The Preparation Begins

Howdy All,

The first 3 months of 2017 are coming to a close.  At the beginning of March, Rick and I took part in the local Wetaskiwin’s Farmers Curling Bonspiel.  We may not have come out on top, but we sure did have lots of fun.  We  appreciate all the organizers of this event.  They put many hours into making it a success.

curling 001


One of the prizes was a mini  “Team 23”  Chuckwagon.  Well this little fan was most ecstatic to have won it.  It became even more real when Rick had signed it for him.

Rick singing for fanlittle Moneau


As the season draws near, we wait in anticipation for the sun to shine and the snow to melt.  We don’t have tons of snow, but enough to hold us back a bit.  The horses are looking good, and have begun to shed their winter coats.

Horses in the pen springtime

Every day that goes by becomes history.  Whether it is 1 day, 10 days, 1 month, 10 years or 100 years. or more.  There is so much to be thankful for,  appreciate, and remember.  The Grande Prairie Museum contacted us, as they were putting together a Chuckwagon display to run throughout the year.  What they did, is use one of Rick’s Go-pro YouTube video’s from the drivers seat, to assist in making a reality feel of what the driver see’s from start to finish during a race.  You get to sit on a seat, hold some lines and pretend you are the one driving the team.  How exciting is that?  If your in the Grande Prairie area, be sure to stop in and have a look.



And while we are on the topic of history,  the Grande Prairie Stompede is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.  We thought it would be fitting to donate Rick’s dad’s, (the late Dave Lewis) racing chuckwagon.  What a great way to add history to the area.  Committee members and others, are hard at work restoring the weathered piece.  We can hardly wait to see the finished product.

IMG_8679[1]Dave Lewis Chuckwagon Restoring

Dave was a fierce competitor, yet a very quiet and humble kind of guy.  He took home 3 Calgary Stampede Championships in 1982, 1988 and 1990.  He married Rick’s mom, Joan Dorchester in 1969.

Dave Lewis Calgary Stampede

Talking about the Calgary Stampede, we look at it, as the kickoff of the Chuckwagon Season.   It was held in Calgary, this past Thursday March 23rd on the Stampede grounds.  It’s always an exciting event, as all the drivers, potential sponsors, committee members, friends and family come together to see what sponsor purchases what driver for the Biggest Outdoor Show on Earth.

Sue, Rod Phillips Rick

Sue, Rod , Rick

The afternoon/evening event comes and goes by so quickly.  But not before we get to chat with all the many friends we’ve made over the years.  Rod, is one of the Maverick’s group that sponsored us last year.  It was good to see him and all the others.  They have been consistent sponsor supporters for many years at the Calgary Stampede.

Rick Adrien Evan

Rick with Adriane & Evan

As there are many miles that separate all the 36 drivers on the Chuckwagon trail, we always are excited to see everyone.  Chatter is about how the family is doing, how the kids are growing, how much snow you have and what new ponies are in the lineup.  Evan Salmond and his wife Adriane hail all the way from Hudson Bay Saskatchewan.

Calgary Stampede Trophy Truck

The Aggregate Champion Truck

This Big Black Beauty was on display.  This is the GMC pickup truck to which the driver with the fastest aggregate time wins after 8 days of running at the Stampede.  Need to put this on our vision board!

Calgary Stampede Equine Award Winners

Equine Outfit of Excellence

A few years back, outrider Eddie Melville, put together one of the highest award achievements of the World Professional Chuckwagon Association circuit.  It was to honor the athletes of the game, the horses.  Not long after it came to fruition, the Calgary Stampede adopted the award.  At the auction, the previous years winners are presented with their winning trophy, a beautiful hand engraved display halter.  We were fortunate enough to have our Right Wheeler “Law” take the title last summer.  Other recipients were Chad Hardens Right Leader “Wild”, Jason Glass’s Left Leader “Smokey”, Mitch Sutherland’s Left Wheeler “Boomer”,  Vern Nolin’s Outriding Horse “Power” and John Walters Outriding Horse “Whitey”.  Such a prestigious award to receive.

Coy and 5 nights of Freddy

The Creator

Over the winter months, we’ve enjoyed many days with our grandkids.  Because they are at such different ages, we do so many different things.  Coy has quite the imagination when it comes to creating clay beings.  He also loves to draw, cut and paste.  His mind is always on the go.

Ryker in the straw

Little Man in the Straw

Our little Ryker turned 1 in February and is a going concern.  A bright and healthy boy keeps us all very busy.  He hasn’t quite learnt how to walk yet, but his crawling hasn’t slowed him down one bit.  This Nana is in seventh heaven spoiling the two of them.  After all…….that’s what we’re suppose to do, isn’t it?

Business Card frontBusiness Card Back

As the racing season draws near, mark your calendar as to where we will be.  We would love for you to come and see all the action live, up-close and personal.

From Home on the Ranch

Sue with Rick too

P.S.  The person who has lived the most is not the one with the most years, but the one with the richest experiences.

Jean Jacques Rousseau



13 thoughts on “The Preparation Begins

  1. So good to see your post, makes me even more anxious to get back to Alberta after being here in Az since Nov 1. Thanks for posting the schedule too. Marie.

    Sent from my iPad

    • Hello Marie
      So glad you are following along. Spring is here. Training is gonna start. Arizona is always nice to go to, but it is good to get back to Alberta. Safe travels home.

  2. Thank you for starting the new season with a catch up on your family and your thought provoking words of wisdom to live by. I can hardly wait for the next season to begin.
    Thank you and keep sharing Sue.
    Cheryl Watt (Adriane’s Mom)

    • Hello Cheryl
      Thank you for your message. Once January hits, I know the season is just around the corner and I need to get things done. So glad you enjoy the blog.

  3. Was pleased to see how well Rick did at the annual tarp sell here in Calgary. I miss being at the rodeo at the same time and watching some of the auction but things do move on. Look forward to seeing everyone on the chuckwagon trail. Have my tickets for Ponoka so will certainly look you up at that event but now that I’m retired may get to some of the earlier events this year. Lou

    • Hello Luella
      Good to hear from you. Yes the Calgary sale was good. We are happy. Glad to hear you will be in Ponoka again.

      Looking forward to seeing you there.


  4. Love reading all your posts
    I live in grande prairie love watching the chuckwagons
    It’s such a fun time
    I hope all goes well for Rick and the team and your self

    • Hello Cheryl
      Thank you for your message and following my blog. Excitement is in the air for spring training.

    • Hello Tylin
      There is definitly excitement in the air here for spring training. Just waiting for it to dry up a bit. The water is melting and running all over.
      I tried to email you, but it just keeps coming back for some reason. Please recheck your address, or email me at

  5. It’s good to see your blog is active again. We are looking forward to the 2017 chuckwagon season and can’t wait to see the action in Grande Prairie. This will be our first year back for many years. We will be cheering for Rick and also Riley – great to see a woman holding the reins! As you know, Tom worked with Dave and it will be nice to see Dave’s wagon – will it be at the Stompede or the museum? Good luck this year!

    • HI Cheryl
      Glad to see your excited to come out and see the races live. It will be good.
      I’m not sure where Dave’s chuckwagon will be displayed, but you may follow along on the Grande Prairie Stompede facebook page and they most likely make an announcement as to where it will be.
      See you down the trail!


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