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Five Fun Facts About Buffalo Bill’s...

October 21st, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Comments(1)

Sure, people come to Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country for the park, rodeo, Western museums and hot cowboy musicians, but it’s the fun facts they learn about along the way that get them talking.

The other day I was sitting on the patio at one of my favorite coffee shops and pretending to read the latest issue of Country Music News. What I was really doing was eavesdropping on a young family from Upstate New York.

Mom and Dad were talking about the Remingtons they saw at the Whitney Western Art Museum, but when they asked their kids what they liked about the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, they received some surprising answers.

“I liked the chuck wagon out front where the guy was cooking beans and making coffee over the fire,” said the girl who looked like she was about 10 years old.

“I liked the ‘duck gun’ in the Cody Firearms Museum that looks like you could shoot four bad guys at the same time,” said the girl’s little brother.

I was happy the parents did not overreact and lecture their kids about them being too young for coffee, so I discreetly started chatting them up about some of the area’s lesser-known facts.

Here Read More

Following in Butch Cassidy’s Footsteps...

October 5th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

The other night when I was channel surfing I came across one of my all-time favorite movies – “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.” I watched the entire movie, and I was reminded of how much I love this flick, especially because it has so many real-life connections to Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country.

The Hole in the Wall cabin at Old Trail Town, Cody.

Of course I’m far too young to remember when this classic movie first came out. I’ll save you the Google search. It was 1969. But my parents were big fans, and whenever it was on TV my family would try to watch the movie. I have a great, comforting memory of curling up with my parents on our red fake-fur couch, sipping Coca-Cola and being allowed to stay up past my bedtime on a school night to watch the movie. Back then, I recall being in love with Robert Redford (let’s be honest…who wasn’t?). And I was struck by the huge volume of mascara the ladies in the Old West must have had to wear, as evidenced by Katharine Ross’s thick, globby eyelashes. Funny, the things you remember as a kid.

Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country has at least Read More

Feeding my truffle habit and living...

September 22nd, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

The other day, I had a hankering for chocolate. And I’m not talking about a Hershey’s kind of hankering. I wanted the real deal; chocolate that is just as authentic as Yellowstone Country.

So I got into my car and headed 32 miles south to the town of Meeteetse, a small town on the Greybull River that is so classic I always half expect John Wayne to swagger down its wooden boardwalks. With a name like Meeteetse, there’d better be a good story behind the name, right? In fact, there are two (but in my opinion, only one of them is good). One version is that it is an American Indian phrase for “meeting place.” That sounds right. Another explanation is that the word translated into English means “measured distance near and far,” but to this day no one has been able to shed light on how that relates to the town. As I used to say in my eye-rolling 14-year-old teenager days…”boooring.”

A welcome site when arriving in Meeteetse, Wyoming.

But back to chocolate. The town of Meeteetse is known for many things – its nearby ghost towns, home-base for notorious outlaws like Butch Cassidy and an array of colorful characters Read More

Cody Museums Rock the True West

August 3rd, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

It feels good to be a winner, and a lot of people involved with our very own Buffalo Bill Center of the West are feeling purty goshdern good today. (Read on to see why I’m suddenly reverting to my cowgirl vernacular.)

America’s frontier history comes to life in True West, the world’s oldest, continuously published Western Americana magazine.

Buffalo Bill Center of the West was just named the Top Western Museum for 2015 by True West magazine, which as many of you know is a top-notch magazine covering the authentic West. I got a sneak peek at the upcoming September issue of the magazine, which highlights the Buffalo Bill Museum’s “Man of the West, Man of the World: The Life and Legacy of William F. Buffalo Bill.’”

Yes, yes, I know. As my mama always said, “Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back,” but I’m so tickled that the Center of the West topped the list that I couldn’t keep it to myself. I hope the fine writers at True West magazine won’t be too ticked at me, and if all of you buy a copy of the magazine, maybe they won’t be. Look for Read More

Our Kind of Competition

July 27th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Here in Cody – for that matter, here in Wyoming – we have a healthy respect for guns, gun safety and firearms in general.

Hunting has been a way of life for most people here, and for many of our ancestors it was essential for survival. When I grew up all of my friends and I received “the talk” from our parents about what to do if we came across a gun (don’t touch it, tell an adult immediately) and were instructed on proper handling and shooting once we were old enough.

Guns aren’t toys. We don’t own guns to be cool, and people who just leave them lying around in the open or otherwise mishandle them are told to straighten up.

We take gun safety seriously and are completely flabbergasted when see the way some people treat firearms. Who in their right mind would actually shove a loaded pistol down the front their pants? What could possibly go wrong?

All of my lessons returned to me this week as I began to prepare earnestly for the 22nd Annual Buffalo Bill Invitational Shootout which will be held Aug. 6-8, 2015 at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Cody Firearms Museum and at the Read More

Moving Ground in Yellowstone Country

July 17th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

We have a lot of thermal activity here in Yellowstone Country.

