In the Corral December/January 2008


The King of the Cowboys Rides Again

Photo courtesy of Roy Rogers Family Ent. Corp./Roy Rogers
The late Roy Rogers “The King of the Cowboys” and his famous horse, Trigger

Polychrome Pictures/BellaVic Entertainment announced they are developing a Western Family Film Trilogy based on the Western star, Roy Rogers. Rogers voice and image has been published in millions of comic books and music recordings. The deal will be overseen by Roy and Dale Evans’ son, Roy “Dusty” Rogers, Jr.

The stories for the first three pictures, all of which are suitable for family and set in the action-adventure genre, incorporate the little known fact that Rogers was part Native American, Choctaw to be exact. The project also highlights his family’s inclusiveness of children of different races and cultural backgrounds.

Geno Taylor, who heads Polychrome, shared the company’s overall goal for the project by quoting Roy Rogers’ own pledge to parents stating, “A Child’s Trust is a Precious Thing…”

Rogers starred in 87 feature films, 100 episodes of the Roy Rogers TV show, and was voted the Number 1 Western star at the box office in 1943. Atop his trusty horse, Trigger, singing his theme song, “Happy Trails,” the Western icon’s image and voice has also been published in millions of comic books and music recordings.


Photo courtesy of Billy Melville
Orville Strandquist inducted into Cheyenne Frontier Days Hall of Fame

Chuckwagon Great Orville Strandquist Honoured
On October 5, 2007, chuckwagon legend Orville Strandquist became the first Canadian chuckwagon driver inducted into Cheyenne Frontier Days Hall of Fame.

Orville competed at Cheyenne from 1960 to 1992 winning the chuckwagon championship in 1975 and placing inside the top five many times over that period. He won Cheyenne’s Wild Horse Race championship a record three consecutive years from 1970 – 1972. Orville was known as a crowd pleaser and top promoter of the Cheyenne Frontier Days for many years.

He joins other notable Cheyenne Hall of Fame inductees George Strait, Harry Vold and the late Jim Shoulders.



Photo by Pam Asheton
Charles Edward (Chuck) Hayward, December 6, 1924 – October 3, 2007

Empty Saddles
Chuck Hayward, legendary guide and outfitter of the Nahanni and the wild places of Alberta, passed away on October 3, 2007 at the age of 82. A friend to princes and penniless cowboys, Chuck was renowned for his unerring skill at finding ancient trails and blazing trails through the Rockies in areas thought impossible to pass; including a legendary trip from Milk River, Alta., to Fort Steele, B.C.

He is deeply mourned by Laura, his wife and partner of 60 years, two daughters and six grandchildren.




Photo by Joyce Reiner
Jo-Anne saddled up a camel and rode with Canadian Cowboy Country on a tour of the pyramids just outside of Cairo, Egypt. (Desiree Ward is on the other camel and that’s her mother, Franciska, taking a photo.)

Where in the World is Canadian Cowboy?
Rick and Jo-Anne Gardner from the SC Ranch took us along on their ten-day tour of Egypt which included stops at ancient temples, the Sphinx and the Valley of the Kings along the Nile from Aswan to Cairo.

One of Egypt’s top attractions and the last surviving member of the Seven Wonders of the World is the Great Pyramid of Giza. There are three main pyramids in Giza; the Great Pyramid of Khufu (or Cheops), the Pyramid of Kafhre and the smaller Pyramid of Menkaura. Each pyramid is a tomb to a different King of Egypt. In front of the pyramids lies the Sphinx or Abu al-Hol in Arabic, “Father of Terror.” This enormous cat-like sculpture is carved out of a single block of stone.

Jo-Anne said the trip was very exciting but no, she won’t trade her horse for a camel.



Canadian Country Music Awards
The Canadian Country Music Awards held in Regina showcased some of Canada’s biggest country stars.

Hosted by Paul Brandt, the show opened with Emerson Drive with their big hit “Moments,” before taking home a hat-trick of CCMA Awards: Single of the Year, CMT Video of the Year and Group or Duo of the Year.

Saskatchewan’s hometown boy Brad Johner was presented with Male Artist of the Year.

Other awards over the night included Roots Artist of the Year to Corb Lund for the second year in a row. Doc Walker took home Album of the Year kudos for the band’s self-titled CD, and B.C.’s Aaron Pritchett took home SOCAN Songwriter of the Year for his country anthem “Hold My Beer.”

For the second year in a row, the Chevy Rising Star of the Year winner walked away with not only the award but also a vehicle from Chevy. This year it goes home to multiple-nominee Shane Yellowbird who performed his big hit “Pickup Truck” for fans.

