QUICK WIT: Announcer Aaron Ryan works more than 20 rodeos a year, but still loves a home crowd.
QUICK WIT: Announcer Aaron Ryan works more than 20 rodeos a year, but still loves a home crowd. Julia Baker

Rodeo bloke finds his voice

THE scariest night of Aaron Ryan's life came two years ago: he was looking for the pick-up man in the ring having just hit the eight second mark when the arena lights went out.

Ryan found himself with his microphone still on riding bareback in complete darkness.

"So she's black and I'm still on the horse still talking, so I bailed out and managed to survive but no one could see me but they could still hear me, I was still on. I couldn't see anything but I got to the ground and landed on my feet and let everyone know: we're still alive and we live to fight another day! And everyone cheered. You've got to be on the edge of your toes.”

It's a tale befitting a rodeo announcer who has been working the circuit since stumbling upon his talent at the Chinchilla Show rodeo ten years ago, and who said the secret to his success is simply having fun.

"If I'm not having fun they're not having fun. You've got to make it entertaining, you've got to keep it sharp... and if you can relate to something that's happening in the world at the moment... Clive Palmer always gets a fair chewing.”

Since then Ryan's "hobby” has taken him far and wide, from Chinchilla to Charleville, to Sydney, Darwin and Moree, to name a few, and this year he's finally managed to land the big three.

"This year they approached me to go to Mt Isa to do it and that's ticked off the bucket list a bit. I always wanted to do three big ones which was Cloncurry, Mt Isa and Warwick so this year will be the year I get them,” he said.

But no matter how far he ventures from Chinchilla, Ryan said he still gets the most buzz out of announcing in front of a home crowd.

"My favourite rodeo is the Melon Fest rodeo because it's such a massive crowd and the bigger the crowd the easier it is to work with,” he said.

"You get some shows where there is 200 people there and they've been on the sauce all afternoon and they're just full of fun.

"You can do anything with them.

"I've told people 'if you ever want to move me, you'll have to move Chinchilla'. I wouldn't change it for anything.”


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