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The BC Cowboy Heritage Society
Official Newsletter

The Cowboy Times
2017 Vol #4 - December

Issued quarterly;
February, May, September, and December
To see the past issues click on the Vol   #72 or Vol   #73


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From the Editors
From the President
Thursday night Dinner Dance
The 2018 Kamloops Cowboy Festival
2018 Cowboy Church
2018 BC Cowboy Hall of Fame

2018 Alberta Bus Packages
2018 Joe Marten Award
100 Mile Cowboy Concert
Our Five Student Scholarships
Cowboy Book to Benefit Fire Victims
Spirit of the West Cruise


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From the Editors

Kathy and Mark McMillan

Kathy and Mark McMillan

The 2018 Kamloops Cowboy Festival is just around the corner and this issue of the Cowboy Times will basically give you the run down on whats in store for the 22nd Annual Festival ... tickets are already selling fast and it looks to be another awesome year at the Coast Hotel and Convention Centre.

You'll find articles on most every aspect of the Festival ... workshops, entertainers, bus packages, and one of the most talked about segments of the Festival ... Cowboy Church!

We also have the current information on the Joe Marten Award recipient and the 2018 BC Cowboy Hall of Fame inductees.

Kathy & Mark McMillan, Editors,   msprings@bcinternet.net


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From the President

Mark McMillan

December 2017, Pres report by Mark McMillan

The last president report of the year - hard to believe another year has gone by! Hard to believe that another Kamloops Cowboy Festival is just around the corner too!!

We've been busy getting things put in place for the 100 Mile House Cowboy Concert and have just had the two annual meetings in Williams Lake ... the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame selection committee meeting and the picking of the Joe Marten Award for 2018. A month and a half from now and we'll be getting our judges to pick the winning Student Scholarships for the year, too!

All in all 2017 has been a very trying, but yet very good year! We wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and all the best in 2108.

Mark McMillan, President, BCCHS,   cowboys@bcchs.com


The BC Cowboy Heritage Society
Box 137, Kamloops, BC, Canada, V2C 5K3
Phone:1-888-763-2221
Email: cowboys@bcchs.com

Our next general meeting, once again in Kamloops, has been slated for December 10th.

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society would like to thank you for your support over the past year. We hope you will continue supporting the society by renewing your membership annually. Membership information, and a membership form, can be found on our web site at: www.bcchs.com/membership.html

BCCHS Memberships
If you're not a member but are interested in what we do to preserve cowboy heritage in BC, then you should think about joining. There are no commitments whatsoever and your $20 membership ($30 for a family and $100 for corporate) would be greatly appreciated. Membership dollars go towards the society's administrative costs.


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The Horse Barn

The Horse Barn's web site is: www.horsebarncanada.com.


The Horse Barn!

We are so glad to have the Horse Barn as a major sponsor of the Kamloops Cowboy Festival.

The Horse Barn is now open on Sunday, too!

Festival Tickets are now available
at the Horse Barn!


The Horse Barn - Rafter HB!

The Horse Barn
517 Mt Paul Way
Kamloops, BC, V2H 1A9


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A Sneak Peek at a Couple of Things For the 2018 Festival

You'll fnd a couple of articles lower in this newsletter that focus on individual aspects of the Festival including; Cowboy Church,   Thursday Night's Dinner Dance,   and the two 2018 Bus Tours.

Right now lets start out with what we consider to be a spectacular lineup of entertainers!!

  • Abe Zacharias
  • Alan Moberg
  • Ben Crane
  • Bj Smith
  • Brian Salmon
  • Bryn Theissen
  • Bud Webb
  • Butch Falk

  • Carol Heuchan
  • Chris Isaacs
  • Doc Mehl
  • Doris Daley
  • Ed Peekeekoot
  • Gary Prescott
  • Gary Fjellgaard
  • Gordie West

  • Hugh McLennan
  • Jason Ruscheinsky
  • Jim McLennan
  • Mag Mawhinney
  • Mike Dygert
  • Notable Exceptions
  • Ryan Fritz
  • Tom Cole

I truely think this list of performers will make the 22nd annual Festival one of the best yet. A couple of new faces and a lot of past year's favourites!! Jason Ruscheinsky was the winner of the 2016 Rising Star Showcase but couldn't make it to the 2017 Festival because of school commitments. This year we're happy to say he's finding time to join us!!

Gary Prescott hasn't been for a few years, and although his wife Jean couldn't make it this year, Gary has agreed to come up from Texas!! Don't forget your passport Gary :-). (some of you will remember last time Gary was here he had to make a return trip home to get his passport before they allowed him into Canada - and he still made the Friday evening show!!).

