Robin Burwash

Okotoks and the surrounding area has had many colorful and talented cowboys over the years. One only needs to think about the Glass Family, Iris, Tommy and Jason and the thoughts of chuckwagons comes to mind. Think Robin Burwash and you immediately associate bucking horses. Think Wayne Vold and you envision a ranch with the most beautiful horses all "born to buck". If there was a "horse whisperer" in Okotoks, he was Gid Garstead. Cowboys and Okotoks are synonymous.

Rodeo is a part of a very unique lifestyle in Okotoks, a tradition handed down from the forefathers who developed various events, evolved them into competitions of individuals and animals, and competed against their neighboring ranches.  It was all about the most skilled cowhands and the best animals and Okotoks has had it's fair share. The Okotoks Pro Rodeo continues to provide the same fierce competition, skill and excitement. 

Although the modern day cowboy no longer wears his guns, hitches his horse along main street, or trots directly into the local watering hole, Okotoks is still very much a cowboy town producing the best of the best - World Champions of the Rodeo.

Ian Tyson

Real Cowboys Drink Cappuccino

And now they can find it in Longview, a village west of Okotoks. "Cowboys like their coffee hot," said singer-songwriter Ian Tyson, who recently opened a take-out coffee house on the main street of Longview. He has called his enterprise Navajo Mug - a play on words from his 1986 song Navajo Rug.  Listen to Navajo Rug

A rodeo rider when he was in his late teens and early 20s, Ian took up the guitar while recovering from an accident he sustained in a fall. Ian Tyson's ranch west of Okotoks inspires his songwriting about cowboys, horses and the old west. Coined "word painter of the west", Ian is one of Canada's legendary country and western singers. His lyrics reach the heart of the West.;

Half a Mile of Hell

Half Mile of Hell allows listeners to feel the exhilaration of the chuckwagon races and the thrill of the rodeo. Listen to Half a Mile of Hell

Denny Halstead

Rodeo Clowns put themselves in the line of danger every time they go to work. With painted-on smiles and baggy britches, they manage to evoke the nostalgia of the old west as they risk their lives to protect others.  It may look like fun and games to the people in the stands, but it is serious business. Not just any clown can do it. Okotoks is proud of the many clowns that have called her home over the years.

Denny the Rodeo Clown

Dennis Halstead joined the rodeo circuit without any training on how to be a rodeo clown. Since then, he has been named the Canadian Entertainer of the year twice and is ranked as one of the top five rodeo clowns in the world.