The Texas Gay Rodeo Association was founded in the summer of 1983. November 1984 heralded the first annual Texas Gay Rodeo near Houston, beginning the tradition of the TGRA rodeo, which continues to this day. TGRA is a member of the International Gay Rodeo Association (IGRA), which governs all sanctioned rodeos. Chapters sprouted up across Texas over the years, and currently there are five chapters located in Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, and San Antonio.
In 2000, TGRA started a Spring Rodeo held in Fort Worth or Dallas each March. This rodeo event has become one of the most popular on the rodeo circuit. In addition, TGRA as a statewide organization currently holds an Annual Rodeo, which all chapters get an opportunity to host.
One facet of our many activities is Royalty, where candidates vie for the title of Mr., Miss, Ms. and MsTer TGRA. These ambassadors host fundraisers for TGRA during their candidacy and reign. They then have the opportunity to compete in the Mr., Miss, Ms. and MsTer IGRA contest. This honor has been bestowed upon several Texas titleholders over the years.
IGRA Finals Rodeo is held in October of each year. In 1993 TGRA hosted the Finals Rodeo in Fort Worth, then a mere two weeks later put on the 10th Annual TGRA Rodeo in San Antonio.
That was a busy but rewarding year for all of our sponsors and membership.The growth of TGRA coincided with the fight against HIV/AIDS. The founding members recognized the need for the community to pull together to raise money to combat this epidemic in light of limited government intervention and funding
TGRA is proud of its I.R.S. designation as a 501(c)3 tax-exempt and tax-deductible, not-for-profit charitable organization.
Since we got started in 1983, TGRA members (individual and commercial), Royalty, and local communities have raised and donated over two million dollars to Texas charities primarily, though not exclusively, for AIDS-specific service support.
Other types of agencies are also supported by TGRA contributions: women’s health projects, breast cancer, disaster relief, and children’s programs to name just a few.
Each TGRA chapter decides how to donate its allotted funds, a direct function of how much was raised during the prior year. They may then address any acute needs in their own community.
TGRA is administered and run totally by volunteers there are no paid employees.
The membership numbers in the hundreds. The State Board of Trustees, with an Executive Committee in each chapter, conducts day-to-day operations of the organization. Officers are elected to an annual term. There are many committees within each chapter that exist to meet the wide-range of challenges in hosting rodeos and maintaining a focused charitable concern. Membership participation in TGRA activities, while not mandatory, is appreciated.