Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
There is a move afoot in Helena to do something intelligent. Since Wolf Point came up with the idea of a "Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame," they were awarded the state's official blessing and we've been waiting for it to come to fruition.

After more than seven years and not much accomplished besides a snazzy web page and a pie-in-the-sky proposal, the Lege is moving to remove Wolf Point's designation. Whether they intend to designate someone else or have a committee to accept recommendations is unclear BUT I certainly hope Miles City leads the pack.

Yes, Helena wants it because Helena wants everything. And Billings wants it because Billings wants everything Helena doesn't have but Miles City is the logical choice.

We may be calling on people for support. Or it may just all crash and burn, knowing the Lege, but keep your fingers crossed!
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Posted by Jessica Newell (+396) 10 years ago
Agreed!
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Posted by Bill Zook (+495) 10 years ago
There are a number of us (state-wide) who feel the appropriate place for a cowboy hall of fame is with the Range Riders Museum because of its historic location and history of its own. Wolf Point was chosen largely on the basis of a rodeo performer and movie actor who came from there. Just this past summer the Museum was chosen for the site for a memorial as the terminus for the trail herds brought to Montana during the last years of the 1800s and early years of the 1900s. Of course the majority of the cowboys in Montana originated with those trail herds, as did the ranching concept.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
The Hall of Fame would have to be administered separately from the Range Riders because it is a state-sponsored program but having it HERE would be a HUGE boost to the RR. I mentioned this to the Reps last night and they were all fired up and you know how the Reps get when that fire is under them!
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Posted by Matt Smith (+793) 10 years ago
Why not put it where your depot project is.

I think it would work well there & that would be a compliment to the business around there.

Just a thought...
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Posted by Steve Allison (+979) 10 years ago
Matt, that is what Amorette and I were thinking. The Wolf Point project is well over 4 million dollars, for less then 1, the depot could be restored and ready to roll in the displays.
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17224) 10 years ago
Helena.....home of COUNTRY CHARLIE PRIDE!!!!



Miles City....home of....hmmmm...Maurice Hillerman?

The Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame belongs in Helena.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
Yeah, all those cowboys riding the range around Helena, their cows falling down mine shafts. . .
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Posted by Mathew Schmitz (+282) 10 years ago
Was Charlie Pride a "cowboy" or just a dude singing country songs? Not ripping on Charlie, just saying...
I would submit that Miles City, a town known as "The Cow Capital of the West" and a town that hosts the Bucking Horse Sale, and a town that is home to The Range Riders Museum would be much better suited to host the Cowboy Hall of Fame than Helena, or any other town in Montana.
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Posted by howdy (+4942) 10 years ago
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3710) 10 years ago
It's a bit of a stretch to call Helena the "home" of Charley Pride.

I think that Wolf Point is not the best choice to put anything that you want people to actually see.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
Wolf Point is a bit off the beaten path, whereas Miles City is right off a major Interstate. We get TONS of traffic heading for the National Parks and Cowboy HoF might bring a few more in to stay overnight and enjoy Miles City.

I'm just practicing my sales pitch. Did you know Miles City was one of the three finalists for the National Cowboy Hall of Fame?
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Posted by whoo--watch it there (+9) 10 years ago
I have always thought the C HoF should be in Miles City, but I do live in Wolf Point, and it is not off the beaten path, Hwy 2 runs right through it- remember---and lots of traffic goes through here.
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Posted by seriously (+11) 10 years ago
Do you even know the first thing about a Cowboy?
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Posted by seriously (+11) 10 years ago
[This message has been edited by seriously (3/11/2011)]
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3710) 10 years ago
Well Amorette, it looks like you got Wolf Point's attention at least.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
I would like to see traffic counts comparing Highway 2 to Interstate 94. I suspect I know which one would be busier.
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Posted by Tom Masa (+2036) 10 years ago
Wolf Point or Glendive mmmm???
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Posted by whoo--watch it there (+9) 10 years ago
Are you f-in' kidding me---------------of course there is no comparison. I stated a fact, that US Hwy 2 runs through Wolf Point ( and we do have people who choose to use hwy 2), you--- an obvious----BUT there must have been SOME reason that Wolf Point was awarded the site over Miles City....could it be hospitality-- I don't know, I am not a part of the planning committee. I have lived in Miles City, thought it was a friendly town, til I moved to Wolf Point--- happy to be where I am. I have friends who have worked very hard on this project.. and for them, I hope it is a success. And I will continue to donate items for their fundraisers--doing what I can to see it through. Hope you do your part, other than "getting people fired up"..
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Posted by AJLYLES (+12) 10 years ago
Greetings,

