In the Corral June/July 2010


Kamloops Cowboy Festival

It was new jeans and old friends at the 14th annual Cowboy Festival in Kamloops, B.C. The stellar lineup included: Tim Hus (and bass player Riley Tubbs); laconic Dave Longworth; Diamond Doug Keith; B.C. Cowboy Hall of Fame inductee Frank Gleeson; Lone Prairie Band (Allen Christie, Jess Lee and Lain Roth); cowboy singer Michael Hurwitz; cowgirl singers Belinda Gail, Joni Harms, Tiffany Dowhan and Chris Schauer; poet Larry Maurice and, of course, Ol’ Ugly – just to mention a few – who entertained capacity crowds.

The Joe Marten Memorial Award is presented annually to someone who has helped to preserve cowboy heritage in B.C. This year the award went to Merritt saddle maker Andy Knight. The Art of the West Show, sponsored by Canadian Cowboy Country magazine, saw awards presented to:

FLAT ART: Shannon Lawlor won first in both the Judge’s Choice and the People’s Choice; Gordon Manson, second; Gena LaCoste, third and Lyn Melnechenko, second in People’s Choice.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Liz Twan took the blue ribbon; Kim Taylor earned second and Krista Kay third.

SCULPTURE: Linda Kelly won first; David Maldaner, second and third to Nancy McMinn. Special thanks to David Ciriani, the Art Show Committee chairman for another impressive show.

NON-PRO SADDLEMAKING: This competition, judged by Chuck Stormes, proved another big success. In the Amateur division, Shane Pittman earned first, Codey Tippe second and Jody Christie third.

PROFESSIONAL SADDLEMAKER: This class was won by Andy Knight, who also received the second place ribbon. Ryan Cope, winner of the competition for the last two years, came in third.

For a full list of Hall of Fame inductees, visit the BC Cowboy Heritage Society For nomination forms, visit the Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin

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 Joe Marten Memorial Award recipient Andy Knight shares the stage with award founder Traudl Marten at Kamloops Cowboy Festival
Photo by Donna Smith
 Andy Knight’s winning saddle was awarded first place by master saddle maker and judge, Chuck Stormes. Notice the unique saddle strings; each is a four-strand round braid with horsehair tassels
Photo by Mark McMillan
Belinda Gail
Photo by Donna Smith
Linda Kelly’s Best of Show bronze
Photo by Donna Smith




Lee Graves on the Poster – and the Injured List

A striking image by B.C. photographer Liz Twan was chosen for the 2010 Williams Lake Stampede poster. The photograph features two-time World Champion Steer Wrestler Lee Graves at the 2009 Williams Lake Stampede in the slack performance. Unfortunately, collecting the poster might be the only chance Williams Lake residents get to see the reigning champion. The 38-year-old bulldogger could be on the disabled list for six months after tearing his left bicep tendon during the $1.5-million Reliant Stadium rodeo at Houston this past March. Graves, who underwent surgery, may also miss the Calgary Stampede this summer. Liz Twan, a regular contributor to Canadian Cowboy Country magazine, makes her home on Alkali Lake Ranch with her husband, ranch manager Bronc Twan.



Heartland Lands 13 Nominations!

 The finalists for the 36th Annual Alberta Film & Television Awards were recently announced and CBC’s hit TV show, Heartland, landed a whopping 13 nominations. The awards – also called the Rosies – were handed out on Saturday, May 15 at the Edmonton EXPO Centre.

To be eligible you have to be an Albertan working in the film and television industry. Nominated for Best Performance by an Alberta Actor are Shaun Johnston and Nathaniel Arcand. Other nominations include Best Dramatic Series and Best Director. Earlier, head writer Heather Conkie won the Showrunner Award by the Writers Guild of Canada.

For more information on the Alberta Film & Television Awards, visit

Photo courtesy of Glenbow Archives/NA 584-1
Tom Three Persons

Three Persons Inducted into Sports Hall of Fame

 Tom Three Persons, the winner of the first Calgary Stampede saddle bronc riding competition in 1912, was among a dozen new members inducted into the Lethbridge (Alberta) Sports Hall of Fame (LSHOF) at its annual banquet on May 1. After a lengthy competitive career, Three Persons became a wealthy rancher on the Blood Tribe reservation raising Hereford cattle, thoroughbred horses and supplying bucking stock to rodeos in southern Alberta until his death in 1949. Three Persons is the third rodeo cowboy inducted into the LSHOF, joining Malcolm Jones, inducted in 2003, and Harold Mandeville, in 1990. As well, “Sundown” Hank Markus, 2004, was inducted in the Special Awards category for his rodeo and chuckwagon involvement.