And one of the biggest awards of the night – the Kraft Cheez Whiz Fans’ Choice Award – was won by Terri Clark who accepted from the road.

corral_1207_05a corral_1207_5b corral_1207_5c corral_1207_5d
Eli Barsi singing at the Gospel Showcase Brad Johner, Male Artist of the Year Emerson Drive were winners of a hat-trick of CCMA Awards Corb Lund accepting Roots Artist of the Year

Photos courtesy of MaxTrax

Cowgirl Cattle Company Helping Little Buckaroos
The fabulous women of the Cowgirl Cattle Company recently donated $20,000 to the Alberta Children’s Hospice.

Alberta’s first hospice for children will be built next door to the Alberta Children’s Hospital. The $7 million dollar facility will help families caring for children with progressive and life threatening illnesses, and the proximity to the hospital will enable parents to take comfort in knowing that emergency specialists and caregivers are literally steps away. The opening of the Hospice is planned for September of 2008.

The Cowgirl Cattle Company is a consortium of ranch women who raise money for charity.

The Cowgirls also purchased another “cow” and are encouraging new members (and original members) to send in their cattle brands (and membership dues) by January 15 to assure their brands are painted on the new cow. Brandy is the name of the first cow, and the CCC is looking for name suggestions from the members.

Perhaps they should call her Cinch, in honour of Canadian ranchers who, once again, have to cinch up their belts another notch because of the devastating drop in cattle prices.

Alberta Producers Win National Award

Photo courtesy of Brown Creek Ranch
Brian and Shaunere Lane pictured above on their ranch near Claresholm, Alta.

Brian and Shaunere Lane of Brown Creek Ranch near Claresholm have won the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association National Environmental Stewardship Award.

Over the years, the Lanes have implemented various changes, based on swath and rotational grazing, to improve the condition of the soil, grass, and water sources. Eliminating the need for equipment to bring feed to the cattle in the winter and take the manure away has resulted in large energy savings costs. The Lane’s were nominated by the Alberta Beef Producers.

The Lane family combine a cow/calf operation in the Porcupine Hills west of Claresholm with their other ranch business, Brown Creek Ranch Vacations.


Photo courtesy of Glenbow Museum Archives
Tom Three Persons from the Blood Reserve in southern Alberta, is the first Canadian inducted into the National Cowboys of Color Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas

Canadian Cowboy Inducted into National Cowboys of Color Hall of Fame
The National Cowboys of Color Museum and Hall of Fame’s Class of 2007 include four stars of rodeos and horse shows, two entertainers and a military hero.

Red Steagall, a musician and former Texas poet laureate who lives on a ranch near Azle, and barrel racer Verna Lee Booker Hightower, one of the first African-American women to compete in professional rodeo, were among those inducted in 2007.

The other inductees were calf roper Rufus Green Sr.; bronc rider Tom Three Persons of Alberta; Nathaniel “Rex” Purefoy, a Western tricks entertainer; Frank White, a Tennessee walking horse showman; and Cathay Williams, the only documented female Buffalo Soldier.

Three Persons, (1896 – 1949) who was named the World Champion Saddle Bronc Rider at the 1912 Calgary Stampede after successfully riding the notorious Cyclone, was inducted into the Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in 1983. After retiring from a profitable rodeo career, Three Persons raised thoroughbred horses and Hereford cattle on his ranch west of Spring Coulee, Alta., until his death in 1949.

Three Persons is the first Canadian inducted into the National Cowboys of Color Hall of Fame.


Winston Bruce inducted into National Cowboy Hall of Fame

Photo courtesy of Winston Bruce
1961 World Champion Saddle Bronc
Rider Winston Bruce

Congratulations to Winston Bruce on his induction into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. Bruce, a well known personality in the rodeo business, was born in Stettler, Alta, and began his rodeo career working with his rodeo producer and stock contractor father, Lawrence Bruce.

By the age of 17 Bruce won his first of two Canadian Novice Saddle Bronc Championships. He then joined the professional ranks where he won the World Rookie of the Year and twice won the Canadian Professional Saddle Bronc Championship in 1957 and 1958.

Bruce became World Champion in 1961 and held reigns in the World Top 10 rankings for nine consecutive years from 1959 – 1967, retiring from competition in 1969. Along with his rodeo career, he also ran his own rodeo college and served on the C.P.R.A. and P.R.C.A. Board of Directors. From 1970 until his retirement, Bruce was the Arena Director for the Calgary Stampede.

Bruce was inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in Colorado Springs, Co. in 1989 and into the Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame in 1995.