On behalf of the Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame & Western Heritage Center, I would first like to express our appreciation for your support of our Mission to honor our cowboy way of life, American Indian cultures and our collective Montana Western heritage.

I thought I would jump into the dialogue here to offer any assistance I can in answering questions that you may have or to clarify some of the misinformation circulated here in this forum.

As you all are aware, the Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame & Western Heritage Center drafted and has submitted a legislative revision to our current designation that serves to clean up the previous legislative designation created in 2003. Some references in the original designation referenced people that have passed away since the writing of the bill, and so forth. While undertaking the clean-up effort for the bill anyhow, our state-wide board of directors saw the wisdom in slightly modifying the bills current language in a manner that provides us some very important flexibility as it relates to the continued development and building of the MCHF & WHC. This legislative effort that we initiated provides us the needed flexibility to execute all of our fiduciary responsibilities that the current law does not allow for us to conduct. Namely, the responsibility of conducting funding research studies related to the building site. The outcome of such studies will provide the Board of Directors information to determine the final size, scale and scope of the building project based on donor interest, ability to fund the construction effort, etc. The current law (which is still the law of the land at this time) is very specific that Wolf Point and only Wolf Point will be the building site of the MCHF & WHC. Thus, one may ask why conduct studies as to the financial feasibility of building the project in Wolf Point, if that location is the only available option. However, as we all know in soliciting funding for such a project, the donor's natural question of "if I invest in this project, will my investment further the mission of the MCHF & WHC to the same extent/degree that it would if the project was built in Baker or Dillon?" We as the MCHF & WHC then have a unique responsibility to the people of Montana that as we work to do all we can to further the Mission of the MCHF & WHC through this building effort, that we provide that donor with sound data that can inform their decision making process. Data that can only be developed from studies such as those discussed above.
In the end, the legislative effort simply aligns our responsibilities as a non-profit organization serving the public in a manner that is most appropriate and in a manner that best furthers our Mission.
Thought, HB 528's language could appear as an effort to move the building site - that is not in fact the case. It would be an unfortunate misinterpretation to come to that conclusion. It would be in conflict with current Montana law for our Board or any entity to actively be working in conflict with the designation that states very clearly that Wolf Point is the officially designated site. The Board of Directors knowing in advance that this language change could result in such a misinterpretation has prepared a position statement that has been published and is available for all. This position statement has also been adopted unanimously by our paid members, and our Board of Trustees that represent communities across all of Montana and beyond.
Speaking to the feasibility work that accompanies all building projects of this nature, the Board of Directors also keenly understands that any study is only as good as the data set and the extent to which the study is genuinely informed. We also understand that the outcome of such studies may result an outcome that states that an investment of $1 by a donor in community "x" may result in a different outcome than an investment of $1 in community "y". Therefore, if this proposed legislation does in fact pass, then the Board of Directors will implement the following course of action, but only after the passing of the legislation.
The Board will develop an official Request For Proposals that will solicit information from any and all communities in Montana interested in having the MCHF & WHC built in their community. Wolf Point will be answering the same proposal as any other community. This proposal will take into account many strategic factors important to the feasibility and long term viability of building a project of this nature.