The best news is that ticket prices are all remaining the same and the menus for the Dinner Theatre will remain virtually the same. Tickets went on sale on November 1st and are selling very well. If you're wanting to take in a Dinner Theatre Show don't delay, they're selling fast.


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Thursday Night "Welcome to Cowboy Festival" Dinner Dance!

Featuring Tom Cole and Band

Band sponsored by Dougie Haughton, aka John Deer Doug

The Kamloops Cowboy Festival will host its own dinner dance this year featuring Tom Cole and Ronny's Ribs & BBQ! It will be held in the Banquet Room at Flavours of India, at 610 Columbia Street (which used to be Chapters Viewpoint right beside the Best Western).

Cocktails @ 6:00 pm. Dinner @ 6:45. Dance @ 8:00.

The Dinner Menu
Texas Style BBQ Brisket, Hickory Smoked (about 14 hours)
low & slow for that Authentic Old West Flavour.

Served with,
Potato Salad & Sweet Pickle
Lone Star Slaw
Cowboy Baked Beans
South West Salad
Sweet Corn Bread Muffins
Freshly Made Dessert
All for $39.99, including taxes and gratuity.
Tickets are available at the Horse Barn in Kamloops or with your Festival tickets at: 1-888-763-2221.

Thursday Night Kickoff Dinner Dance will feature Tom Cole
Tom Cole Rhythm and Vocals
Mike Dygert on Bass
Jim McLennan on Lead Guitar
with others to possibly join in!

Band sponsored by
Doug Haughton

Food by Ronny's Ribs & BBQ


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Alberta Bus Tours Heading to Kamloops

Good News For Albertans!!
Frontier Bus Lines Coach / bus to the Kamloops Cowboy Festival

Alberta Bus Tour to the 2018 Kamloops Cowboy Festival

Enjoy the Kamloops Cowboy Festival without worrying about mountain travel ...

Our official carry is Frontier Bus Lines and joining them this year will be Promotional Tours.

Frontier Bus Lines will make their third annual tour to the Cowboy Festival with a departure on March 15th, 2018 from Central Alberta. The tour will include deluxe motor coach transportation with an experienced tour guide, Tickets for the Dinner Dance Thursday evening, 4 nights at the Coast Hotel (host hotel for Festival), daily breakfast, a weekend pass to Cowboy Festival and all three dinner theater shows. They will depart Red Deer at 7:00AM on the 15th. If you book before December 31st you'll save $50.00!! Please check their website for details at: www.frontierbuslines.com or contact them toll free at: 1-888-LET-S-BUS (538-7287). Click here for their flyer

Promotion Tours will depart Edmonton on the 15th bringing with them all the northern folks that don't want to mess with driving! They'll be picking folks up in Leduc, Sherwood Park, St Albert, Spruce Grove Edson, and Hinton. Their tour includes 4 night accommodation at the Coast Hotel, breakfast daily, all three dinner theatre shows, and the option to purchase the Thursday evening dinner dance tickets. You can reach them at www.promotiontours.ca or Toll free at: 1-866-460-0777.

The evening jam session at Meadow Springs Ranch!


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The BCCHS & Mike Puhallo Memorial Student Scholarships

Annually we run a competition for up to five scholarships of $500.00 each!

Three of these scholarships are funded by the BCCHS and are for graduating seniors or college students resident in BC, who are enrolled in any post secondary institution, or will be so, within the year of the competition. The three categories are; an essay or short story; a piece of original art work; or Cowboy Craftsmanship (leather work etc.)

The other two are Mike Puhallo Memorial Scholarships funded by both BCCHS and Canadian Cowboy Country magazine. These two are for Cowboy Poetry and students anywhere in Canada or the US who are enrolled in any post secondary institution, or will be so, within the year of the competition could be eligible.

Our objectives in presenting these scholarships are twofold: To promote awareness of our ranching and cowboy heritage and current contributions; and to provide support in post secondary education to students who demonstrate that knowledge.

To compete for a scholarship read the rules, print the application form, fill it out and sign it, then mail or scan and email it with your material. Entry deadline is Dec 31st. All the information is available on our web site www.bcchs.com on the "Scholarship" page.


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Good News Re: Cowboy Church!

