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      Local state rodeo winner is from the Heartland

      Meet 18-year-old Ethan Rigdon of Queen City. He spent most of his childhood traveling and going to rodeos with his family.

      Rigdon began taking rodeo riding classes at the age of 13 and hasn't looked back since. It's a hobby that is he very passionate about.

      "The work that you put into it's fun and enjoyable. You get in there and it slows down time. 8 seconds feels like it's 8 days. Your heart gets pumping. It's a lot of fun," Rigdon said.

      Rigdon joined the Missouri High School Rodeo Association last year. He has since then gone on to compete and has won numerous awards. His biggest accomplishment was wining first place in bareback riding at the state finals competition just last week.

      "I just wanted to do it. It was my senior year. Might as well try it to see how it went. It went really good. Had a lot of fun. It was rewarding," Rigdon said. His hard work though doesn't come without a little bit of pain too. But Rigdon said it's well worth it.

      "I got kicked in the eye in Iowa City. 26 stitches I got. It was painful...swollen shut. Couldn't see anything for a while. But it was alright," Rigdon said. Rigdon said he wouldn't be where he is today if it weren't for all the love and support from his family and the Queen City community.

      "They've def helped out a lot. Got a lot of sponsors to help pay for things. Lots of family and friends who were always pushing and helping out anyway they can. I want to thank them all for that. It's been a good run with them," Rigdon said.

      Rigdon will next now compete in the National High School Rodeo Association finals next month in Wyoming.

      Rigdon just graduated from Schuyler County R-I High School. He will be attending Iowa Central University in the fall.

      Rigdon hopes to make rodeo his career and hopes to become part of the National Rodeo Association.