The BC Cowboy Heritage Society Newsletter Logo

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society
Official Newsletter

The Cowboy Times
2016 Vol #3 - September

Issued quarterly;
February, May, September, and December
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About Us


Hall of Fame

Heritage Award 



Trade Show

Western Art Show

Rising Stars



From the Editors
From the President
2017 Cowboy Festival
2017 Festival Entertainers
BC Cowboy Hall of Fame

The Festival Art & Trade Shows
The 90th Birthday Party
Spirit of the West Cruise
The Wardens BC Fall Tour
The 100 Mile House Cowboy Concert

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From the Editors

Kathy and Mark McMillan

Kathy and Mark McMillan

You'll find some big news in this issue. News that I'm sure folks are waiting to hear ... like who will be performing at the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival. It looks like it'll be another great line-up!!

We've left the article about the 2017 Festival, and the changes in store, from the last issue for those that didn't get a chance to see it. It sounds like big changes but really we don't think there'll be much difference ... except that the shuttle busses will like the idea of not having to go back and forth across the road to the church all day every day.

To be able to celebrate a 90th birthday, to me, is quite a feat. To have five people all celebrating the same milestone birthday in the same room, at the same time, is awesome, and amazing! In this issue there's an article on Red Allison's birthday party in Clinton this past summer.

We hope you had a great summer and enjoy fall to the fullest ... before the snow flies :-).

Kathy & Mark McMillan, Editors,

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From the President

Mark McMillan

September 2016, Pres report by Mark McMillan

We don't have any meetings through the summer months, and things like trade show booths and art show entries for the Festival don't happen until the fall, so there's not a whole lot of news on the Festival yet. The entertainers have all been tentatively booked though and the lineup looks great.

Now is the time to start thinking about who you'd like to see in the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame. Check out the Hall of Fame page on our website - anyone can submit a nomination and there's a ton of eligible cowboys out there that need to be nominated. The deadline for nominations is November 1st.

The Joe Marten Award for the Preservation of Cowboy Heritage in BC will again be presented at the Kamloops Cowboy Festival and we're looking for nominations for this award, too. It also has a deadline for nominations of November 1st.

Mark McMillan, President, BCCHS,

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society
Box 137, Kamloops, BC, Canada, V2C 5K3

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 for the year 2016. Membership information, and a membership form, can be found on our web site at:

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:

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!

The Horse Barn - Rafter HB!

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

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The 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival Entertainers lineup.

There is some amazing talent lined up for 2017. Mostly repeats ... favorites from over the years! Some of them haven't been here for a lot of years, some were here not long ago, a few were here last year, and we have at least one first timer!

It was five Festivals ago (although its seems like just two) that our cute little yodelling cowgirl from Ontario was here. Naomi Bristow was, I believe, 14 years old at the time which means she'll be 18 this year. We sure look forward to her return!

A few names from the past few years are; Wesley Hardisty (fiddle player), Trinity Seeley, The Hanson Family, Ed Brown, Ed Wahl, Matt Johnston, Jess Lee, Ben Crane, Dave Longworth, and of course Hugh McLennan and Frank Gleeson. Our two Spirit of the West Rising Star Show Case winners from last year; Jason Ruscheinsky and Emily Ireland will join them.

A couple of names from way back when, that will return this year, are Cowboy Poet Jay Snider and Cowboy Singer Kevin Davis! The last time they appeared in Kamloops, not that we haven't wanted them since, was 2008 - it'll be great to hear them again. Joining them from the past will be Cowgirl Poets Phyllis Rathwell, who we haven't seen since 2008 and Kathy Moss who we haven't seen since 2010.

Naomi Bristow will be at the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival
Naomi Bristow

The Wardens will be at the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival
The Wardens

We are happy to announce, and excited to know, that the Alberta based band The Wardens will be part of the lineup at the 2017 Festival. These three guys have spent their lives in the wilderness of Canada's National Parks packing, protecting wildlife, saving lost hikers, and doing whatever else park rangers do. Once they found out that the three of them were all musicians they formed a band called The Wardens and now tell their tales and memories in song. Scott Ward, Bradley Bischoff and Ray Schmidt make up the band. You can read more about them, and see where to see and hear them, in the article below about their BC fall tour.

