For Tumbarumba residents, the only way to break in the new year is with a rodeo.
Hundreds herded through the Showground gates to score the best vantage points for the death-defying action on Monday afternoon.
Men – both young and old – showed their grit as they clung to bucking bulls and storming steers, before being flung to the ground like dolls.
It may be a niche event, but it is one that attracts world-wide interest with a number of the nation’s best cowboys, competing against international riders.
Tumbarumba Rodeo president Tim O’Brien said the 73rd Rodeo – the oldest in NSW – was a great event, with money raised going to the local hospital.
“We’ve got a full around of rodeo,” Mr O’Brien said.
“The reason it’s been so successful is the support of the town.
“The community is strong and works together as a rodeo town.”
He said the event lassoed a great income for the town, with more than 20,000 visitors expected across the day.
Tumbarumba’s home-grown rodeo cowboy Ben Hall returned for the competition on Monday, in the hopes of taking out the top prize.
He said it was always great to return to the place his dream began.