Three Persons, Jones and Mandeville are also in the Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame. This great First Nations cowboy is also inducted in the Cardston Hall of Fame, the Indian Rodeo Hall of Fame and the National Cowboys of Color Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas


Northcott’s great saddle bronc, Wyatt Earp, to be inducted into Hall of Fame

Photo courtesy of Canadian Rodeo News

Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame Announces 2010 Inductees

 The Canadian Rodeo Historical Association is pleased to announce this year’s inductees to the Canadian Professional Rodeo Hall of Fame. This year, seven new inductees will join the 150-plus roster of honoured rodeo contestants, builders and animal athletes. Congratulations to Floyd Peters, Phil Doan, Gordon Doan, Everett Vold, Clayton Hines, Edith Malesh and Harvey Northcott’s Canadian champion saddle bronc, Wyatt Earp.

The 2010 Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame Inductees and Legendary Achievement Awards Ceremony will be held Oct. 16 in Calgary.



Photo courtesy of Designpics Inc./Richard Wear.

New Bill Moves to Open Horse Plants in U.S.

Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal has signed a bill into law which provides the Wyoming Board of Livestock three options to deal with abandoned, estray (animals whose ownership cannot be determined), feral or abused animals which come under their control. The first option is taking the animal to a public sale, which was the only alternative before passage of this legislation. Additional options provided are sending the animal to slaughter, or destroying the animal. The need arose because of the current lack of a market for low-end horses that are small or in poor condition. This has spurred a huge increase in abandoned and neglected horse cases across the nation. Wyoming has seen more than a tripling every year in these numbers, which has required emergency funding through the Governor since they are unable to recoup the cost of care and feeding by selling the horses.

Since the closure of the last U.S. horse slaughter plant in 2007, the only un-usable horses that have any value whatsoever are those that are big enough, or healthy enough, to be worth the transportation costs to Canada or Mexico. The glut of U.S. horses has devastated the Canadian market.

The United Organizations of the Horse is coordinating a working group that includes state agencies, private meat-processing businesses, non-profit relief organizations, Dr. Temple Grandin, veterinarians and other experts to design a system for the processing of horses as well as the efficient and practical use of valuable meat and by-products.

Their pilot Equine Assurance Program will be a model for other states to address animal-welfare concerns, and to ensure the humane handling, transportation and processing of horses. In the U.S., the closure of the horse-processing plants triggered massive economic fallout. The equine industry, once a $1.2 billion industry – supported some 460,000 direct full-time jobs working with horses, and another 1.6 million indirect jobs. It’s estimated the equine industry in the U.S. has shrunk to 50 per cent of its former sales and seen about 500,000 jobs vanish.

Photo by Kylie Bertram

Stocking the Herd

Congratulations to Dean Mackie and Kylie Bertram on the birth of their daughter, Mia Lynn Mackie, on Dec. 20. Mia weighed in at 7 lbs., 5 oz.

Dean is a Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Association (PFRA) working cowboy, Maple Creek Ranch Rodeo champion and two-time Agribition Ranch Rodeo Champion. Kylie hails from the Bertram clan, whose century ranch was featured in the Dec 2005/Jan 2006 issue of Canadian Cowboy Country.



Jerri Duce Phillips is the first cowgirl inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame

Photo courtesy of Jerri Duce Phillips

First Cowgirl Enters Alberta Sports Hall of Fame

Jerri Duce Phillips was inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame in Red Deer on May 28. When she was 9, Jerri and her sister Joy formed The Flying Duces. Their trick-riding act took them to places like England, Bermuda and Japan. Jerri won the first of her record-setting nine Canadian titles in Ladies Barrel Racing in 1964. She was the first Canadian woman to qualify for the prestigious National Finals Rodeo in 1973. In addition to winning her sixth Canadian title at the inaugural Canadian Finals Rodeo, she was crowned Miss Rodeo Canada.

Today, she and her husband Lee Phillips operate the Diamond P Ranch near Carseland. She has conducted a trick-riding school there since 2003. In 1997, she became the first female inducted into the Canadian Professional Rodeo Hall of Fame; now she’s also the first cowgirl in the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame.




2010 Rodeo Legends

The Canadian Rodeo Historical Association (CRHA) has announced the Ranchman’s Legendary Achievement Award recipients for 2010. The honoured cowboys are Brian Whitlow, D. C. Lund and Allan Currier. Each will be recognized by the CRHA at separate rodeos this summer.