A "standard set of criteria" will be developed with input from industry experts, consultants and institutions such as the Montana Institute of Tourism Research. This set of criteria will then be utilized to fairly and objectively review all proposals in an academic manner that puts facts and hard data together so that the Board of Directors can then review that data and determine the best path forward.
The Request for Proposals process will be strategically designed and implemented in a manner that is not only equitable to all communities, but respondents to the proposal will directly address the important questions related to feasibility and donor investment that I mentioned above.
The proposal process will also outline for each community the expectations of the Board of Directors that must be met in order that the Mission we exist to serve and fulfill is always at the forefront of all we do and all actions taken by communities as they work to respond to the Request for Proposals.
As our Board of Directors is composed of individuals from communities from all corners of the State we know and believe that every community in Montana has a rich heritage and legacy deserved of being the building site of the MCHF & WHC. In the end, the business model that best furthers our Mission and the selection of a location that best enables that business model will then in turn best furthering our Mission.
So what does this mean and what steps are next? For those community leaders and organizers ambitiously seeing an opportunity in this - please know we are thankful and grateful for your ambition. Please also know that until the time that the current law changes under the HB 528 effort (if that legislation even passes) - the law in Montana is clear about where the building site of the MCHF & WHC is and will be. Further, it is the position of the Board of Directors that there is no intent or desire to move the proposed building site location under this legislative clean-up effort.
Therefore, the MCHF & WHC Board respectfully requests that ambitious organizers please maintain your enthusiasm but please abide by the current law and know that perhaps the one and only way a community or individuals could excuse themselves from consideration or participation in this process would to be actively work to organize preemptive efforts to solicit support, funding, resources, etc., through a misrepresentation to others in your community of the Board of Directors wishes as if you were authorized to act on our behalf when in fact that authorization has been given to no one in this process. Simply, such actions demonstrate a willingness to put individual and special interests in front and above the Mission we exist to serve not to mention a disregard for the collective wisdom of the Board of Directors, Trustees and Members that have worked over the past years to organize this incredible effort. Perhaps the best thing you CAN do at this time is call the MCHF & WHC and if you are so inclined to be involved in the future of the MCHF & WHC because you believe in its mission and what it exists to accomplish - become a member, join your local district Trustee committee or find a meaningful way to become involved in the project itself. It is important to remember we are an organization - not a facility, and therefore we could always use ambitious energetic volunteers. If getting involved is predicated on what community the facility is built, then it is safe to say your intentions are not aligned with the Mission, but somewhere else.
All of this to say, we again are very grateful for the enthusiasm and ambition demonstrated here in this community forum. We hope that as this process continues to develop that interested community organizers throughout Montana eagerly await the opportunity to review the Request For Proposal and to determine if submitting a proposal response is what your community is interested in doing. In the meantime we invite everyone to get involved at the local or state level and we look forward to seeing you along the trail! Thank you for helping to self-police forums such as this. They are a great way to spread the word and keep the conversation moving. We are excited to have folks talking about the MCHF & WHC! Thank you!

Please call if I can be of service!
(406) 600-8231
Sincerely,

Aaron Lyles, Director of Finance, Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame & Western Heritage Center
Bozeman, MT