The dinner theatre shows are always popular and will remain the same as always - three shows; Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday night. Day time entertainment and the Thursday evening get aquainted party will take place as always in the same theatre. The menues for the Dinner Theatre shows are slightly different this year but looks awesome!! See the menu here.

Trinity Seely will be at the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival
Trinity Seely

The difference this year is that we have added a second venue in the Convention Centre - a 260 seat theatre in a separate room with a big 24 foot wide stage. This theatre will take the place of the church for all shows except Cowboy Church Sunday morning. So when you look at the program it'll look the same except at the top of the schedule, where it lists the venue, it'll say "Theatre" on one side and "Ball Room" (instead of church) on the other side.

Here's a photo of three entertainers that will return this year:

Kevin Davis will return for the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival

Kathy Moss will return for the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival

Jay Snider will return for the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival

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What's in Store for the 2017 Kamloops Cowboy Festival?

We do have a few changes in store for 2017 but I'm looking forward to them! Although it sounds like we're downsizing, I think it'll be better than ever. By cutting back in some spots we will have more time to concentrate on other spots. I can see the quality of the Festival actually increasing ... although that could be hard to accomplish when we look over past years.

The main changes, as we see them right now, and are all subject to change, are as follows:

Venue: We will use only one venue in 2017. By not using the church we can cut our workload way down. The convention centre will be laid out a little differently allowing us an extra 260 seat theatre in the Ball Room. The church was only using about 1/3 of its capacity and this extra theatre will absorb most of these numbers. We will not be adding the extra chairs in the theatre that we did last year.

Trade Show: The floor space of the trade show will decrease by about half to make room for the other theatre (the Ball Room has a centre wall that slides into place). The number of booths will therefore decrease, although by less than half. In 2016 there were 46 booths and 6 tables in the hall way. For 2017 we are figuring on 29 booths and 12 tables in the hall. Because of this we should be able to keep a high quality of products offered in the trade show but we will have to increase our booth rental rates a little.

Art Show: The art show will be in the same location but will be sitting on half of the floor space. That was a big room for the amount of art displayed and we feel it would look better, and have the same high quality art, if it was rearranged in a smaller area.

Workshops: The workshops will be held in the room behind the art show - the room that was the other half of the art show. This should be a great area to host all of the workshops and seminars.

Ticket Prices: Considering the increase in our rental costs, our tickets prices will not increase by much. Basically we are increasing all rates by $5.00. The cost of the dinners in the dinner theatre will now be $35. Weekend passes will be $80, Feature passes $40, and Day time admission $25.

Tentative 2017 Festival Floor Plan
Tentative 2017 Festival Floor Plan
click to enlarge

One thing that I'm proud of is the fact that we have stuck to our roots over the past 20 years, and are still here to talk about it. In a recent Spirit of the West Radio Show, Hugh interviewed Ryan Fritz, and asked him what he liked about the Elko Gathering. Ryan's answer was, "They're really sticking to their traditional part of ranching and cowboy in their material - both poets and musicians." I have had the same comments from members of our audience and although it would be easy to go country and loose our focus, I think we've done the right thing - like I said, we're still here, and, we still have the numbers to say we're one of the biggest and best.

I think the Rising Star Show Case over the years has helped with this as I've seen numerous contestants enter, do poorly the first year and then come back and ace it the second year - mostly because they figured out the "real" cowboy ways - both in material and in appearance. Having said that, unfortunately that is one place we're going to cut back, at least for next year - no Rising Star Show Case for 2017.

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The BC Cowboy Hall of Fame
Nomination Deadline Fast Approaching!

Anyone can nominate someone that they think is a deserving cowboy. Basically nominees must have made the majority of their living as a working cowboy and it had to be in BC. The nominator must fill out the nomination form and submit it with a text document containing the facts about the nominee. This document must convince the committee that the said cowboy is eligible. All the information can be found on our web site on the Hall of Fame page. Nominations are sent to the Museum of the Cariboo Chilcotin in Williams Lake.

There will be two ceremonies again this year to recognize the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame inductees. One will be at the Kamloops Cowboy Festival on Friday, March 17th and the other, hopefully, at the Williams Lake Indoor Rodeo on Sunday, April 16th.

