The J Bar W Ranch sponsored Military Appreciation Night March 7, 2009, at Shipley Arena in Westminster, Md., to demonstrate its continuing support of the armed forces.

J Bar W Ranch sold about 135 discounted military tickets and sponsored another 75 entrants with free admissions.

The evening was a mix of professional bull-riding, a mutton-busting contest for the younger folks and a crowd pleasing bull-hockey event.

Face-painting for the kids, junior rodeo events and the ever popular rodeo clowns capped an evening of family fun.

Following presentation of the colors by the Fort Detrick Color Guard, the crowd was treated to a spirited vocal presentation of the National Anthem sung by Jenni Benson. The anthem was immediately followed by the administration of the Oath of Enlistment to 35 Army and Navy recruits.

During the bull-riding competition, there was no empty seats. Deb Daubenhauser, Chief of NAF Support Management Division at Fort Detrick, said "There was immense crowd participation and attendance."

Autographed T-shirts and ''Army Strong" T-shirts were given out to the loudest sections. A drug- and alcohol-free environment, excellent food and a thrilling show proved the event to be family friendly. In addition to the rodeo itself, visitors could take advantage of food ranging from chili cheese hot dogs to apple dumplings, souvenirs, a photo stand and Army/Navy booths.

Promoters from J Bar W proclaimed the event a success for Army families and military personnel. The next Military Appreciation Night will be Aug. 1.