COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The Pikes Peak Or Bust Rodeo said it generates $4 million in economic benefits for the community during the course of its four-day event.
Horses, floats and riders paraded through downtown Colorado Springs on Tuesday night to kick off the rodeo.
The event has been a 74-year tradition in Colorado Springs. Proceeds from the event go to military charities.
Pikes Peak Or Bust Rodeo President Gary Markle said he knew the event was positive for the community but now numbers also show its positive for the economy.
"It's incredible. When the analysis was done, we were surprised by the size of the number. $4 million dollars is about $1 million a day in economic benefit to the community," said Markle.
Markle said money is generated from ticket sales and tourists.
"People coming from outside the area, staying in hotels, people eating in restaurants, all because of the rodeo," said Markle.
Dean Hullinger has traveled across four states for the Pikes Peak Or Bust Rodeo.
"I came from Garrett Indiana and it's about 1,200 miles from here and I'll be making it a long trip," said Hullinger.
He's attended rodeos for 60 years but said this one is different.
"This is kind of like the granddaddy of them. You want to see the best and some of the oldest. There is so much history," said Hullinger.
One family said it's one of their favorite traditions.
"We've been coming to the street breakfast and the rodeo for forty years at least you know, long time," said Si Niswonger.
"I love how the whole town just gets together and has a great night together and everything," said Amelia Wright-Niswonger.
"It's always fun to see all the cowboys and cowgirls and all the horses," said Wendy Wright.
The rodeo will run Wednesday through Saturday at the Norris-Penrose Events Center.