Cowboy musician Rob Dinwoodie (left)

Cowboy musician Rob Dinwoodie (left)

Cowboy show delves into history at O’Keefe Ranch

This summer, head to O'Keefe Ranch for the annual Cowboy Dinner Show, which features music and history while bringing the old west to life

“There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.”

Visitors to Historic O’Keefe Ranch will soon see what  this poem has to do with cowboys, cattle drives and the origin of the B.C. west, when the ranch once again stages its fifth annual Cowboy Dinner Show.

A new theatrical piece has been incorporated into this year’s show, and is a collaborative production effort between cowboy singer-songwriter Rob Dinwoodie and Jason Armstrong, founder of Agape Theatre Company.

“Without giving too much away, we have linked gold fields and cattle drives into the show in a way our audiences won’t forget,” said Dinwoodie, producer of the popular event. “What we wanted to do was have guests experience some of the west come alive. That’s what will happen as actors share a role in telling the story of the west.”

The new show includes new songs, stories and drama, plus attendees can enjoy a steak dinner with all the fixings, provided by Cattlemen’s Club Restaurant.

Dinwoodie is joined once again by author, historian and cowboy poet Ken Mather, who has just published a new book, Frontier Cowboys and the Great Divide, the third in a series of the cowboy and ranching history.

“Ken’s ability to recite cowboy poetry is remarkable,” said Dinwoodie. “He’ll make you laugh and wipe a tear from your eye all in one poem.”

Joining the fun is Dinwoodie’s stage band, made up of the popular multi-instrumentalist Dixon Zalit and smooth harmonies and bass playing by Kevin Bader.

“If you ever wanted to learn how to yodel, Kevin will teach you in one lesson,” laughed Dinwoodie.

Zalit again will captivate guests with his Spanish guitar, mandolin, and electric guitar as he accompanies the band on stage and around the campfire.

“You can almost hear the cattle lowing as the evening winds down under the stars, singing songs around a campfire,” said Dinwoodie, who encourages those who have attended in the past to come and see the new show with friends and tourists to the Okanagan.

“Where else can you ride a stagecoach, learn how to rope and yodel, eat steak, listen to music, poetry and drama all in one show?”

Those dressed like a cowboy or cowgirl  can qualify to win a Sunday brunch at the Cattlemen’s Club Restaurant.

The Cowboy Dinner Show runs every Friday during July and August at 6:30 p.m. Tickets can be reserved online at okeeferanch.com or call 250-542-7868.