The tiny burg of Hamel, just half an hour northwest of Minneapolis (near Medina), is probably best known for one thing: its summer rodeo. This year's four-day bonanza is once again the biggest in the state, and, as always, is paid for by six Hamel nonprofit organizations, which use the event to raise money for worthy causes. Thursday evening's "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" night will have cowboys and cowgirls riding around in the feminine color to raise money for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, followed by a benefit dance at Inn Kahoots (45 Hamel Rd., Hamel; 763.478.6070). Friday will feature free pony rides for kids, and a post-rodeo concert at Inn Kahoots with Brian Gleason's Relentless Band. Saturday is family matinee day, with tickets going for a dirt-cheap seven bucks, and kids' activities including a stick horse race. Sunday, the rodeo winds down with a gigantic flea market at the Medina Ballroom (500 Hwy. 55, Medina; 763.478.6661) and a parade at 2 p.m. down Hamel's Main Street. In addition to these special events, each day includes bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, steer wrestling, calf roping, team roping, ladies' barrel racing, and the Kiesner Family rodeo performers. For more info call 763.478.6611 or visit www.hamelrodeo.org.
July 9-12, 7:30 p.m., 2009