Old Faithful’s eruptions varies from 51 to 120 minutes

Inside Yellowstone National Park (around here we just call it “The Park”) is the world’s largest concentration of geysers and other thermal features totaling in the 10,000 neighborhood. Everybody knows about Old Faithful, but many people are surprised to find so many other geysers as well as fumaroles, hot springs and mud pots scattered throughout the park.

Here in Cody we also have our share of thermal features, and I’m not talking about our “hot” cowboy musicians. Back in the early 1800s, John Colter was a member of the Lewis and Clark expedition who went on side trips. Colter made his way in what are now Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. He also made it to what is now our humble town of Cody, where he came upon thermal activity that became known as “Colter’s Hell.”

In 1807 John Colter discovered an active geyser district: steam mixed with sulfur fumes and shooting flames escaped through vents in the valley floor. This is now known as Colter’s Hell

Heat and the smell of sulfur lend themselves to colorful nicknames. That thermal area is Read More

What Happened in Yellowstone Country a...

July 6th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

The Fourth of July holiday parade is one of the biggest events in Cody, Wyoming every year, and one of the things that is especially exciting is finding out who was selected to be the parade grand marshal. The honor of grand marshal has been bestowed on many recognizable individuals – John Wayne, Bobby Allison, Steven Seagal and Chuck Yeager, to name a few. Chances are, though, you haven’t heard of this year’s grand marshal, but his selection has had me brushing up on my Cody history. I thought you might like hearing about what I learned.

2015 Cody Stampede Parade Grand Marshal Chief Joseph Medicine Crow High-Bird.

Our 2015 Grand Marshal was Dr. Joseph Medicine Crow. He is 101 years old and is the only living person to receive the oral history from the Custer Battlefield. His grandfather was a scout for General Custer. What was it like to live in Yellowstone Country when Dr. Medicine Crow was a youngster? I found some clues in “The Cody Club 1900-1999,” a book about the history of the Cody Country Chamber of Commerce.

To put it literally, it’s been a rough road.

1914 – The year Dr. Medicine Crow was born, the Cody Club Read More

Happy Memorial Day

June 1st, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Monday, May 25, was a day of many emotions for me.

Like most people in Cody, Wyoming and around the country, I view Memorial Day weekend as the start of summer. Yes, I know there is close to a month to go until the solstice, but by then we will be in full summer mode complete with barbecues, rodeos, swimming, hiking, casting a fly and all of the other things we dream about in January.

This past holiday weekend saw me making a couple of slow loops through Cody on foot to look for old friends I had not seen for a while, to check out the latest summer fashions at my favorite shops and to make note of the improvements to our storefronts. Many business owners set the weekend as their deadline for new coats of paint, flowers, lights and any other projects they have in mind. In a great year I get lucky and Dan Miller has a new poster displayed at the theater of him and his Empty Saddles Band.

Cody’s Memorial Day Ceremony drew a large crowd.

I then took some time to soak up the sun on a patio and enjoy lunch in the open air. The linksters Read More

Get your Quirk on in Buffalo Bill’s...

March 26th, 2015 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Some of my friends think I’m, well, unusual. I believe the best ice cream flavor is anything but vanilla; I choose cars painted in colors not found in nature (presently highlighter yellow); my fashion choices often combine classic cowgirl, Grandma’s lace and ‘60s mod; and my decorating style is what my friends kindly call “eclectic.” So it is only fitting that I live in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country.

Cody’s Trolley Tour will take you through 100 years of history.

 Many towns claim to be unique, but Cody takes being unusual to a whole new level. I call that level quirky. No other town that I know of has such a strange and wonderful mix of sights and experiences.

The famous Cherrywood bar at the Irma Hotel.

Here are just a few examples of the quirkiest of Cody’s experiences:

Savor a key lime truffle handmade by a saddle bronc rider. Rock the Cowboy Boogie in the one-time home of a successful madam with a heart of gold. Eat Rocky Mountain Oysters at a room-long bar that was presented to Buffalo Bill Cody by Queen Victoria. Learn about gun safety from a wacky group of local actors with a penchant for to-the-hilt dressing in old-timey cowboy clothes. See Read More

It’s True. And we Have the Awards to...

December 5th, 2014 by Park County Travel Council | Comments(1)

Our little slice of heaven here in Cody, Wyo. just received four awards from one of my favorite magazines – True West.

I have read this publication whenever possible for as long as I can remember. Even the name of the magazine gets straight to the essence of our existence. It reminds me of the time I visited a friend in New Hampshire who was incredibly proud of his collection of Yankee magazines.

If Buffalo Bill Cody were alive today he would, at the very least, be a regular columnist if not the editor and publisher of True West.

The historic Irma Hotel years ago.

True West has published since 1953. Its mission is to “capture the spirit of the American West with authenticity, personality and humor by linking our history to our present. Whether you call it the Wild West, the Old West or the Far West, America’s frontier history comes to life in True West, the world’s oldest, continuously published Western Americana magazine.”

The magazine’s annual Heritage Travel Guide recognizes readers’ and editors’ favorite towns, parks, forts, hotels, saloons and restaurants.

Cody winners this year include Editor’s Choice for “Best Old West Town to Live In,” “Best American Indian Collection – Buffalo Bill Read More