Brian “Red”” Whitlow competed at his first rodeo at the age of 11 in his hometown of Cremona, Alta. His first pro rodeo was at Lacombe, Alta., in 1965. The athlete went on to win the 1967 Permit Award and even took a crack at the All-Around by adding steer wrestling to his professional events. Whitlow retired from rodeo in 1976 after a Harvey Northcott bull named Al Capone broke his leg twice in one season.

Eight-time Canadian cow milking champion Allan Currier (Czar, Alta.) was an active competitor for nearly two decades, and dominated the standings in his event for most of the 1980s. His first Canadian cow milking championship was in 1970. He also won the wild cow milking championship at the Calgary Stampede in 1970, 1982 and 1983, and won the Central Alberta Circuit championship eight times. Currier rodeoed professionally for the last time in 1987, the same year he claimed his eighth Canadian title. Following a family tradition, D. C. Lund (Taber, Alta.) began rodeoing in the 1950s. He was the 1965 Southern Alberta Rodeo Circuit steer wrestling winner, and later won the All-Around in that same circuit in 1974. In 1967, Lund was one of two cowboys selected to represent Canada in a six-month tour of Australia as guests of the Australian Roughriders Association. Upon his return, Lund finished the season in the steer wrestling in the top five in 1972, 1973 and 1975. He was the steer wrestling representative on the CRCA board 1974-1975.

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D.C. Lund Allen Currier Brian Whitlo

Come Ride the Pink Trail!

The second annual Wild Pink Yonder ride is saddling up to raise money to end breast cancer.
In 2006, trail boss Jane Hurl was diagnosed with breast cancer. This life-altering experience fired her up to support breast-cancer research. “Thanks to the grace of God and some phenomenal medical personnel, I’m still here,” says Hurl. “I’m not ‘cured’ though because (so far) there is no cure. I’d like to change that.” The 2010 ride begins Aug. 14 in Waterton and arrives in Sherwood Park, east of Edmonton, on Sept 4.

The 2010 ride begins Aug. 14 in Waterton and arrives in Sherwood Park, east of Edmonton, on Sept 4

“Riders can come for a day, a weekend or the whole 22-day ride,”” says Hurl. “We ask for a minimum pledge of $200 a day because the whole point of this is to raise funds to end breast cancer.” The riders will average 10-15 miles a day.

“We want people to enjoy the ride, not feel like they’ve entered an endurance contest,” adds Hurl.

Limited to 30 riders a day, riders and horses will be well-fed, enjoy nightly entertainment and – especially important on the prairies – a porta-potty travels with the ride.

For more information, please visit

Bill Dunn at The Alamo

Photo courtesy of Bill Dunn

Where in the World is Canadian Cowboy?
Remember the Alamo

The Battle of the Alamo (Feb. 23 – March 6, 1836) was a pivotal event in the Texas Revolution. Following a 13-day siege, Mexican troops under President General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna launched an assault on the Alamo Mission near San Antonio de Bexar (modern-day San Antonio, Texas). All but two of the Texian defenders were killed. Santa Anna’s perceived cruelty during the battle inspired many Texians – both Texas settlers and adventurers from the United States – to join the Texian Army. Buoyed by a desire for revenge, the Texians defeated the Mexican Army at the Battle of San Jacinto, on April 21, 1836, ending the revolution.

In the early part of the 20th Century, the Texas Legislature purchased the site and designated the Alamo chapel as a Texas State Shrine. The Alamo is now the most popular tourist site in Texas and attracts visitors from around the globe, including Bill Dunn from Cayley, Alta.

Miss Rodeo Canada 2010 Britteny Foster and Dana Hansen MRC Princess 2010 in Houston

Photo courtesy of Miss Rodeo Canada Committee

2010 Miss Rodeo Canada Crosses the Medicine Line

 March has been a busy month for Britteny Foster, Miss Rodeo Canada 2010, and Dana Hansen, Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2010, with multiple appearances at the Houston Stock Show and Rodeo in Texas. With more than two million people attending throughout the 20 days, the Queen and Princess rode in the grand entry every night with their friends from the Calgary Stampede. Their sponsors, Patterson-UTI Drilling, took them for a tour of the beautiful city of Houston. Once back home in Canada, the ladies attended the Alberta Equestrian Federation information conference and then the Little Bits Therapeutic Riding Association’s first annual breakfast fundraiser. They were also invited to the CAN-AM at Spruce Meadows by their generous saddle sponsors, Cavalier. All this, plus they proudly carried the Canadian and Alberta flags at the College Rodeo Finals in Edmonton. To follow their travels, check their upcoming events and find out more about becoming a sponsor, visit