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Keith McCord ReportingFor the past 50 years West Jordan has had a tradition of putting on a big three day Independence Day celebration. There's a rodeo, parade and other family events. But next year's festivities may be the last.
Cities and towns all across America put on Independence Day activities and for the past 50-years West Jordan has had its "Western Stampede Celebration". The three-day event has been held at the city park. For three days the PRCA circuit does a rodeo in the arena; there are fireworks and a parade and other activities.
Last night, by a 4 to 3 vote, the West Jordan City Council voted to end the "Stampede" celebration after next July, at least end it in it's present form.
Andrew Allison, West Jordan City Council: "The rodeo, it's been losing tens of thousands of dollars each year for the past several years. The attendance, as a percentage of our city's population is quite small."
Plus the rodeo arena needs a significant amount of repair. For the past several years the city has worked on a new master plan for its park. In fact it has 4-million dollars set aside for improvements.
After last night's vote the plan is to remove the arena and several of the ball fields. A new road will ring the entire park, similar to the design at Liberty Park.
Councilwoman Natalie Argyle is upset that a 50-year tradition will simply fade away.
Natalie Argyle: "The rodeo was the heart of the city's celebration. When you remove that, I believe you'll take out the whole city celebration that happens, the parade and the fireworks."
Argyle admits the arena needs improvement, but she believes that there are a lot of West Jordan residents who would like the annual festival to keep going. She's hoping that residents pack next Tuesday’s City council meeting to express their opinion.