“All About The Livestock” — a fundraiser for the South Dakota Rancher’s Relief Fund, to aid producers who lost cattle, sheep and horses in the devastating early October blizzard, known as “Atlas” — will take center stage at the Historic Homestake Opera House in Lead, S.D., at 2 p.m. on Nov. 24.
The afternoon will be filled to the rafters with outstanding cowboy music and poetry, thanks to the generosity of the Opera House Board of Directors.
Steve and I have been involved in ranching our entire lives, and after seeing the horrific photographs of thousands of head of dead livestock after Atlas moved out, we wanted to do something to help.
At dinner one evening, the idea of a cowboy concert to benefit the ranch families was born.
We started working on it with the Grand Encampment Cowboy Gathering, and reached out to people who have performed at the annual event there, as well as to poets and musicians we know in South Dakota.
The performers — without a moment’s hesitation — agreed to donate their time and talent to help the livestock producers devastated by the blizzard.
Each performer who will take the stage in Lead comes with an understanding of the livestock industry and most of them are ranchers themselves. They recognize the losses not only of this year’s crop, but also the years of effort it takes to build a foundation herd. In addition to raising some money for the ranchers, we want this concert to be a celebration of ranching life.
The intent of the show is to “pay it forward, from the heart,” said co-organizer Ken Cook.
And what a show this will be, with the lineup including:
• Chuck Larsen, a South Dakota native now living in Saratoga, Wyo., is a cowboy humorist, storyteller, and B.S.-er who will Emcee this outfit from start to finish.
• Dave Stamey of Nipoma, Calif., is a four-time Entertainer of the Year, recognized by the Western Music Association.
• Trinity Seely of Alcova, Wyo., is one of the most sought after singer songwriters in the business. She and her husband work the Handcart Ranch in central Wyoming.
• Steve Moulton of Encampment, Wyo., is a lifelong rancher and winner of the Wrangler Award as Outstanding New Artist from the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in 2010.
• Caitlyn Taussig is a fourth-generation rancher and singer/songwriter in Kremmling, Colo.
• Robert Dennis, Ken Cook and Paul Larson have South Dakota roots, and they’ll present “Cowboy Culture South Dakota Style,” which they say is entertainment at a level you can only experience from the back of a horse.
Tickets are available at the door and online at www.HomestakeOperaHouse.org.
Admission is $50 for premium seating, $20 for adult general seating and is free for kids 12 and younger.
General seating will be available on a first-come/first-served basis.
For more information, call the Historic Homestake Opera House office at (605) 584-2067.
Off-street parking at the Historic Homestake Opera House is available on Main Street at the front courtyard entrance to the building, and also at the rear of the building on Julius Street, where the building is most accessible for wheelchairs.
Assisted listening devices are also provided.
All proceeds will benefit the South Dakota Rancher Relief Fund.
The Historic Homestake Opera House is located at 313 West Main Street, in Lead, S.D.
Donations may also be made to the South Dakota Rancher Relief Fund at www.giveblackhills.org, or by sending a check payable to “Rancher Relief Fund,” and sent to the Black Hills Community Area Foundation/SD Rancher Relief Fund, P.O. Box 231, Rapid City, SD 57709. ❖