Special Events in Payson

Payson hosts two rodeos every year that are part of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association circuit. The spring rodeo takes place in mid-May, and the August Doin's rodeo is scheduled for the third weekend in August. Both rodeos feature competitions such as barrel racing, bull riding, and steer wrestling. There are also events in tie-down roping and team roping. The August Doin's is the larger and older of the two rodeos, with claims of events going back as far as 1884. This rodeo also features a parade on Saturday morning and after-party dances on Friday and Saturday nights.

Fiddlers' Contest
Another long-time Payson event, the Old Time Fiddlers' Contest and Acoustic Music Celebration, has been taking place the last weekend in September for more than 40 years. Contestants as young as 3 years old are included in the age-group brackets, and musical entertainment fills in the gaps between competitions. The festivities kick off with a Friday evening concert and run through Sunday afternoon, finishing up with an awards ceremony.

Beeline Cruise-In and Car Show
This annual event occurs in April and features a wide array of classic vehicles from 1930's cars and older on up to muscle cars, pickups, and even the occasional big-rig cab. On the show weekend, Friday is reserved for activities dedicated to show entrants and car clubs with a cruise through town, a barbecue dinner, music, and dancing. Beginning Saturday morning, the show is open to the public and free, with raffles and car judging taking place throughout the day.

Mountain High Games
In early June, outdoor adventure sports enthusiasts take advantage of Payson's cooler mountain temperatures to compete in a variety of events, such as mountain bike races, a trail run, an ATV Rodeo, and archery. Some of the less physical events include a horseshoe tournament, a pinecone toss, and even Dutch oven cooking. The games finish up with a trucks-only Demolition Derby.

Northern Gila County Fair
Although the town of Globe is the seat of Gila County and thus hosts the main county fair, in early September Payson offers a smaller event geared toward residents of northern Gila County. This fair is reminiscent of an old-fashioned fair where the main draws are the agricultural exhibits, food-related competitions, and arts and crafts displays. Another Demolition Derby, this time open to all types of vehicles, is part of the fun.