The National Day of the Cowboy is this Saturday, July 23, and the Cowboy Mounted Shooters are planning a bang-up event.

One of the fastest growing equine sports in the country is cowboy mounted shooting and Glen Rose is set to host one of the largest events ever held in Glen Rose. The event is slated for Saturday and Sunday at the Somervell County Expo Center.

A little bit rodeo and a little bit Wild West, cowboy mounted shooting is a competition with mounted riders running a designated course and shooting targets as they ride. The winners are based on times and the number of targets hit.

The Glen Rose competition will be sanctioned by the Cowboy Mounted Shooters Association and hosted by the Lone Star Regulators. It's expected to be one of the largest cowboy mounted shooting events ever held in Texas, with about 200 shooters, including five current or former world champions.

Founded in the early 1990s, cowboy mounted shooting has swept across the United States.

“I have never seen anybody try the sport that did not enjoy it, especially boys and girls 12 and under,” said Mike Males, one of the event organizers. “We even have a fifth grader that competes against the men.”

Several cowboys and cowgirls from the traditional cowboy sports of rodeo and cutting are starting to try their hand at the sport. Joe Beaver, eight-time world champion cowboy, has been one of the highest profile rodeo cowboys to give it a try.

The competition will get underway at the Expo Center at 8 a.m. Saturday and run throughout the day. A special showcase is planned for Saturday night at 7 p.m. Top performers will be featured along with a cavalry demonstration. The competition will continue on Sunday, getting underway at 9 a.m. The public is invited to attend any of the events and there is no admission charge.

“This is the third year for this event and it has grown every year,” said Billy Huckaby, director of the Glen Rose Convention & Visitors Bureau. “This is a great bunch of people to work with and they are always very complimentary of the Expo Center and Glen Rose.”

The National Day of the American Cowboy was founded in 2004 to preserve, promote and protect cowboy and Western heritage. The National Day of the American Cowboy has received official designation by the U.S. Congress on the fourth Saturday in July each year.

To learn more about cowboy mounted shooting, visit www.cowboymountedshooting.com or www.lonestarregulators.com.