Lastly, earlier posts in the blog have resulted in some confused and frustrated readers contacting our offices seeking clarification. Here is a brief set of factoids to help clarify.
1.) The MCHF & WHC is not a state entity. We are a private organization organized as a 501c3 non profit organization. We have been identified by our state legislature through an official State Designation to fulfill an important mission for the people of MT.
2.) The State of Montana passed legislation in 2003 that designated the building site of the MCHF & WHC. That legislation was submitted by Rep. Frank Smith a current Montana House Representative on behalf of MCHF & WHC organizers. House Bill 528 submitted during this Legislative Session was also submitted on our behalf by Frank Smith and is a clean-up bill as stated above.
3.) The Board of Directors of the MCHF & WHC manages the organization and all of its dealings. It is a Board of individuals elected by their peers (Trustee's, paid Members and fellow Board Members.)
4.) Traffic Counts - Approximately 5% of the states counted traffic passes through Wolf Point. What is important here is to understand the data at hand not simply what the basic count numbers reflect. For example, for our purposes we need to know how many of those vehicles are likely to stop in and visit a MCHF & WHC facility. If the board makes its determination on just a simple count number - Miles City for example would not be the winning local in that outcome. Also what ther ways do people move from point A to B. For example passenger railroad systems, airline passenger traffic counts, etc.
5.) As to our progress or discussion related to the perception of lack of progress. Certinaly we live in a world where everyone wants what they want as fast as they can have it. We as a Board - will always have areas to improve upon as any organization would. As to pace for the building of teh facility we have to reflect upon what our primary objectives are. Is building a building the only and best way to further our mission? Perhaps, perhaps not. As a reference, it took the National Cowboy Hall of Fame nearly 20 years to assemble their financial strength and build their facility. The North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame broke ground in the eight to nine year range. The MCHF & WHC has accomplished many incredible milestones and benchmarks. This process is a credit to those accomplishments not in spite of them. That said - we aslo hope to take all concerns and fully vet them. If contructive dialogue can help us forward teh advancement of this project we enthusiastically welcome it.
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17224) 10 years ago
That sure is a long post for one that doesn't mention Country Charlie Pride EVEN ONCE
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Posted by Montana Kid (+112) 10 years ago
I heard this idea from some else and I love it: A mobile museum. BHS it's in MC, NILE it's in Billings, Stampede it's in Wolf Point, the list goes on. If it only comes through a couple times a year the overall total attendance of the museum should increase as it's following the numbers.
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Posted by AJLYLES (+12) 10 years ago
Great to hear the travelling museum project is getting traction there! For the time being we are calling it a "Museum Without Walls," as we are working through exactly what it will be and accomplish.

It would be housed in a gooseneck trailer with living quarters. The main trailer section would be the exhibit area with the living quarters area fitted to be a recording studio. In the studio we would invite folks to come in and share the many wisdoms and stories about themselves and their community. Sort of an oral history recording project that future generations can reference for an understand of who we are as Montanans today. Plus what a great way to capture some of the "old timer" stories before they are lost.

Would love your input on what you would like to see in the museum without walls.

We have been working very hard to find programs that we can bring to every community in the state and this is one unique way to literally bring the museum to you.

MCHF & WHC
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
Actually, the board of directors is composed entirely of people from northeastern Montana and one guy from Billings and one guy from Bozeman. Not exactly "every corner of the state." No one from Miles City. No one from Broadus. No one from Jordan.

I am very sad to hear that the I was mistaken. I know Wolf Point came up with the idea and that the family of Monte Montana was heavily involved but I still feel Wolf Point is not the logical location. Aside from having much less traffic than goes through on Interstate 90/94, Wolf Point does not have the automatic association with cowboys that Miles City does.

Sigh. Another great dream bites the dust.

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Posted by seriously (+11) 10 years ago
I am embarrased of the comments generated of the "not in the know" people of Miles City! Its apparent that the comments from certain people of MC (Amorette Allison), that they have not been on board with this project representing all people of the state of Montana. The statements posted here would have been fact and not BLOG DRAMA.
For a town that claims they are the only fit to the future of the MCHF and WHC I would expect nothing more but mature dialog instead of what's in it for us through immature comments.

LET IT GO Amorette! You clearly did not pay ATTENTION to the facts that were posted in Mr Lyles response above.

This project clearly is intended to honor the past, present, and future of Montana Cowboys and Cowgirls, American Indian Culture and Western Heritage.
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Posted by Wendy Wilson (+6175) 10 years ago
In the words of our inimitable webmaster, "THIS IS NOT A BLOG!"
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Posted by Bill Freese (+478) 10 years ago
Thought, HB 528's language could appear as an effort to move the building site - that is not in fact the case.

