By MAGGIE MENDERSKI
Herald-Whig Staff Writer
PALMYRA, Mo. -- Chase Anderson use to watch his older sister participate in rodeos from his wheelchair, and this weekend the Rockin' A Arena in Palmyra will host one in his honor.
Chase, the son of Joel Anderson and Chloe Anderson-Lovelace, died at age 17 in 2011 from muscular dystrophy. The second Chase Anderson Muscular Dystrophy Association Rodeo will be Friday and Saturday, starting at 7:30 both nights. Last year's event sold out both nights and raised $25,000 for MDA.
"Last year, Saturday was probably over capacity," Joel Anderson said. "Some people come for the show, and some people come in memory of Chase. The local community of Palmyra is amazing."
Chase's father hopes the money raised will generate awareness for the disease and provide other children with muscular dystrophy with the opportunities that Chase had in his life. Chase always enjoyed attending MDA camp in the Bloomington-Normal, Ill., area. His father said the camp provided his son with a sense of normalcy despite his disease.
"It's kind of like they're more normal there," he said. "Everyone that's there as far as the kids have similar situations. We'd sure like that to be able to continue and help in those efforts."
Outlaw Rodeo Productions of Columbia has arranged a full schedule rodeo each night. Tickets are $12 at the door and children age 5 and under are free. Anderson said the rodeo will encourage crowd participation for both children and adults. Prizes will be awarded for the winners.
Anyone interested in volunteering or sponsoring should contact the Rockin' A Arena at (573) 629-1972, or firstname.lastname@example.org.