EVENTS

The National WWAC has shut down but many of the Reagional WWAC events are still going strong.  I’ll try to post the dates of the next events if you will send them to us.

FLORIDA:  Gordie Peer has had great luck keeping his event going. Over 110 people were there this year. Held the first weekend in Feb. the weather in FL was great this year. Over half of the 110 people were WWAC members and you will have a great time at his ranch.

OHIO:  Gery Deer is still going strong with the Anie Okley days event. Held in July or Aug. I will get the exact dates.for this year.

CALIFORNIA:  Judy Taylor is still running the event at the Will Rogers Ranch in CA. There is a good turnout for this event. It happens in Sept or Oct.  We will get the dates for you.

TEXAS:  Mike Bainton’s   IKTA  has it’s annuel contest in Austin TX. each Nov. This is a big event and they have a knife throw at the Alamo.

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New Stars

Over the past 4 years I have seen a few of the WWAC members become new stars

Jack Dagger   aka  Todd Abrams

If you watch the History Channel you will see a show called  “Top Shot” if you see a segment with knife throwing don’t miss it.   Jack does some amazing knife throwing. Someone throws a grape in the air and he throws a knife through it.  Jack also has a new knife throwning instructional DVD which we sell at Western Stage Props. It is great. $19.95

Adam Windridge:   ada   Adam Windridge….

Over the past 4 years I have watched Adam develop into one of the best whip crackers. He can do it all.  From target work to style. He has worked hard.

 

SASS Las Vegas Western Performers Convention.

SASS    The Single Action Shooting Society

For the past 3 years SASS has been trying to carry on the WWAC tradition.  Each year at there annual convention at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas they have been holding a western performers contest. I have been one of the judges along with Montie Montana Jr. and many others from the SASS group. They have held contest in Trick roping, Whips, Knives and Gun Spinning.  The first year was there biggest. About 50 of the WWAC members came. It was almost like a reunion. Since then it has tappered off. Last year there were about 25. Along with the contest Ben Essling ran a Whip clinic and there was Mike Bainton with a Knife throwing range the first year.  Some WWAC members just came to watch.  Next year they are moving it to the SASS head quarters in NM.  Buck has done a great job trying to keep the WWAC skills alive.

The Last Roundup

Over the last 4 years we have lost a few of our best friends. I’m not going to write a lot about them. You know them as well as I do. If you have a story about any of the following you would like to share email it to me.

Larry Roback:  Larry died in his sleep at 87.  Larry had a Rodeo act back in the 50′ and 60′s.  Never missed a WWAC event and as far as I know made it to every NFR in Las Vegas.

Hub Hubbell:  Died sitting on the back porch of his ranch house in Sarasota, FL. He was 93. I  heard of Hub when I was a kid but got a chance to work with him and his wife Eunice 25 years ago.I produced a show for 3 years  at the Belmont Horse Fair. Hub did it all, Whips, ropes, trick shooting and trick horses. We had a lot of fun working together.

Joe Bowman:   Died in his sleep on the way back from doing the show at SASS end of trail.   He was 83.   If he wasn’t booked Joe never missed the WWAC convention. He was well liked and always gave a helping hand to all.  A real Texas Gentleman

Alex Green:   Died about 1 1/2 years ago of Cancer. age 67.  Alex was a friend to all and always a big help. Alex put the boy back in Cowboy. He loved his life as a stuntman and doing all the western skills. He did it all with perfection. He was also a very tallented artist and designed the WWAC logo.

Vince Bruce:   Died this year of cancer age 55.  Everyone has a Vince Bruce story. I’ll tell you the best one.  In 1990 I was standing on the back porch of the Will Rogers Ranch house in Los Angles. With me was Will Jr. and his brother Jimmy Rogers. We were watching Vince trick rope on the lawn. Will Jr turned to Jimmy and me and said. “This kid (looking at Vince) is the best roper I have ever seen. Even better than my dad”  (meaning Will Rogers)

Helen Panzella:  Died last year, she was in her 80′s.  When Helen was a 14 year old girl in the Bronx she went to the NFR in Madison Square Garden. She saw the trick riders and it was all over. That’s what she wanted to do.  She worked hard and in 1971, 72 and 73 she was one of the featured trick riders in the NFR.  She traveled the rodeo circut with her bulldoging husband Nick for 40 years. She learned trick ropering from Rex Rossi, Jr. Esque, and many of the other greats. She made the best leather burners.

