How the TaxSlayer Center turns an ice rink into a rodeo stadium

MOLINE, Illinois -- The TaxSlayer Center is saddling up for a rodeo, converting the hockey rink into a dirt arena.

The Cinch World's Toughest Rodeo is on Friday, Jan. 18, and Saturday, Jan. 19, and will feature bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, bull riding, women's barrel racing and even a rodeo monkey.

But how does the TaxSlayer Center turn ice to dirt and back to ice again?

Kevin Snodgrass, director of operations, told News 8 the ice actually never leaves.

"The ice stays in year round so the time we put it in in September until we put it in April or May," Snodgrass said. "We did it in basically about 12 hours ... last night getting ready for the dirt to come in."

Snodgrass said crews covered the ice in several layers including fiberglass and wood to keep the ice safe and insulated.

Then, 66 truckloads of dirt rolls in, eventually covering the floor in 6-8 inches.

When the rodeo is over, it's time to scrape it all back out.

"More time is probably spent in (taking it) out because there's more cleaning involved," Snodgrass said. "Then, we have to reset for hockey."

The rodeo starts at 7:30 p.m. both nights.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.