The Woodward News

Local News

August 8, 2012

Cowboy history program set in Waynoka

Woodward, Okla. — WAYNOKA - A talk on cowboy history, tied in with the 76th Annual Cimarron River Stampede, is set for Saturday afternoon at the Harvey House, 1386 Cleveland St.

Sandie Olson, president of the Waynoka Historical Society, said lovers of Western history and rodeoing should come at 2 p.m. to hear the program by Bill Bixler.

"Bill has family cowboy history dating back to even before the opening of the Cherokee Strip in 1893," Olson said.

Bill's father, Rex Bixler, is a former tie-down roping champion at the Woodward Elks Rodeo.

"Bill will be joined by long-time family friend Stewart Hodges, who will also share stories about experiences he had with Rex and others," Olson said.

One such experience involves quarterhorss. Les and Fossie Floyd Bixler, the parents of Rex Bixler, purchased  Harmon Baker B, a colt, in 1940. The horse was raised to be a stud at the Bixler Ranch, and today its registration is linked to more than 20 million offspring, Olson said. The Bixler's bred quarterhorses in Rose Valley near Waynoka.

Olson said there will be a display of photographs and artifacts. The program is free, and refreshments, also free, will be served.

The adjacent Waynoka Air Rail Museum will open at 12:30 p.m. and visitors  can take in information about the Cherokee Strip, look at photographs, read up on Fred Harvey, creator of the Harvey House restaurants and lodgings across the country, and gaze at a big brass bell that came from a Santa Fe Railroad steam engine.

Earlier, there will be a rodeo parade in downtown starting at 10 a.m. and the evening ends with the final performance of the rodeo at 8 p.m. at the rodeo arena. There are also rodeo performances tonight and Friday.

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