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Look Who’s Coming

January 18th, 2017 by Park County Travel Council | Comments (3)

So one day last summer I was bustin’ a move—part backcountry hiking pace and part Texas Two Step—down Sheridan Avenue when I came upon a dude with a clipboard and smirk.

“What do you call that little dance step, lassie?” he asked.

“First of all, I am no lassie,” I replied. “You may call me Ms. Cody, and if I deem you worthy you may call me Corrie. Second, there is no name for that dance step. It is something that just happens when Dan Miller singing ‘Ghost Riders in the Sky’ gets stuck in my head. Fighting it is like trying to defy gravity.”

“I apologize for being so forward, Ms. Cody,” he said. “I also saw Dan’s show at his new digs in the Buffalo Bill Center of the West last night, and I must say that I hoofed it back to my hotel with the sounds of ‘Happy Trails’ putting a big smile on my face. It was still in my own head as I drifted off to sleep.”

“In that case, apology accepted and please call me Corrie,” I said. “Now, what’s up with the clipboard?”

Well, it turns out that my new friend was conducting a survey on behalf of Read More


The World-Changing, Pic-a-nicking Bear

January 11th, 2017 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

I was sitting in my favorite nook at Legends Bookstore sipping on a latte and searching for some light reading when I happened upon an article written in 2008 by the former curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum, John Rumm, PhD. for the Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Points West newsletter.

I know I LOL’d more than once, and my friends in the bookstore wanted to know why. I told them, and we all pulled up the article and learned the story of the country’s most beloved bear. Not Winnie. Yogi. And it is one of those timeless tales that bears (ahem) re-telling.

Human-bear interactions in Yellowstone National Park were common even before automobiles were permitted in the park.

Yogi the Bear was “the wise-cracking, tie-wearing, rule-breaking denizen of Jellystone National Park.” Created by William Hanna and Joe Barbera — the same guys who brought us “Tom and Jerry” – Yogi was introduced to America in 1958, at a time when the country was in “Happy Days” mode experiencing post-WW II prosperity and hitting the road to see the USA in their Chevrolets.

The National Park Service used Yogi to deliver cautionary messages about the dangers of feeding the bears.

Welcoming record Read More


The Spectacle of Buffalo Bill’s Death

January 5th, 2017 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Buffalo Bill Cody died on January 10, 1917, and as we mark the centennial of his death in a few days, I’ve been thinking about the continuing controversy about his true burial place. Although he was always the showman in life, I don’t think he would have liked the spectacle surrounding his death. It wasn’t what he wanted.

He died while visiting relatives in Denver, and I guess you can’t really blame the city and its newspaper, The Denver Post, for claiming a piece of the publicity pie by paying his widow for his body and staging an elaborate funeral on the city streets. Thousands of people paid their respects as Buffalo Bill Cody laid in state in the Colorado Capitol.

After the funeral, Buffalo Bill’s body was taken to a Denver mortuary to await the spring thaws for burial in the ground.

Several of Buffalo Bill’s friends were infuriated that Buffalo Bill was going to be buried in Denver instead of on Cedar Mountain overlooking the town he founded as he had wanted. They staged an elaborate switch, brought his body back to Cody and quietly buried him in an unmarked mountaintop grave.

Although Denver insists that the switch never occurred and Buffalo Read More


Chocolate, Ice and Ernest; Corrie’s New...

December 26th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Oh, what a year it has been here in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country. From the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service to the 5th anniversary of the Heart Mountain WW II Interpretive Center we celebrated many milestones and noteworthy events. It was a year to remember, and I think 2017 will be a heck of a year too.

As I reflect upon the past year and look forward to the new one, I have developed some resolutions that will let me embrace the next 12 months with gusto. Here are a few of them.

Eat more chocolate. I resolve to try each truffle that our own Cowboy Chocolatier – Tim Kellogg – can create for his charming Meeteetse Chocolatier I’ve tried most of them already, but the Wyoming Whiskey and Prickly Pear Cactus Fruit Truffles are still on my list. Santa, are you listening?

More trips to the Meeteetse Chocolatier are in my future.

Do more pushups. I let my friends talk me into participating in the 19th-annual Cody Ice Festival in February, so I’m working on my upper body strength. But I don’t want to quit after the festival. Wait until you see those newly sculptured biceps when I’m rafting on Read More


The Heroes in Our Midst

December 20th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

I was saddened to read that one of our country’s great heroes, John Glenn, has died. He was a respected and much-loved astronaut and U.S. Senator. To many people, including myself, he was a true American hero.

The town of Cody was once honored to have him as our Cody Stampede Parade Grand Marshal, a very big deal for a town that takes five days to celebrate July 4. Senator Glenn, thank you for your service.

His death, after a life of service and honor, got me to thinking about some of the other heroes who have lived in our midst.

Senator John Glenn is one of the many American heroes who have honored Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country. He once served as Grand Marshal for the Cody Stampede Parade.

I didn’t have to ponder for long, because also this week there was a story about our own Cody Rotarians receiving the Community Hero Award for developing the Mentock Park all-inclusive playground for use by children living with disabilities. This group of civic leaders applied for grants and raised $100,000, and then its members spent three fall weekends removing the old playground and installing the new one. Ashlee Lundvall, Bruce Eldredge and other Rotarians Read More


And Snow, It Begins

December 13th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

When winter’s snow comes to Yellowstone Country, the region’s unique climate characteristics combine to create a landscape that is so stunning, that I don’t believe any photographer can ever really do it justice. You must see it for yourself.

