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National Western Stock Show cancels kickoff parade

The National Western Stock Show and Rodeo parade was to take place Thursday in downtown Denver.

DENVER — The National Western Stock Show and Rodeo is opening its doors this week for the first time in 24 months, but the iconic kickoff parade will not be part of the festivities.

National Western Stock Show organizers canceled this week's kickoff parade due to expected weather issues Thursday morning, said Paul Andrews, NWSS president and CEO.

The parade and cattle drive through the streets of downtown Denver was to begin at noon Thursday at Union Station before marching 12 blocks down 17th Street to Glenarm Place.

The Denver metro area is expected to receive 1 to 4 inches of snow beginning Wednesday evening, but the temperature will drop to around zero by Thursday morning. Parade organizers canceled the parade over concerns of snow, wind and icy conditions on 17th Street.

The Stock Show Fair, scheduled for Thursday at McGregor Square, is also canceled.  

The National Western Stock Show and Rodeo begins Saturday, Jan. 8 and runs until Sunday, Jan. 23.

The 116-year-old tradition brings in thousands of farmers, ranchers and city folk alike to the complex near Interstate 70 and Brighton Boulevard.

Tickets to the 2022 National Western Stock Show are on sale now at NationalWestern.com.

“After meeting with weather professionals, veterinarians, livestock and horse experts, we have decided to cancel the parade this Thursday,” said National Western Stock Show CEO Paul Andrews. “The forecast calls for snow Wednesday evening and continuing through the night. The larger problems are the single-digit temperatures and high winds making for icy conditions. Due to the risk for the parade entries traveling to Denver in high-profile vehicles hauling animals and hitches, as well as the risk for the animals along the parade route, the decision has been made to cancel.”

Leading Thursday's parade procession was to be an assembly of Colorado’s First Responders as honorary 2022 Stock Show parade grand marshals.

"Without question, we want to recognize first responders as our parade grand marshals. These heroic men and women selflessly serve our communities every day," Andrews said. "They dedicate their lives to saving lives and we feel this is the perfect opportunity to honor their service and sacrifice and to express our gratitude."

RELATED: Everything you need to know for the 2022 Stock Show

> Can’t see the map? Click here.

Credit: National Western Stock Show

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