Please also know that until the time that the current law changes under the HB 528 effort (if that legislation even passes) - the law in Montana is clear about where the building site of the MCHF & WHC is and will be.

It sounds like you are saying HB 528 will not change the location, and then saying there will be no consideration of changing the location unless HB 528 passes. So which is it? Would HB 528 allow for a change of location or not?

The Board will develop an official Request For Proposals that will solicit information from any and all communities in Montana interested in having the MCHF & WHC built in their community.

Why would any community develop such a proposal if the law says the community chosen will be, in fact already is, Wolf Point? If the result of the study is already known and fixed by law, why would The Board ask for proposals?
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
We hope that as this process continues to develop that interested community organizers throughout Montana eagerly await the opportunity to review the Request For Proposal and to determine if submitting a proposal response is what your community is interested in doing.


So, we are supposed to develop a proposal and demonstrate why our community would be an excellent location for this facility but such a proposal is a complete waste of time because it will be put in Wolf Point no matter what? Did someone really write a bill that says this?

This 'clarification' just seem to have muddied the waters. What does the bill actually say?

And the Board of Directors should be committed to finding THE BEST location for such a facility rather than just supporting their individual community.
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Posted by AJLYLES (+12) 10 years ago
Bill,

Thank you for your questions.

As stated above the "intent" of the legislative clean-up is not to change the location. I can appreciate the confusion between "intent" and "consequence."
One of the natural consequences of this proposed legislative change is that as the process works to identify the information outlined above, it may become reality that we learn that certain feasibility and resource factors dictate that what is in the best interests of the Mission, would be to build the MCHF & WHC headquarters in an alternative location.
Being that this consequence is an obvious possible outcome, the Board was prepared before entering into the legislative revision process to take the position that their actions will always be in the best interests of the Mission and therefore to that end has adopted this Request for Proposals mechanism as a means to ensure that every possible outcome is fully vetted and fairly considered.
So if the Boards intent is not to change the location then why this legislation? As stated above, the legislative change allows us to develop the data set and fully explore what is in the best interests of fulfilling the Mission. The current law only allows for us to consider how we can best further the mission in Wolf Point. It seems to be pretty straight forward that if considering what is in the best interests of the mission regardless of location, that this process is then the natural outcome.
So though the Boards "intent" is not to move the MCHF & WHC, they are prepared to do so if the facts and data that become available to them through the process dictate that doing so is in the best interests in best fulfilling our commitment to the people of Montana and furthering the Mission of the MCHF & WHC.
As to timing of implementing this process and the appropriateness of each step along the trail - we obviously must defer to the law that currently exists on the books and that thought we fully endorse the legislative revision we have submitted, we understand the Legislature may choose to keep the law as it is. Therefore, if HB 528 does not pass, all of this discussion is a mute-point and the building will be built in Wolf Point regardless and this Request For Proposals process will not take place. To that end, the Request for Proposals process is a concept that can only be developed and implemented after HB 528 passes.
In effect what the Board ultimately is accomplishing through their actions here is to respectfully ask our state legislature for the opportunity to consider all options when reflecting upon the question of what is in the best interests of furthering our Mission.

Thanks again Bill.
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Posted by AJLYLES (+12) 10 years ago
The MCHF & WHC Board of Directors 2011

Dee Boyce, Lewistown
Butch Bratsky, Billings
Rob Bray, Culbertson
Darryl Crowley, Poplar
William "Bill" Galt, White Sulphur Springs
Mike Gurnett, Helena
Megan Helmer, Wolf Point
Mark Larson, Havre
Dick Lyman, Great Falls
Kathy McLane, Glendive
Gary Metcalf, Bozeman
Charles Moline, Brockway
Michael Neutgens, Wolf Point
Lynn Nordwick, Poplar
Scott Olsen, Helena
Ariel Overstreet, Helana
Stan Rassmussen, Choteau
Pete Rising, Culbertson
Frank Smith, Poplar
Christy Stensland, Wolf Point
DuWayne Wilson, Scobey
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Posted by Tom Masa (+2036) 10 years ago
A lot of people from Highway 2 or close to it.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
And no one from "Cowboy Country."