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The Kamloops Cowboy Festival
Art of the West Show and Sale &
Festival Trade Show.

The 2017 Festival is fast approaching and the space available for both the Art Show and the Trade Show is limited ... in fact both areas will be considerably smaller in 2017, therefore it's important for exhibitors to get their applications in early. Floor space will be approximately half the size this year so exhibitor space will be at a premium!

The Trade Show already has vendors wanting booth space for the 2017 Festival and although we will try and look after past exhibitors first we only hold their booth the beginning of December. After that it's first come first serve so if you're an exhibitor looking for booth space get your applications in early. Applications and information can be found on the website Trade Show page.

Every year the Kamloops Cowboy Festival is host to the Canadian Cowboy Country magazine sponsored Art of the West Show and Sale, a juried western art show. Artists from all over North America can submit a sample of their work to a committee where it is reviewed and either rejected or accepted for display and judging at the art show during the Festival. Applications for the Art Show are due in January and can be found, along with all the rules, on the website Art Show page.

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A Birthday Party for Five People Hitting 90 This Year!

Plus Five Others Over 90 Joined the Celbration!

It was 2014 when Red Allison was talking to Allan Bolster and Allan told him he had the idea to have an August birthday party for their friend Ernie Dobson. Ernie had been diagnosed with cancer and Allan said why wait, let's have a party now while Ernie is still alive and can be there.

Earlier this year Red remembered that idea and because he was turning 90 in June he thought he should host a birthday party ... for himself and 4 others that would all turn 90 this year. The idea being, that they were still here and could all still enjoy a good time. So Red rented the Clinton Community Hall, ordered enough food trays for a large buffet, enlisted the help of friends and family to help arrange a liquor licence, decorate the hall, and on Saturday, June 25th, it all came together.

Red Allison hosted a party for five that turn 90 this year!
Red Allison

Doug White piped the head table in.
Doug White

Word of mouth and the moccasin telegraph were the means of invitation and in the end folks figured that between two and three hundred people dropped by that afternoon to celebrate with the five locals that did, or would, turn 90 in 2016.

At another birthday party earlier this year (Eric Reay's 80th) Red spoke with long time friend, and fellow BC Cowboy Hall of Fame inductee, Doug White (who plays the bagpipes) and asked Doug if he would pipe in the head table guests at his birthday party. Doug said, yes, of course and started the procession in the foyer and through the hall to the head table - surrounded by a full hall of family and friends.

There were five people at the head table that all turned 90 this year. Anyone in the cattle industry knows, or knows of, Red Allison (June 27th, 1926). Red was a rancher and cowboy all of his life and a cattle buyer for many years. He was inducted into the BC Cowboy

Hall of Fame in 2003. Red was joined at the head table by Pat Baker (December 18th, 1926) who also ranched in Clinton for many years with her husband Charlie. They were inducted into the BC Cowboy Hall of Fame as a couple the year before Red. Pat West (November 14th, 1926) also ranched in the area, with her husband Lloyd, running cow calf for years, and then yearlings. Bruce Drewry (June 24th, 1926) cowboyed for Allan and Ginger Glen, as well as other local ranchers, and was always a huge supporter and helping hand at the annual Clinton Rodeo. Earl Cahill (November 24th, 1926) rounded out the

(L to R) Earl Cahill, Pat Baker, Red Allison, Pat West and Bruce Drewry.
(L to R) Earl Cahill, Pat Baker, Red Allison, Pat West and Bruce Drewry

head table. Earl worked for fisheries for years, spending a lot time in Farewell Canyon where he took some terrific photos of some of the cattle drives that crossed the bridge at the Chilcotin River. I actually have a photo of Earl cutting hay with a team here at our place in the 1940s.

As well as these five that turned 90 this year there were five others that were over 90 (plus two others who weren't able to make it; Joyce Coldwell and Betty Hook). Ginger Glen's dad Ray Swan, Alice Crosson, Willie Crosina (Willie's Western Wear in Williams Lake), Rudy Johnson (The Rudy Johnson Bridge in Williams Lake) and Wayne Everett (ran the Perry Ranch for the Gang Ranch for many years).

To be able to celebrate these milestone birthdays, to me, is quite a feat. To have five people all celebrating the same milestone birthday in the same room at the same time is awesome, and amazing! To have five others that are all older join them is incredible! Red Allison - hats off to you for initiating this great party and we wish you many more!!