We've had lots of people asking about Cowboy Church and lots of people making suggestions as to where to hold Cowboy Church. We listened to all the comments (most of which came in within about a half hour of church ending last March) and decided right away to have our own Cowboy Church in 2018 ... so not to worry, Cowboy Church will be in the Convention Centre the same as the rest of the Festival. It'll be in the Ball Room, Bryn Theissen will officiate, and your favourite performers from the weekend will be there! We will not be charging admission at the door until after church ... although we will ask at the door if you want to go to the Festival in the afternoon, giving you the option to pay for the whole day.

Bryn Theissen
Bryn Theissen will officiate at the 2018 Cowboy Church
click to enlarge


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The Cowboy in ME ... by Rob Langford

Author donates to the Wildfire Fund at the Williams Lake and District Credit Unions

In the last issue we had an article on Rob Langford's book and the fact that the proceeds would go to Wildfire Fund ... well shortly after that issue was published Rob informed me that he had made a $3,000.00 cash donation bringing the total to $3,500.00 !! A huge thanks Rob!!

Now ... I said that the book looks impressive and the story sounded great, so far, but I hadn't read much at that point in time. Well since then I have finished the book and thought it was great. Here's a few reviews that have been written about "The Cowboy in Me". I won't give their names, but only their initials:

click to enlarge
The Cowboy in Me ... by Rob Langford

BRN - Loved this book and it made it even better knowing about the help going to the wild fire fund.

JD - Thank you Robin not only for your generosity but for writing such a terrific book!

KB - Should be available across Canada!

BG - I read it in two days, I couldn't put it down it was so interesting!

SW - I loved The Cowboy in Me and was sad to put it down. What a great story, Rob has lived an inspiring life and tells us about it in an honest, heartfelt way. My only complaint was that the book ended too soon. 5 stars.

SS - This book is a great read, a real insider view of a real life cowboys life. The ups and downs, hard work and rewards of a cowboys life. This cowboys love and support of fellow cowboys, ranchers and family. Thoroughly enjoyed this read and highly recommend it to anyone interested in the adventures of a young man in the world of horses, cattle and wild life of the open spaces. 5 stars

AS - I read the book. It was awesome. I couldn't put it down, finished it at 2:30 am. I remember Pelican Lake, Pan Meadow and WB Ranch and your place in Shellbrook, so I was able to visualize some of the places you wrote about. I always thought the history of your life would make a good read. You proved it right. Well done.

AR - Good book, hard to put down.

KJ - Finished the book, enjoyed it immensely.

JK - Great book

SO - This is a real great read

CB - Just for those who are waiting for this book. I just finished mine and it is a most interesting read and makes me really proud to be connected to this family.

Check out the last Newsletter for more on this great book.


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The BC Cowboy Hall of Fame

Six inductees have been picked for 2018 inductions

The BC Cowboy Hall of Fame selection committee met on Saturday, November 18th to decide on who would be inducted in 2018. A couple of past nominations were brought back to the table and a few new nominations were looked at ... the names were all of some very deserving cowboys.

So for the first induction ceremony, which will take place at the Kamloops Cowboy Festival on Friday evening March 16th, two cowboys will enter the Hall of Fame. Lois Tucker-Daley, from the Pavilion area, will be inducted as a "Working Cowboy" and Ken Fawcett, from Vanderhoof, as a "Ranching Pioneer".

The second ceremony will be held at the Williams Lake Indoor Rodeo on Sunday April 22nd at 1:00 PM. Here four more cowboy will be inducted. David Maurice from Riske Creek, as a "Working Cowboy", Charlie Brous, from Soda Creek, for "Competitive Achievements", Pat and Mike Jasper as "Working Cowboys", and the Joe Schuk Family as a "Family".

All very deserving inductees - congratulations to them!! We will have a photo and a bio of each of them on the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame page of this web site in the near future.


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The Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin

presents the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame

Museum Logo

The Museum is located in Williams Lake, BC. For information on the Museum, and what it displays inside, check out their web site at: www.cowboy-museum.com


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The Joe Marten Memorial Award
For the Preservation of Cowboy Heriatge in BC

The 2018 recipient has been picked

Williams Lake saddle maker Mark Denny has been picked as the recipient for the 2018 Joe Marten Award. Mark has been making saddles and doing leather work for a decades now. You can find his saddles under many a working cowboy in the Cariboo Chilcotin and throughout BC for that matter ... inf act you can find his saddles in a few different countries around the world.

Mark's business, Cariboo Saddlery, was started by his father, Tom, in 1977. Tom was a working cowboy in the area but was also known for leather work and saddle repairs. Mark started learning leather work at a young age and has carried on ever since. He decided to make it a career after graduating in 1977 and went to Calgary to learn saddle making in 1978.

