Oct 26, 2020
By Susan Kanode
There are few rodeo contestants who have a family history in the rodeo world like Shorty Garrett, and he’s likely related to most of the others.
Shorty, from Eagle Butte, South Dakota will be competing in the saddle bronc riding at his first Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in December. It’s a moment that he has been waiting for all of his life. He’s watched his uncles, a brother and a brother-in-law compete at rodeo’s championships in Las Vegas (mostly on television) and while he won’t be riding in the Thomas & Mack Center this year, he is hoping that happens in 2021.
His paternal uncles, Mark and Marvin Garrett both won world titles in the bareback riding in Las Vegas. His half-brother J.D. Garrett also made it in that event. His maternal uncle, T.C. Holloway, was headed for a world title in the saddle bronc riding until his untimely death at 24. T.C.’s brother Chuck has been there as a pickup man and in 2017 his brother-in-law Chason Floyd qualified in the steer wrestling. To top it off, his cousin, Cody Taton has made multiple trips in the saddle bronc riding.
Shorty’s father, Juan, is a brother to Mark and Marvin. Most of the other relatives on the list come from the Holloway side of the family and more often than not, those family members compete wearing purple to honor the great Casey Tibbs who was an uncle to Shorty’s mother, Johnilyn.
Juan rode bulls and Shorty tried his hand in that event and the bareback riding before he attempted rodeo’s classic event. A Holloway family rule about riding bucking horses meant that he had to wait until he passed a weight limit. Any member of the family had to weigh over 100 pounds before they could crawl onto the back of a bucking horse. That happened for Shorty as a junior in high school.
His grandfather put on amateur rodeos. Rodeos and ranching have always been part of his life. He joined the PRCA 2014 and has been working towards an NFR qualification since then. He has been traveling with Isaac Diaz and Brody Cress for the past three years. Their positive attitudes and ability to have fun rubbed off. When the chute gates open at the 2020 NFR, Brody will start in third place, Shorty in fourth and Isaac in 14th.
“Making the NFR is a lifelong dream for me,” Garrett said. “Making it with both of my traveling partners is the icing on the cake.”
One on One with the Wrangler NFR Contestant – Shorty Garrett
Favorite movie: Lonesome Dove – I watch it over and over. We watch a lot of westerns, Monte Walsh, Conagher. But Lonesome Dove is always the go to movie.
Favorite current TV show: I don’t watch enough television to have a favorite.
What Super Power would you like to have: To foretell the future.
Favorite dessert: I’m going to go with Mom’s pistachio bars.
Favorite card or board game: I haven’t played a board game in forever. We play pitch going down the road.
If you weren’t in rodeo, what would you be doing: I have some Red Angus cows, so I’d be ranching. And, I have my welding certificate from Casper (Wyoming) College so I can always weld.
Favorite sport, other than rodeo: I like Wrestling, that’s something I did in high school.
Best childhood memory: Tagging along to rodeos with my grandpa, Johnny (Holloway).
Favorite thing you like about Las Vegas: There’s a lot of things to do. When Chason made it, my dad went sky diving. I’m not about to, but it was something he always wanted to do.
What are you looking forward to at your first NFR: Everything! A world title would be awesome and I’m excited to get on all the good horses.
Dream bucking horse to ride: I’ve been fortunate enough to get on a lot of good ones this year. But I’ve always wanted to get on Lunatic Fringe. They retired him so I’ll only get to ride him in my dreams.
What buckle do you wear and why: Ed Hall memorial buckle that I won at the Rosebud (South Dakota) Saddle Bronc Match. I’ve been close to the Hall family forever, so that buckle means a lot to me.
What would people be surprised to learn about you: My Grandma Sharon (Holloway) taught me how to knit.
If you could give one piece of advice to a young rodeo competitor, what would it be: Stay positive and keep moving forward.
Dogs or cats: Dogs – I have two. Two border collies that I use ranching, Hannie and Trip. They are my buddies.
What food would you refuse to eat: I refuse to eat horseradish. I was a little kid and grandpa had some. I wanted to try it. I took a bite of chicken with a bunch of horseradish on it. It knocked the air plumb out of me. Grandpa still laughs about it.
Favorite Music: Old country, I listen to a lot of Don Williams and Dan Seals.
If you could visit anywhere in the world where would you go: Hawaii.
Podcasts you listen to: Rumpchat
Favorite social media channel: I use Facebook and Instagram.