That’s because Riordan’s beard — a slender rope of carefully gathered, rubber-banded hair that brings to mind a rattlesnake crawling out of a hole — is nothing less than organic Western art.
Riordan’s beard hangs about 5 feet from his chin, like a reddish exclamation mark in front of nearly every inch of his 5-foot-9-inch frame. Not surprisingly, it’s the focus of questions, comments and cellphone camera lenses whenever Riordan leaves the house. And, on Saturday, it’ll be put to practical use when Riordan competes in the Whiskerino competition at the Las Vegas Elks Helldorado Days celebration.
Helldorado Days runs Thursday through Sunday with a slate of attractions that includes Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association rodeos, mutton bustin’ competitions for kids, a Saturday morning parade, a carnival, live music, exhibits, food and drink — including a beer tent — vendors and, of course, that signature Whiskerino contest.
The celebration and rodeo will take place at the Downtown Rodeo Grounds, located at at 100 S. Grand Central Parkway, next to the Smith Center for Performing Arts. Gates open at 5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets at the gate range from $20 to $35 for adults and $15 to $20 for children.
For advance tickets, more information and a complete Helldorado schedule, visit the Elks’ Helldorado web site (www.elkshelldorado.com).
Along the way, Las Vegas Elks Helldorado Days also raises money for area nonprofit organizations. “Over the years, we’ve given away millions of dollars to local charities as a result of Helldorado Days,” Buell says.
This year’s beneficiaries, each of which will receive a portion of ticket proceeds, are The Animal Foundation on Thursday, Boys and Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada on Friday, Shade Tree Shelter on Saturday and Project 150 on Sunday.
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