I have always felt that this was a Wolf Point tourism project more than anything else because to claim that Wolf Point is the 'best' location without ever having considered any other location makes it a Wolf Point project. A real "Montana" Cowboy HoF would have started with a search for a location rather than announcing a location.

What if a wonderful presentation is given proving that Wolf Point is not the best location? Will that Board of Directors happily relocate their attention to, say, Huntley or will they admit their bias?
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Posted by Montana Kid (+112) 10 years ago
Perhaps the Miles City people who are district trustees of this organization would like to give their thoughts on this.
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Posted by Bill Freese (+478) 10 years ago
Thank you for the reply, Aaron.
The Board will develop an official Request For Proposals that will solicit information from any and all communities in Montana interested in having the MCHF & WHC built in their community

If, as you say, the Board's "intent" is not to move the MCHF & WHC, I hope the Board will state very clearly in their Request For Proposals just how firm that intent is. I would hate to see some community put a lot of effort into a Proposal which is doomed before it starts.

On the other hand, if the Board is actually serious in its intent to "objectively review all proposals in an academic manner" then it will be necessary to make it clear that Proposals will not be viewed as hostile efforts to steal the MCHF & WHC from Wolf Point. You would not want it to appear that people making Proposals, as requested by the Board, were not "on board with this project."
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
Why ask for proposals if you have no intention of moving it from Wolf Point? I still don't understand that. If the entire Board is committed to Wolf Point as the location, why bother asking for proposals?

What is the purpose of asking for proposals to move the theoretical facility if you have absolutely NO intention of changing anything?
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17224) 10 years ago
If the Wolf Point contigency will commit to a Country Charlie Pride side wing, then they will secure a small financial commitment from me.
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Posted by AJLYLES (+12) 10 years ago
Bill,

I think you are 100% on point.

Though it is difficult to communicate the months/years worth of work and dialogue in a matter of a few pots, you can certainly trust the many heart felt discussions, consultations and reflections that have led to the submission of HB 528 have been honest, genuine and true to the spirit of the Mission at hand. There are many complex and interrelated elements that go into the development as something as important as this project - and the stewardship responsibilities that accompany the project are at the forefront of the Boards actions.

The bill itself is a very real symbol of that commitment. If the Boards intent was to only serve the special interests of Wolf Point, why would they create and propone changing the current law that ensures the ultimate protection of the Wolf Point building site.

Where the physical facility for this project is built, no one knows at this time. What matters more is that folks first believe in the the reason for the project(the Mission) and if they are fully invested in the "why" the "where" becomes far less contentious.

I believe that if the MCHF & WHC is provided the opportunity to implement the RFP process by our Legislature, you will see your concerns directly addressed throughout the process. It does not serve in the organizations best interests to waist any communities time - doing so would be at the cost of the Mission not its benefit. So again, your thoughts are certainly on point.

We always appreciate feedback and eagerly invite folks to get involved and participate in the organization. To be involved is to be informed. We know that an informed constituency is at the very heart of our ability to continue forward.

Thanks again for the constructive feedback. It is appreciated.

[This message has been edited by AJLYLES (3/13/2011)]
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 10 years ago
Gracious. You do have the politician's ability to say a whole lot without answering the question.

If the Boards intent was to only serve the special interests of Wolf Point, why would they create and propone changing the current law that ensures the ultimate protection of the Wolf Point building site.


