June 16, 2016
A short time ago the International Gay Rodeo Association (IGRA) received the following statement issued by the Alberta Rockies Gay Rodeo Association (ARGRA):
"The Alberta Rockies Gay Rodeo Association (ARGRA) is a Calgary based not-for-profit society that is solely volunteer-driven.
"Alberta has suffered a severe economic downturn over the past year which has negatively impacted those sponsorships on which ARGRA relies. Over the past year, ARGRA has done everything that it could to operate in this difficult economic environment; however, it became clear that despite our best efforts it was necessary to cancel the 2016 Canadian Rockies International Rodeo and Music Festival (2016 CRIR).
"Further, as a result of the lack of financial resources, the Alberta Rockies Gay Rodeo Association (ARGRA) has ceased all operation, effective immediately.
"ARGRA sincerely apologizes to all those supporters in the community that this decision affects.
"The ARGRA Board of Directors"
In light of ARGRA's cessation of activities, IGRA perceives this as a statement of their insolvency and an intent to dissolve their corporation, consistent with typical processes followed by other not for profit corporations in Canada and Alberta in similar circumstances.
Such grave news is never welcome, and IGRA regrets the series of events that has led ARGRA to this decision. We regret also the impact this decision will have on their members, the local community, their charity partners, sponsors and business partners, and particularly the fans who have supported them over the years and who were anticipating joining in the rodeo and music festival this summer, now cancelled. Because ARGRA is an independent entity, IGRA has no direct knowledge of their financial condition or guidance to give to creditors or ticket holders who may be left with little recourse in pursuing claims for compensation. You may wish to explore avenues available through your credit card companies, ticket vendors, and otherwise as provided through Canadian authorities.
The loss of any association is always deeply felt. That is especially true in this case because of the unique flavour our Canadian members bring to our international rodeo circuit, and because the stain of insolvency threatens to blot out the long record of good compiled during ARGRA's 23 year history, a record which includes more than $250,000 donated to charity.
IGRA and its 20 Member Associations will continue to produce rodeo events, promote the country and western lifestyle, and support our communities through charitable fundraising. We invite all rodeo enthusiasts everywhere to attend an upcoming rodeo or to join an association and become involved. Visit igra.com for a schedule of upcoming rodeos, a listing of local associations, and information on forming an association in your area.