In the Corral December/January 2007


2006 MERA/Manitoba 4-H Young Horse Development Project

Two-Year olds: Manitoba 4-H members presenting two-year-olds: (L to R) back row: Leah Coffey, Marsha Dudar, Kelsey Howell, Cassandra Lepp, Bradley Miller, evaluator: Kelly Stuart. Front row: Anita Fewings, Caitlin Tingey, Chenise Puchailo, Julie Mitchell.
Photo by Wilf Davis

The Manitoba 4-H Young Horse Development Project held their eighth annual presentations this past August at the Beautiful Plains Fairgrounds in Neepawa. The project is a joint initiative of Manitoba 4-H and the Manitoba Equine Ranching Association (MERA), a member of the North American Equine Ranching Information Council (NAERIC). The project provides a venue for senior 4-H members to demonstrate their knowledge gained through the 4-H Equine Program, as well as to showcase the stock being bred and raised on Manitoba’s equine ranches.


Convoy Crossing Canada, Collecting “A Gift” for Operation Christmas Child

Photo courtesy of Samaritan’s Purse – Canada
Paul Brandt drove across Canada, collecting packed shoeboxes of gifts for Operation Christmas Child

Paul Brandt hit the road with an 18-wheeling Christmas Convoy, driving across Canada from October 10th to 27th collecting shoeboxes full of gifts to send to children overseas with Operation Christmas Child.

Paul has made history as the most awarded male country artist in Canada. His music has gained him recognition through 14 CCMAs, six Juno Awards and multi-platinum record sales. Along with these accomplishments, Paul has taken the opportunity to be involved with a variety of humanitarian organizations including Samaritan’s Purse, an international Christian relief organization reaching those in need around the world.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse accepting shoeboxes packed with gifts of toys, school supplies and necessity items for children overseas who may otherwise never have the blessing of receiving a Christmas gift.

During his stops, Paul signed autographs for fans, thanked the media for their support and shared new music from A Gift, his new Christmas album set for release in early November. For more information on Operation Christmas Child, visit or call 1-800-303-1269.

By the way, Paul Brandt is preparing to release a new 10-year anniversary studio album in spring 2007. While Paul’s on the Christmas Convoy tour, his wife Liz Brandt is doing all the chores.

Johny Boychuk 1905 – 2006

Photo courtesy of Rachel Boekel

John Boychuk, life long resident of the Bow Valley and former owner of Johnny’s Riding Stables, passed away peacefully in Canmore on September 26, 2006 at the age of 101 years.

Born in the Yorkton, Saskatchewan area, John came to the Bow Valley in 1926 to start work with Brewsters doing anything and everything that they could give him to do. He continued on through life working for the railway, highways, parks and Douglas Lake Ranch in B.C. He started his riding stables first at Emerald Lake and then just outside of Harvey Heights at Johnny’s.

He also proudly served his country in WW II serving throughout England and western Europe. John is survived by his nephew Roy (Joan) Konrad of Kamloops, B.C. and their children Roy Jr. of 100 Mile House, B.C.; Deborah, Chilliwack, B.C.; Teresa Lovtvedt, Surrey, B.C.; and Brenda of Kamloops, B.C. as well as their families. His lifelong passion for people left many others in the valley as his extended and loved family. Johnny was laid to rest in the Field of Honour at the Canmore Cemetery. Johnny remained independent to the end.

Empty Saddles

Photo By Terri Mason
Glen Dudley “Star Child” Rafuse 1936 – 2006

Cowboy poet Glen Rafuse passed away suddenly October 5th at his home by Bowden, Alta. Glen, a respected stockman and working cowboy, wrote and recited cowboy poetry long before the rest of us thought of it, often under his pen name, Star Child.

Glen always had a touch of the wanderlust. He was a working cowboy and cow boss all his life and rode for some pretty big outfits including the Hayward Sheep Ranch by Kamloops, the Gang, the Imperial Ranch by Hanna, the Turner Valley Ranch and was the cow boss of the Canadiana by Airdrie. From 1969 to 1972 Glen ran over 1,000 head at the Lacombe Research Station, where he introduced the use of saddle horses to the cattle operations, designed efficient corral and weighing facilities and supervised the transition from pasture breeding to artificial insemination.

As a poet, Glen headlined at major gatherings and private events across the West and in 2005, his image graced the poster for the Stony Plain Gathering.

He was an avid curler and loved to watch figure skating while his talent as a relief wood carver occupied many winter evenings. He also designed and built fences ranging from utilitarian barbed wire to peeled post ranch gates. His memorial was held October 12 in Innisfail.

CCMA Awards Celebrate “Scruffy” Hurtin’ Albertan

Album of the year: Corb Lund: Hair In My Eyes Like A Highland Steer

Some of Canada’s biggest country stars were showcased at Harbour Station in Saint John, New Brunswick on September 11 including self-proclaimed “scruffy” Albertan Corb Lund, who with his band, The Hurtin’ Albertans, performed the title track from Hair In My Eyes Like a Highland Steer, which won Album of the Year. Corb also won Roots Artist of the Year.

Who Won What
Single of the year: Somebody Wrote Love, George Canyon
Album of the year: Hair In My Eyes Like A Highland Steer, Corb Lund
SOCAN songwriters of the year: Jesus, Take The Wheel,
written by Brett James / Hillary Lindsey / Gordie Sampson;
recorded by Carrie Underwood)
CMT video of the year: East Bound And Down, The Road Hammers
Female artist of the year: Carolyn Dawn Johnson
Male artist of the year: George Canyon
Group of the year: The Road Hammers
Roots artist or group of the year: Corb Lund
Chevy trucks rising star award: Johnny Reid

Where in the World is Canadian Cowboy?

Photo courtesy of Béatrice Obrist

One of our international subscribers, horsewoman Béatrice Obrist, sent us this photo from Ohmstal, in the middle of Switzerland. Her tiny village (350 people) is in the canton of Lucerne and is surrounded by mostly dairy and beef farms.

Becker wins Bascom Award

Photo courtesy of CPRA / Mike Copema

At the Whoop Up Days Pro Rodeo, held in Lethbridge, Alta. last weekend, it was announced that the winner of the inaugural Earl W. Bascom Award was Marty Becker (Cardston, Alta.).

John Bascom, son the late Earl W. Bascom, recently contacted the Lethbridge and District Exhibition with a request to present an award on his father’s behalf.

With Lethbridge celebrating their 100th anniversary – which coincides with what would have been Earl’s 100th birthday – the decision was made to present an annual award to the pro cowboy or cowgirl who makes the most money in one or more events at the Whoop Up Days Pro Rodeo each year. The winner must also have proven local heritage to the Lethbridge area.

Becker picked up two cheques at the event. He placed fourth in the tie-down roping, winning $915 and won another $1,710 with his partner Joe Beaver (Huntsville, Tex.), after their second place finish in the team roping.

Becker will have his name inscribed on a bronze trophy. If any contestant wins the award two years in a row, they will be awarded the trophy, which is valued at $16,000.

The trophy will be replaced by the Bascom Family when claimed and will be placed on display in a variety of local locations throughout the year.