I'm sure the number of saddles Mark has produced over the years is pushing the 1000 mark, and as we speak he is now putting out number 15 for the year.

Mark has always been community minded, too, helping out as a volunteer and a director of the Williams Lake Stampede over the years as well as a member and past president of the Kiwanis Club. He won't be working out of the store front forever, but he says he'll be making saddles, he hopes, for a long time to come! We hope so too!! As a side note, Mark is the only vendor that can say he has never missed having his booth in the Trade Show at the Kamloops Cowboy Festival ... he was there in 1997 and has been at all 22 Festivals!

Congratulations Mark and we'll see you at the Award Presentation Ceremony at the Kamloops Cowboy Festival during the 7:00 PM evening main feature show in the Ball Room, at the Coast Hotel and Convention Centre on Saturday, March 17th.

click to enlarge
Williams Lake saddle maker Mark Denny Mark Denny at the 1st Kamloops
Cowboy Festival in 1997


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The 18th Annual 100 Mile House Cowboy Concert

This year, as always, the 100 Mile House Cowboy Concert will be on the second Saturday in February ... that'll be February 10th, 2018.

We are already getting sponsors saying they want to sponsor the event again this year and although tickets won't go on sale until December 1st, we're already figuring that the concert will once again be a sellout.

100 Mile Cowboy Concert 2011
photo by Jerry Stainer
The RCMP Colour Guard and the Eclectica Choir
Ed Peekeekoot hamming it up after playing Dueling Banjos

If you've ever seen Ed Peekeekoot perform we know you'll want tickets! If you haven't seen him perform, then no matter what you like in the way of music, you should get a ticket ... he does put on an amazing show (ask anyone who has seen him)!!

Sharing the stage with Ed will be Bj Smith, a humorous cowboy poet that will make the trip over the mountains from Alberta. Bj is a retired Mountie, a packer, horse trainer, ski patroller, and back country guide, and he draws upon his experience to feed his appetite for stories and poems. He was here in 2009 and everyone loved him!

We'll have one other musician joining these two, but at this point in time we're still waiting confirmation ... you can bet though, whoever we get will also be a crowd favourite!


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Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association - ACPA

Check it out at: www.albertacowboypoetry.com. If you're looking for a performer for an event, or if you are a performer looking to get booked for an event, then you'll find how on their web site. If it's a CD or book you need you'll find tons of them there, too! That's www.albertacowboypoetry.com.


Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association - ACPA

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The 17th Annual Spirit of the West Cruise!

will be in September, 2018 ... and definitely a bucket list trip!

Canada - New England ... Quebec City to New York!!

An 11 day adventure (with an optional 2 night New York post package) with Billie and Hugh and other passengers that have said that this cruise is on the top of their bucket list. This time on Royal Caribbean's "Adventure of the Sea"! An all new cruise for them where they'll see all new ports of call.

Please Note:

Royal Caribbean is saying that this cruise is sold out which means the only cabins available are the ones we have set aside, and Royal Caribbean is pulling them back. This means the price, if anything is even available, could be much higher!! If you are even thinking about joining us you should probably book soon, or at least contact Karen and Jim at Cruise Vacations: 1-800-530-0131. There are over 120 people booked to join our group already!!

click to enlarge
Quebec City to New York

Quebec City to New York

See www.Hugh-McLennan.com or call Cruise Vacations
1-800-530-0131
Download the Cruise Brochure

    Here's the places you'll see:

  • Quebec City
  • Fairmont Chateau Frontenac
  • Charlottetown, PEI
  • Sydney, Nova Scotia
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • Saint John, NB (Bay of Fundy)
  • Bar Harbor, Maine
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Portland, Maine
  • Cape Liberty, New Jersey

Hopefully the Fall colours will be plentiful but either way we know this will be an awesome cruise! It's with the Spirit of the West ... they're always awesome!

Here is a photo of the 2017 Spirit of the West group

The 2017 Spirit of the West Cruise is off to Alaska

click to enlarge


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Home of the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame!

Museum Logo

BC Cowboy, Ranching, and Rodeo Museum The Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin is located in Williams Lake, BC and is the Home of the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame. It is located at the corner of 4th Avenue and Borland Street. Phone 250-392-7404 Email: mccwl@uniserve.com

We highly recommend a visit to the
Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin in Williams Lake!
Check out their web site - BC Cowboy, Ranching, and Rodeo Museum


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