Special to the Times-Record
BISMARCK, ND - The North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame (NDCHF) finalized plans for the 2012 induction weekend June 22-23, in Medora, with special recognition programs and receptions to acknowledge the current (and past) inductees in to the Hall of Honorees of the NDCHF – Center of Western Heritage & Cultures: Native American, Ranching and Rodeo.
“The induction ceremony and recognition by the ND Cowboy Hall of Fame is just a small display of appreciation acknowledging the contributions given to establish and preserve North Dakota’s legendary western heritage and cowboy culture,” said Phil Baird, President, NDCHF board of directors. “This weekend culminates the lifetime achievements for these honorees; past and current.”
The weekend kicks off with a special reception recognizing the 2012 honorees that also includes a benefit dinner and social Friday night, June 22, at the NDCHF signature facility in Medora. Saturday afternoon will be the induction ceremony located at Tjaden Terrace overlooking the rugged North Dakota Badlands. Guest speaker for the induction ceremony will be Darrell Dorgan, award winning journalist and the first executive director of the NDCHF. The public is invited to participate in all the activities.
“Witnessing induction ceremony is indeed a special experience,” said Ray Morrell, NDCHF board member and event coordinator. “The stories told may be humorous, sometimes they are serious; but they are always from the heart of each inductee.”
Morrell stated several radio stations will broadcast Saturday’s induction ceremony live; crossing three states and two Canadian provinces.
A sellout crowd is expected for Friday night’s Honor the Honorees special reception. With only 250 tickets available, organizers request that guests call the Medora facility and purchase their tickets in advance. Ticket holders will also have special access to the Center of Western Heritage & Cultures that evening.
The Center continues its invitational art exhibition and sale titled “Cowboys and Indians –Alive & Well Today” through the summer. Also, on short-term loan from the National Firearms Museum collection until June 25, is the Walther PPK pistol used by Timothy Dalton as James Bond in “License to Kill”, the Colt pistol carried by Tom Selleck in his popular CBS TV series “Magnum P.I.” and Luke Skywalker’s light saber from Star Wars.
The North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame – Center of Western Heritage & Cultures: Native American, Ranching and Rodeo, in Medora, is the premier interpretive center for showcasing the history of Native Americans, ranching, rodeo and the western lifestyle of the plains and Badlands.
This facility presents the culture and legacy that is the character of the Great American West ensuring its resiliency will be available for future generations. The facility, named ND’s Tourist Attraction of the Year for 2007 and the Top American Cowboy Museum in 2010, is open daily from mid-May through mid-September from 10:00 am until 8:00 pm MDT and by appointment during the off-season. Its galleries and exhibits detail the history of the plains horse culture. The facility is also used for meetings, reunions, weddings and other events. Additional information can be found by logging on to www.northdakotacowboy.com  or www.facebook.com/northdakotacowboy .