Meet Trent McFarland. Trent is a professional rodeo clown that’s getting ready by putting on his signature make up. It’s second nature these days for Trent especially since he has been putting it on since he was 13 when his father first asked him to join him in the arena.
“Most kids are born into a rich family. I got extremely lucky and was born into a rodeo clown family. So, when other fathers were teaching their sons how to throw a football, hit a baseball, or cool stuff, my dad was teaching me how to put on makeup,” says Trent.
He has since continued to put on that makeup since those childhood days. For 11 months out of the year, you can find him and his wife and kids at rodeos all across the country, cracking jokes, making people smile, and helping make the rodeo go smoothly.
“I’m hired to be the entertainer, the comedian,” says Trent. “Throughout the show, it’s my job to help during transitions from one event to the other when there’s a break in the arena, and if something goes wrong, it’s my job to say, ‘hey, hey, look at me,’ while they’re doing something in the background.”
He also serves another purpose, and for that purpose, he is assigned the unofficial title of “bull target”.
“Now, during the bull riding I transition a little bit from an entertainer, to more of a safety person. When bull riders get wiped out, I go in and do whatever I can to take the pressure off of them and give the bull a great big target to look at and come to,” says Trent.
When he’s not dancing around in the arena or dodging bulls, you can find him assisting people in another way – In surgery as a nurse.
“I work in surgery as a registered nurse, first assist is my title. It’s cool, my ADD that I have in the arena, the other side of ADD is hyper focus, so we get those really intense cases, I’m zoned in it works really good, crosses over.”
Living the life of a nurse and on the road as a rodeo clown is busy, but he says wouldn’t have it any other way especially when he has his family by his side the whole time.
“I truly enjoy doing what I do, and the majority of that is being on the road with my family.”
He has also roped his wife, Wendy into his act and even takes the kids into the arena sometimes.
“She’s a big part of all the acts that I do, and the boys, you know I got a 3 year old and a 2 year old, Cody and Ryder, and they’re coming along nicely. I’ll get them out in the arena, and they love the spotlight, you know, it’s fun, I’m trying to keep it fun for them,” says Trent.
Keeping it fun, just in case one day they decide to continue the family business, something that Trent says he wouldn’t mind one bit.
“I would be extremely honored for my kids to want to be a rodeo clown, but just growing up around this environment is important to me,” says Trent. “Some of the happiest memories I have of my growing up from the time I was 13, 14 until my mid-twenties, my dad and I rodeoed together about every weekend. We’re extremely close.”
By: John Holcomb