved allowing practices at the county fairgrounds again, as long as participants adhere to social distancing guidelines.