County commissioner doubles as rodeo clown

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There are probably a few constituents out there who believe their county commissioners are nothing but a bunch of clowns. Residents in Tooele County really can say that, because one of their commissioners is a clown -- a rodeo clown.

County commissioner doubles as rodeo clown

Most Friday nights in the summer, you will find Jerry Hurst in a rodeo arena, cheering on the bull riders as a rodeo clown. And each Tuesday afternoon, you can find him in Tooele County, where he appears to be much more serious as one of the county's three commissioners.

"My campaign strategy was, if you like clowns in politics, at least get a professional," he said.

Hurst takes his hobby as a rodeo clown seriously too, with about 25 clown acts he takes on the road each summer.

Hurst was a bullfighter for more than 20 years before giving up that part of the job.

"I've had some injuries. And as a bullfighter, if you aren't getting hurt or getting hit, you are not doing your job. That's what it's all about," he explained.

County commissioner doubles as rodeo clown

As the funny man for the past 12 years, Hurst spends time in the rodeo arena simply to get the crowd to laugh. He travels to rodeos throughout the Intermountain West almost every weekend during the summer.

Rodeo has been a big part of Hurst's family life. His wife, Shelia Hurst, said, "We've had our whole family go with us and they've been raised around rodeo. It's been fun."

Jerry said, "Rodeo's a great sport and I'm just glad to be part of it."

Hurst hopes to still be clowning around long after his days in politics are over.


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