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A sold out group await the “go” for the start of the annual Downieville Classic in 2019. This year's event has been canceled due to coronavirus concerns. Photo courtesy Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship

Bike race and rodeo event latest victims of coronavirus

Add two popular regional events to the growing list of coronavirus victims: the Downieville Classic and the Reno Rodeo.

The Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship said it was “with great sadness” that it announced the cancellation of the 25th Annual Downieville Classic, scheduled for July 30-Aug. 2. “Although the decision to cancel was agonizing due to the impact on racers, the volunteers, staff and the community, the decision was necessary,” a statement read. “After sitting down with the Sierra County Public Health Officer, the Board of Supervisors and Sheriff, for the safety of the community, SBTS agreed there is no way a large gathering can happen in Downieville this year.”

This announcement followed the previous cancellation of the SBTS Lost and Found Gravel Grinder, based in Portola.

The Reno Rodeo Association also announced that it has canceled this year’s Reno Rodeo originally scheduled for June 18–27 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“This was not an easy decision, and we know the impacts are far-reaching,” said George Combs, general manager of the Reno Rodeo. “We had hoped the state and nation’s recovery from this pandemic would allow for community events by mid-June and this would be something the region could look forward to. Unfortunately, this global crisis has forced us all to make sacrifices and work through this unprecedented situation. After many discussions with leading government and health authorities, as well as the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, we are certain that this is the right action.”

The Reno Rodeo will be offering guests who have purchased tickets the following three options:

  1. Rollover their ticket to the 2021 Reno Rodeo, which is scheduled for June 17- 26.
  2. Donate the ticket amount to the Reno Rodeo Legacy Project.
  3. Refund the ticket purchase.

Refunds must be requested no later than June 30, 2020. If a request is not submitted, the ticket purchase will default to a rollover to the 2021 Reno Rodeo. The form to request a refund, rollover or donate can be found at RenoRodeo.com. Refunds will be given via check for cash purchases and credit card purchases will go back to the card used. Refunds may take up to 30 days to be processed. Questions and comments can be sent to [email protected].

“The executive team had been working hard looking at every possible option but canceling the 2020 Reno Rodeo is the safest way forward for our fans, staff, volunteers, competitors, vendors, partners, and community,” said 2020 Reno Rodeo President Craig Downie. “We want to thank our rodeo community, your dedication and support mean the world to us. Thank you for your understanding. We look forward to welcoming you back in 2021.”

For more information please visit RenoRodeo.com.

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