In addition to breathtaking winterscapes, when snow comes to Yellowstone Country it marks the beginning of several months of cold-weather outdoor fun that includes fishing, skiing, snowshoeing, hiking and even ice climbing. And when you’re an active outdoor adventurer like me, that means it’s time to get out the gear.

These were my thoughts as I drove through the Wapiti Valley the other day, snowshoes carelessly piled atop mid-weight synthetic layers and wool socks on the back seat of my Subaru. This valley west of town leads to Sleeping Giant Ski Area (opening Dec. 16) and some great cross country skiing trails. It’s also the valley that leads to the East Gate to Yellowstone National Park.

The Buffalo Bill Scenic Byway leads to the Sleeping Giant Ski Area and Pahaska Tepee, a great snowshoeing destination. Photo courtesy Pahaska Tepee.

I was heading to Pahaska Tepee near the park gate for some early-season snowshoeing on trails that meander behind Buffalo Bill Cody’s hunting lodge. The Read More


Corrie Waxes Lyrical About Christmas in Cody

December 5th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Baby, it’s cold outside, so I’m spending the day at home. You’ll find me making my list and checking it twice, decking my halls, stringing lights on the ol’ Tannenbaum, placing holly on my own front door and extra logs on the fire. I’ll hang the mistletoe in my foyer, because everybody knows that will help to make the season merry and bright.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and around town in Cody.

Later, one of my dearest friends will travel over the Shoshone River and through the woods to my house. I met him at Cassie’s Supper Club and Dance Hall, and he’s been teaching me to dance. I placed this year’s six-foot-tall blue spruce in the middle of my living room so we can do the two-step around the Christmas tree. I’m hoping that later we’ll conspire and dream by the fire. I’ve been nice, not naughty this year, but still, I’ll let you know if there’s anything I must blame on the mistletoe. (Wink. Wink.)

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas here in the Corrie N. Cody household and in the town of Cody as well. Read More


A November to Remember

November 29th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Like many who feasted on turkey and cranberry sauce on Thanksgiving Day, the dear friends and family around my table shared the many things for which they were thankful. When it was my turn, I said simply, “my home and my freedom,” two things that many people – but obviously not all – have the luxury of sharing in this great country of ours.

It was a cold, kind of gray and a little blustery day here in Cody, Wyoming, as it can sometimes be in November, so we put a few extra logs on the fire and cranked up the heat just a bit. Sated, dishes done, we all gathered to watch and nap through some football. All except me, because my mood had turned somber. As I walked by my double-paned picture window after dinner, I could see – just barely – the outline of Heart Mountain.

To thousands of Americans of Japanese descent, the month of November represents far more than the month during which a nation comes together for a feast and launches the festivities of the holiday season. It is the month when a three-year nightmare shared primarily by Americans of Japanese heritage finally ended.

In November 1945, Read More


November’s Charms in Yellowstone Country

November 15th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

Here in Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country, things are a little quieter and a little slower during November’s pre-holiday lull, and I look forward to these days. November is my time to visit the places I love and linger for a good, long while. Since Cody is home to numerous museums and attractions that are open year-round, there’s always somewhere else to go, something else to see and something else to do.

A good example is the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, with many fabulous exhibitions during November. At the Draper Museum of Natural History – which is celebrating its 15th anniversary next year – there’s an exhibit called Invisible Boundaries: Exploring Yellowstone’s Great Animal Migrations. The exhibit was installed earlier this year, and it will be in place in the special exhibitions gallery through the end of this month. The Draper is the place to go before a Yellowstone visit because it explores and explains the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. This particular exhibit presents the challenges elk and other migrating mammals face when they leave park boundaries to search for resources during the winter.

Invisible Boundaries: Exploring Yellowstone’s Great Animal Migrations showcases the challenges faced by the region’s migrating mammals.

There’s also Read More


Appreciating My Foremothers

November 8th, 2016 by Park County Travel Council | Be the first to comment!

As I watch our country exercise its most cherished privilege – the right to vote – I am reminded of some of the Wyoming leaders who advanced and defended that simple act on behalf of the population that carries two X chromosomes.

First, a quick review of some relevant Wyoming milestones. The Wyoming Territory was formed in 1869. The same year it became a territory Wyoming also granted the country’s first female suffrage giving women the right to vote, a right women exercised in the election the following year. That act is truly remarkable, given that the 19th Amendment granting the women the vote nationally didn’t happen until 1920, half a century later.

Suffragist Mary Godat Bellamy became the first woman elected to the Wyoming legislature in 1910.

Suffrage wasn’t the only unprecedented thing that advanced women’s lives in that pivotal year of 1869. Legislators also passed a resolution allowing women to sit inside the same government building where lawmakers sat. They passed a bill guaranteeing married women property rights. And female schoolteachers were guaranteed the same pay as male teachers.

The motivation for these unusually women-friendly advancements were not necessarily because legislators had great confidence in women’s judgment. In reality, it was Read More