Our Readers Write

TRAVIS NYE, ROPING CHAMPION
Comments on the October 8, 2017 Camp IOU newsletter.

“The roping was the Wrangler National Team Roping Finals. I have roped at the finals two other times, but have never had any luck. This is the largest payout I have received for an event. The horse I rode is a 9 year old mare that I bought about 2 months ago. She does everything right so it makes my part easy. Team roping is a sport that allows you to get away from the grind of the work week or day. You have to be focused and in the moment, much like golf. It’s also one of the few hobbies that will actually pay for itself if your lucky.” – Travis Nye

FROM ACROSS THE POND
Re: Afternoon Tea at the Jersey Lilly 2016
Very many thanks for sharing this review – together with photos – of an astounding tea party. I was deeply impressed with the staging of the event and the trouble to which the ladies had gone to make it so special.

In Victorian and Edwardian times, the milliners of London created the most fabulous hats for ladies. Actresses led the fashions and not just the wealthy appearing in the Royal Enclosure at the Ascot Races.

I noted the beautiful tea services being used and the decorum of the event. Most impressive coming from our cousins over the pond!!!! At least some people appreciate the living standards and life style of a bygone age.

Please let the sentiments and admiration of a Brit be known to those who organised and attended this splendid function.
Warm regards as always.
Keith Shipman
Saarlouis – Nalbach
Germany
[Ed.: Read the full story about the afternoon tea here]

MUSINGS FROM THE PRAIRIE
“My great uncle was Vern Thomason from Jordan area; since he also raised sheep we assume he may have taken the wool to Ingomar for shipping. We had some contact with him long ago, before he died; and we were able to go out to the old ranch with permission from the current owner (about forty years ago now). He told a story to my youngest brother, about a man who murdered someone in the area; and the law was going to be some days away at that time…Read more

LINDA LOU: Although Owen Badgett does not do email we got Peggy’s story to him by phone. And we will ask around for more information about the sheepherders that frequented Ingomar, and share with readers. Thanks Peggy!

“I knew Owen years ago when I lived in Miles City. I still have a poetry book that he autographed for me. Its in a box but I still have it! Owen used to come down to the Hole In The Wall where a bunch of us girls worked and he would come down and say hey and hang out for a bit.:) I hope he had a good turn-out at the Museum last night.” – Stephani S-C.

Camp IOU News

A Visit from the Old West

Jan and Mike Hillenbrand at Camp IOU
 
Jan and Mike Hillenbrand visited Camp IOU early this summer, all the way from Thousand Palms, CA. They arrived in their motor home, and stayed a few days. Our paths originally crossed some years ago in the little California high desert mining town of Randsburg. (You gotta go there). The nearby gold mine was still active to some degree, characters roamed the dusty streets, and we hit real pay dirt when we entered the Hillenbrands’ General Store, with its old fashioned soda fountain.
 
We talked Jan and Mike (that day) into helping us put on Western Theatre in Randsburg. Jan remembers her son Joe coming in to the living part of the store, from the counter, and announcing, “Mom, there’s a crazy lady out there, and she wants to use our living room for tryouts for a play.” Jan (although she may have regretted this decision at times) thought, “Why not?” And in seven weeks, “The Miner Incident” charmed a packed audience in front of the old Randsburg schoolhouse.
 
Linda Lou based this version of the vintage melodrama on ‘true rumours’ about the area. And there were plenty!  Hart played the nearsighted, elderly sheriff, Jan played a most convincing heroine, and her son Joe was conscripted to play the hero. (Did I mention there weren’t too many people living in Randsburg?)
 
All the characters did a great job. Many newspapers and magazines wrote about the shows. And they took off in popularity. Busloads of people came all the way (about 2 hours) from LA to be a part of the fun.
 
More amazing adventures followed (after Hart carefully tore down the stage he had built just for the first play, and returned the unscathed lumber to its owner) (He reminded Linda Lou that there would be no future lumber borrowing, if there even was a future for the two of them).
 
Sometimes we were hired to appear at other places. Once we took the entire set and cast traveling to a Death Valley Resort, and setup on the golf course. (Not an easy task to be sure). We played to a packed audience of visiting Germans in 45 mile an hour freezing winds. At intermission the audience all left. Who could blame them? After intermission, they all came back, with blankets. At one point the heroine’s hair blew over her face, and she almost fell off the stage. Ah, memories.
 
This time around, Jan cooked, Linda Lou cooked, Mike made tri-tip and Hart cooked his famous “Swingin’ Chicken’. Hart saw the recipe on the TV show ‘Swamp People’, and has been devising various ‘Swingin’ Chicken’ cooking cans for a few years now. Mike likes to keep moving, so he grabbed the mower, and trimmed things up around the garage.
 
Great times; great friends. As the visit came to a close, the Hillenbrands continued on their way to Michigan. And we had added a bunch of new fun memories with our old friends.
 
More photos…