Jody Klessens, Red Lodge Rodeo President, is expecting a “great” rodeo this year when the three-day event is held at the Home of Rodeo Champion Ground in Red Lodge, July 2-4. “We’ve got the same stock we’ve had for 21 years, the same contractor Brookman from Wolfpoint, who have been here for 21 years,” said Klessens. “The rodeo will be great. It always is and hasn’t disappointed us yet. We have 770 entries, which is a bit up from what they usually are.” Klessens says he always look forward to it.
“It’s a big gathering of the community and neighboring areas who all come to Red Lodge to celebrate and watch the event and it’s always a good time,” he said. “And we’ve got Burt Davis with a dog act. He’s our funny man this year.” These riders will be keen to emulate some of the great rodeo stars that have graced the Red Lodge ground such as the Greenough and Linderman families. In the Sports Illustrated 50 Greatest Montana Sports figures, there is at No. 20 Alice Greenough who won three national rodeo titles in 1930s and ‘40s; was the first inductee into Cowgirl Hall of Fame, in ‘75; and entered National Cowboy Hall of Fame in ‘83. At 24 is Deb Greenough, nephew of Alice Greenough who was 1993 world champion bareback rider. Coming in at 38 is Bill Linderman, top all-around cowboy in 1950 and ‘53; and won world titles in steer wrestling and bronc riding.
Along with the rodeo celebrations over the 4th of July week, the 84th Annual Home of Champions Rodeo Parade Grand Marshal will be 4 Star General Robert ‘Doc’ Foglesong. He was born and raised in Mingo County, W. V. Foglesong is President and Executive Director of the Appalachian Leadership and Education Foundation, an organization committed to finding, mentoring, and developing young men and women who will be the next generation of leadership across Appalachia. He has been designated by the President of the United States as the Co – Chairman of the Joint US – Russia Commission on POWs/MIAs. Currently, he’s Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO for Stark Aerospace Inc. and a Director on the Board of Michael Baker Corp. Foglesong was a four-star general in the United States Air Force. He flew fighters, was a senior leader in large organizations located around the globe, and worked directly with senior national leaders to include congressional members, cabinet members, and various heads of state, including our own. Foglesong received numerous awards for leadership. He has over 60 publications, and has an honorary Doctorate of Strategic Intelligence from the Joint Military Intelligence College and an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Pikeville College. He likes to run and operate a backhoe on his ranch in Montana.