The Iowa cowboy loves to do whatever it takes to entertain fans.
When a person thinks of rodeo, hippies don’t usually come to mind.
But for the PRCA Oregon Trail Rodeo, a “hippie” will be the rodeo clown.
Wesley “Hippie” Engelkes will be in the arena, entertaining fans with his brand of comedy.
The Aplington, Iowa man got the moniker when he was riding bulls. He rode bulls for ten years after high school, showing up to rodeos with shoulder-length hair, sandals, a tie-dye shirt and Grateful Dead necklace. To ride, he’d change into boots and jeans. One day he was in the chute, prepping to ride, when a buddy said, “hurry up, you old hippie.” And the name stuck. “Even my dad and wife call me Hippie,” he said.
Hippie’s natural tendency towards humor and joking around comes naturally. In high school, he got into trouble often, so often “I thought I had my own office,” he quipped, of being sent to the principal’s office. He recalls covering a chair with chap stick and wrapping an entire locker room with sewing thread. He was always looking for another exploit.
Hippie loves to have fun at a rodeo, and fans do, too. “You follow me, I’ll follow you, and we’ll have fun,” he said.