 

 

Names in the news

One of our own WWAC members made it to the semi finials of “Americas Got Talent” show.
Dan Mink assisted by Melody did a great job with knife throwing and trick shooting. On the next show they had Dans trick horse and some trick roping. They only western act to get any further was “Johnny Lonestar” aka John Gionnotti Jr. who made it into the finals a few years ago.
Johnny has been living and working 3 shows a day in Branson Mo.
Cowboy Larry and beth are busy in New Jersy and around the north east doing shows.
They are regulars at Wild West City in Netcong NJ and Malibu Dude Ranch in Milford PA.
Angelo Iodice aka A.J. Silver is still traveling around the world appearing in shows. Angleo stopes in to see us every time he is in Las Vegas. He took a look at the last batch of rope we had and told us it was some of the best rope he has seen in a long time.
Tom Reich from TX always ask me if there is any western shows in Las Vegas. The Cirque show “Elvis” had a western segment that was expanded. Loop Rowlans aka ” Mikel Hong” and Robert Baskal were joined by Bonny West this year. It’s the best part of the show. Unfourtunily the show is closeing by the end of 2012.
Jo and I had to do a Corperate event about a year ago so I invited Kevin Fitzpatric who brought his wife Trina to Vegas. It’s always great to watch Kevin work. Lots of Tx / Mex style.

Rope Lines Newsletter

Howdy.
It’s been 4 or 5 years since our last newsletter and the WWAC closed it’s doors.
During those years I receive about 6 calls per month asking about other club members, events and just the latest news. I have turned the WWAC web page into the “Rope Lines Newsletter”
Nothing formal just the lattest news from your friends at the WWAC.
If you have something you would like other WWAC members or fans of the Wild West Skills to know about just contact me and I will post it on this sight.
Watch in the next few weeks for more stories and info. I have sent out 400 post cards to all the club members that we had current addresses on.
Mark Allen

Wild West Arts Club History

Of course, all the Arena Arts started as practical skills. Use of the rope goes back into the mists of time but it was brought over to the New World by the Spaniards and worked its way up into the States. At the nearest playground you’ll see how the basic ranching skills began to develop into elaborate performances. Any group of kids embarking on a new sport are going to challenge each other and perfect their prowess. So it was, too, that the very necessary ability to ride a horse, lasso a cow, pull a gun or steer a herd, came to be marvelous arts that we cherish today. The WWAC exposes new groups to these skills and cultivates the talents of those who are already interested.

The Club was started fifteen years ago when Mark Allen held a Trick Ropers Convention at the Will Rogers Ranch in California. Mark had traveled around the world and supported himself by performing western routines. He discovered that people everywhere are fascinated by the skills of the American cowboy and when he got back home he decided to dedicate himself to helping others learn & practice those arts. At that first get-together in 1990, Will Rogers Jr., his brother Jimmy Rogers, Montie Montana and over 100 trick ropers decided to keep things going.
Trick roping was in decline at the beginning of the 20th century when Will Rogers made it a part of his theatrical routine. Here, at the start of the 21st century, interest in this by-gone skill is on the rise and it’s probably safe to say the the WWAC has been instrumental in the recent resurgence of all these skills. Appropriately, The Will Rogers Memorial of Claremore, Oklahoma has supported the WWAC with grants for Trick Roping Prizes that are awarded at the Club’s annual get-togethers.

It takes a lot of work to master any of the Western Arena Arts but even beginners can get a lot of satisfaction the first time they see their ropes make a circle or hear their whips crack. Whole families return to the WWAC get-togethers year after year and it’s wonderful to see the progress made by little “whippersnappers” who become more and more proficient as they enter their teens. The WWAC puts its efforts & money into being “Savers of the Lost Arts.”

Education: Small meets are held throughout the year in Texas, Florida, New Jersey and Wisconsin where members practice, learn, compete and share their knowledge while seeing old pals. Aside from regional gatherings, the Club hosts an annual event in Las Vegas, which is attended by as many as 300 people aged 8 to 80.

Members come from all over to enhance their skills. Youngsters of five can develop their techniques literally at the knees of old hands from the Golden Age of the Western Movies. Montie Montana, Jr. – from a legendary Wild West family and the producer of the modern day Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show – makes time to tutor little boys & girls in many of the western disciplines. And, yes, girls are a large part of the WWAC. The California Cowgirls, Riata Ranch Cowboy – Cowgirls, Tucson Boys Chorus, Cactus Cowboys and kids from all over attend our events.

Welcome to the WWAC

The Club was started  when Mark Allen held a Trick Ropers Convention at the Will Rogers Ranch in California. Mark had traveled around the world and supported himself by performing western routines. He discovered that people everywhere are fascinated by the skills of the American cowboy and when he got back home he decided to dedicate himself to helping others learn & practice those arts. At that first get-together in 1990, Will Rogers Jr., his brother Jimmy Rogers, Montie Montana and over 100 trick ropers decided to keep things going.