All those that were over 90 were at the head table.
As well as these five that turned 90 this year there were five others that were over 90

Red supplied an awesome and plentiful buffet.
Red supplied an awesome and plentiful buffet.

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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:

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The 17th Annual 100 Mile House Cowboy Concert

Saturday February 11th, 2017

Unfortunately we can't release the entertainers' names yet, but we can say it should be one of the best ever!! The performers that we have tentatively lined up are definitely favorites! In the next issue of this newsletter, November/December we will let you know as I'm sure lots of you are waiting to hear ... and to buy those Christmas stocking stuffer tickets :-). Stay tuned!!

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Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association - ACPA

Check it out at: 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

Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association - ACPA

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The 16th Annual Spirit of the West Cruise!

Warning: at the time of this newsletter there were already around 150 folks booked on this cruise and it may be sold out. Don't delay, just in case, book now to get your name on a waiting list. Deposits are refundable till March 21st, 2017.

click to enlarge
The 2017 Spirit of the West Cruise is off to Alaska

The 2017 Spirit of the West
Cruise is off to Alaska

See or call Cruise Vacations
Download the Cruise Brochure

That's right - North To Alaska is the 2017 destination. The Holland America's ship "ms Noordam" will depart Vancouver on June 18th, 2017, with Billie and Hugh McLennan and the Spirit of the West group! The cruise will sail over a seven day period taking in; The Inside Passage, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, and Steward (Anchorage).

Following the cruise the Spirit of the West group will enjoy some of Alaska's most spectacular scenery en route to Denali National Park with it's unforgettable Tundra Wilderness, and the very best chance of seeing both Mount McKinley itself and Denali's iconic wildlife. Transportation to Denali National Park will be on deluxe motor coach and the return trip to Anchorage will be on the luxurious domed cars of the McKinley Explorer.

There's an option available, too, if you're coming from Alberta ... you could take the Rocky Mountaineer Rail Package.

Here is a photo of the 2016 Spirit of the West group

The 2017 Spirit of the West Cruise is off to Alaska

click to enlarge

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Three Park Wardens From the Canadian Rockies
Are Headed Out To Tour BC This Fall

November 12th to 20th, 2016

click to enlarge
The Wardens head to BC on tour

Yes, they are park wardens but in realizing they could all play and sing they decided to form a band and it's great. "The Wardens" will be one of the feature acts at the next Kamloops Cowboy Festival (March 16th to 19th, 2017) and they are gearing up by doing a BC tour this fall. November 13th will see them in the Dusty Rose Pub in 70 Mile and if you want to join us that evening give Mark a call: 250-456-2425. They are in Lillooet on the 12th, 108 on the 15th, Quesnel on the 16th, Smithers on the 17th, Burns Lake on the 18th, Kitimat the 19th and Terrace on the 20th.

Here's a little about the three guys:
(L to R) Ray Schmidt, Bradley Bischoff and Scott Ward

click to enlarge
The Wardens head to BC on tour

Ray Schmidt sings harmony and plays the big doghouse bass. Ray started working in the parks 2001 for the Banff, Yoho and Kootenay Warden Service. Ray and Scott founded "The Wardens" in 2009 during the national park warden centennial.

Scott Ward plays a finger style guitar and sings lead vocals. In 1969 Scott started a career as a park warden in Banff National Park. In 1983 he became a search and rescue dog handler and for the

next 17 years he responded to avalanches, missing persons, and poaching cases. In 2000 he returned to the backcountry patrols. One year after his retirement in 2005 he was awarded the Governor General's Award for Exemplary Service as a peace officer.

Bradley Bischoff sings lead vocals and plays rhythm guitar. He started his horseback warden career in Jasper National Park in 1981 and for the next 30 years he has worked in parks from Nunavut to Newfoundland to the Pacific Ocean. He's a farrier, a teacher and a ranch manager so needless to say he has tons of material and it's all reflected in song.

click to enlarge
The Wardens head to BC on tour

We look forward to hearing The Wardens both in BC during their tour and at the Kamloops Festival in March! See their web site & find their contact info at

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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. Its located at the corner of 4th Avenue and Borland Street. Phone 250-392-7404 Email:

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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