The Daily Post

Chronicling San Antonio’s Charros

Five times a year, the San Antonio Charros gather for a traditional Mexican rodeo, charreada (or charrería), the national sport of Mexico, at the Charro Ranch in South San Antonio. From roping and bull riding to competitive synchronized horse riding, hundreds convene to take in the colorful folkloric ensembles worn in celebration of the traditions that originated among the Spanish conquistadors in the sixteenth century.

Photographer and San Antonio native Mia Baxter became fascinated by the Charros on a trip back to Texas (she was living in New York at the time) and started documenting each event a year ago, creating a stunning body of work that captures the many reverent traditions of the Charros. “In New York, I grew distant from my Texas roots, and I wanted to find and document aspects of the state that inspired me,” Baxter says. “Since I grew up in San Antonio, I knew of the charreada, but when I dove in, I was blown away by the depth and richness of its traditions.”

An exhibit of the photos, Nativo, will be on display at Agave Print (1312 E Cesar Chavez) in Austin from May 19-June 19. 

Photos by Mia Baxter


  • texaslover for those looking for more details on this photographer.

  • ericmills

    Hey, I’m a big fan of tradition and cultural diversity, too. But not when it crosses the line into animal abuse, which charreada does in a big way.

    Three of the charreada’s nine standard scored events involve roping the legs of running (and terrified) horses (“horse tripping”)–dangerous for all concerned. And outlawed in a dozen states to date.

    A fourth event, called “colas” or “coleadero” (“steer tailing”) is even worse. Tails may be stripped to the bone (“degloved”), even torn off. And the horses involved may suffer broken legs when the steers run the wrong way. Some “sport”! “Steer tailing” was banned in Nebraska in 2009. There should be a nationwide ban on this cruelty. Neither “steer tailing” nor “horse tripping” is a standard ranching practice anywhere in the U.S.

    See the many YouTube videos if in doubt. Some “traditions” deserve to die. Even Cesar Chavez was an outspoken critic of these abuses.

    Si se puede!

    Eric Mills, coordinator
    Oakland, CA