What does that mean? Are you going to consider other communities with an open mind to chose the best place or not?
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Posted by korky II (+618) 10 years ago
I think Wolf Point should have the CHoF. Miles City has enought. So does all the other city. But Saco could be the one.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3710) 9 years ago
Miles City made the final round:

After an extensive review of proposals, the Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame & Western Heritage Center (MCHF & WHC) is one more step closer to construction by announcing the field of communities to continue into the third and final phase of the organization's building site selection process. The review of nearly 2,500 pages of submitted proposal materials from 10 Montana communities was conducted by the MCHF & WHC Board of Directors, the MCHF & WHC's preliminary architect, Scott Cromwell of Helena, Mont., and the nationally recognized non-profit consulting firm Martz and Lundy. Taking into consideration those factors essential to developing and sustaining a premier museum destination attraction, the MCHF & WHC Board of Directors is pleased to invite the following communities into the third and final selection phase: Big Sky, Big Timber, Livingston, Madison County, Miles City and Wolf Point.

In the third phase, interviews will be conducted in each finalist community to fully investigate the physical building sites that have been presented in each proposal. This phase will also include negotiations with prospective donors in the community, region and around the nation, to determine the ultimate financial feasibility and degree of support that exists for each location.

"Each community that submitted a proposal did so with the belief that they were the best future building site for the Hall of Fame and they each had something excellent to offer unique to their community," said DuWayne Wilson, MCHF & WHC President. "Every proposal submitted was exceptional and collectively reinforced the statewide interest in the cultural facility becoming a reality. Respondents rallied around their great love and pride for the towns in which they live and the state they each call home. The amount of sincere effort put into each proposal was truly humbling."

Since the beginning of the RFP process, the MCHF & WHC has strongly held that no community has the exclusive rights to Montana's collective western heritage. For this reason, the decision of which communities to investigate further was based on factors such as financial feasibility, volume of resident and non-resident visitation, characteristics of the proposed physical building sites, and infrastructure available within the community to support a major development project of this nature.

The MCHF & WHC plans to announce the winning site at the end of November; however, the timeframe for the final announcement will largely depend on scheduling availability with each community and the pace of negotiations with landowners and prospective donors.

"This is truly an idea for which the time has come," said MCHF & WHC Board Member Mike Gurnett. "Each day we lose a little bit more of our rich Montana cultural heritage to the passing of time. How many of us regret not having captured the many colorful stories of our grandparents, friends and neighbors before we lost them forever? This is capturing our history on a statewide stage and making it relevant to people's lives. Equally important will be taking the cultural story of Montana and creating a vibrant, interactive resource for all visitors to contribute to and draw from. There is no more important stewardship decision we will make during our tenure as board members than the selection of our future building site. It will serve an important role as a learning center and resource to all Montanans interested in preserving and passing forward their heritage."
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3710) 9 years ago
Anyone know where Miles City's proposed site is? It would be cool if it was next to the Range Riders but I'm not sure there is an appropriate space available there.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14943) 9 years ago
Maybe tear down the old fish and game building and put it there.
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Posted by Jim B (+231) 9 years ago
Across the highway from Range Riders on Fair ground property.

[This message has been edited by Jim B (11/5/2011)]
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Posted by Jeff Denton (+761) 9 years ago
Seems to me just about anybody could put together a cowboy hall of fame just about anywhere. Who needs any official endorsement from an existing committee? You know I'd like to see it happen in Miles City but doubt it could be funded.
I remember a sign in a front yard in Great Falls proclaiming the house behind it to be the "Home of Charley Pride". Now I wonder if just about anybody could put up a sign just about anywhere like that.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11730) 9 years ago
The old Barn Players site is the proposed site.

Jeff--"Official" comes with state money. The state Department of Commerce gave Wolf Point $500,000 several years ago to develop the whole thing. There is a vague assumption that more state money will be forthcoming if anything is actually developed, plus state support for advertising, etc. And if you started your own Hall of Fame, I am certain the "official" one would have lawyers on you in a heartbeat.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14943) 9 years ago
The old Barn Players site is the proposed site.


AKA the Shipley buffalo pasture.
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