Posts in category Press Release

A Magical Medora Christmas Tour Coming to 24 Communities Across the Region

Show returns for the fourth season, tickets on sale now

Medora, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation announced today the return of fan-favorite show, A Magical Medora Christmas! This year the show will travel to four states performing 30 shows in 24 communities. A Magical Medora Christmas features past and present stars of the Medora Musical. Starring in this year’s tour is former host of the Medora Musical and “Queen of the West”, Emily Walter, Broadway stars Jared Mason, and Job Christenson, musician Chad Willow, and the host of the show, Bill Sorensen bringing the spirit of Christmas to audiences through his gift of humor, magic and love. READ MORE »

First Ever “Medora Wish” to be Granted

Brand new endowment will help more families enjoy Historic Medora, funds first trip for recipient John Wright 

 

The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation is wonderfully-pleased to announce the first ever recipient of a fully sponsored trip to Medora, John Wright, will experience the Badlands and more this weekend, August 31 – September 2, thanks to a new fund created by TRMF supporters called The Medora Wish Endowment.

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“Cowboy Lyle” Glass Has Passed Away

Medora says good bye to a Badlands icon

 

(Medora, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation (TRMF) is sad to announce the passing of Cowboy Lyle Glass. He was 67.

 

Memorial details will be forthcoming as family and friends are notified of the passing of our adored Cowboy Lyle.

 

Lyle was born June 22, 1951. He left his hometown of Crookston, Minnesota in 1973 for the Badlands of North Dakota — and a small tourist town called Medora.

 

Lyle quickly established himself as a hardworking Horse Wrangler at the Medora Riding Stables and an indispensable part of the Medora Division of Gold Seal Company, and later, the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation family.

 

Lyle’s years of service to Medora and TRMF are highlighted by over 2,000 ghost rides in the Medora Musical — a  featured scene he made famous by descending a steep butte on horseback, guided only by a spotlight.

 

After suffering a life-threatening aneurysm in 2010, Lyle dismounted from his Medora Trail Riding horse but his presence in Medora only grew.

 

For guests to town, Lyle was the iconic presence you saw and felt everywhere — whether he was helping the Boy Scouts raise the colors of our nation, trotting through town atop his horse, Chocolate, or greeting families as they stepped off the escalator at the Medora Musical.

 

Today, thousands of people, from all corners of the nation, will forever remember him through personal pictures of their kids, their family, with the one and only, the iconic, Cowboy Lyle Glass.

 

Lyle was also a renowned wildlife photographer and expert on the horses that roam Theodore Roosevelt National Park, previously received a Governor’s Award as the Top Frontline Tourism Employee in North Dakota, and even had a candy store named for him in downtown Medora.

 

Lyle will be missed. We’ll remember him for his warm spirit, gentle ways, 45 years of service to the visitors of the Badlands and his unyielding love for Medora.

 

High-resolution photos of Cowboy Lyle Glass can be found here.

Photos of his photographic work can be seen here.

Inspired Women Magazine to host Elevate Conference in Medora Sept. 6 & 7

 

 

 

 

 

Medora Musical Variety Acts Selected, Kat Perkins Camp and Concert Return, Summer Concerts Announced

Four variety acts, three concerts and two music festivals bring world-class, nationally known entertainment to Medora and the Burning Hills Amphitheatre.

 

(Medora, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation (TRMF) is excited to announce the 2018 Medora Musical Variety Acts and summer concert lineup.

 

The 2018 Medora Musical will feature a new, “family” theme used to tell the story of Theodore Roosevelt and the American West. This year’s Featured Variety Acts will follow right along with that theme – bringing great, family-friendly variety entertainment to the second half of each night’s Medora Musical.

 

Three comedians — including notable returner, Kermit Apio — will be joined by a renowned jump rope acrobatic stunt team, Flight Crew — who received rave reviews and standing ovations during their time in Medora in 2016.

 

Guests can see the Medora Musical Featured Variety Acts during the dates below:

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2018 Cast of the Medora Musical

(Medora, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation (TRMF), in conjunction with StageWest Entertainment, is excited to announce the cast of the 2018 Medora Musical and that the Show’s theme will be about “family.”

 

Over four million people have seen the Medora Musical since first opening in 1965 – many visitors from around the region make it a family tradition to see the show each year.

 

However, the family tradition extends further than the guests who flock to the Burning Hills Amphitheatre each summer.

 

Back for his third year as Host of the Medora Musical, Chet Wollan grew up on the Badlands stage – first watching his father, Curt Wollan, produce the show (1987-2018) before joining the production for the first time as a four-year old doing rope tricks with Montie Montana.

 

Chet has grown into his role as host and again leads a very talented, professional cast in this year’s Medora Musical.

 

Curt, for his part, remembers his early years in Medora fondly, saying, “Little did I know that answering an ad in 1977 would have led to meeting my wife, Jane, and to the honor of fathering two very talented Burning Hills Singers — Chet and his sister, Lexie Wollan-Swenson.

 

“I love this show. It is so fun coming back to it year after year to tell timeless tales about Teddy Roosevelt, the Badlands and family values in compelling new ways.”

 

Former Bismarck Mayor, Bill Sorensen, will join Chet Wollan as co-host after a successful, four-state tour of A Magical Medora Christmas.

 

This will be Bill’s second season back as a kind of grandfatherly figure, helping his co-host tell the story of the Badlands and Medora.

 

Between Chet and Bill, this year’s show is sure to include a great mix of fan-favorite moments and humor – some scripted and others, well, not so much.

 

Each year some of the top stage talent in North Dakota audition for the Medora Musical. The competition is stiff and those selected compete against talent recruited from across the nation.

 

This year, three North Dakotans made the cast and are returning: Misti Koop, of Grand Forks; Taylor Leet, of Bismarck; and Alyssa Scott of Fargo. 

 

Koop and Leet pursued passion projects during the winter, while Scott and her boyfriend, Medora Musical lead guitarist, Adam Vogel, have been performing and recording in Nashville, TN.


Vocal powerhouse and veteran performer, Candice Lively-Wolllan, joins the cast and her husband, Chet, this year as well. Candice and Chet just finished performing in a National Tour of Ring of Fire together.


The comical and ever animated, Ken Quiricone, will return in his “comedic side-kick role” for his 7th year after performance stints in Atlanta, GA, and Pennsylvania.


Fans will be happy to know that six-year veteran of the Show, Kevin Korczynski, will be returning after working in Florida and Illinois.


Kevin had this to say about his return to the stage of the Medora Musical, “A large part of returning was simply missing Medora. It’s a one-of-a-kind professional contract and I missed the electricity on that epic stage.


“I also missed the people, onstage and off. Co-workers, friends for life, Medora family, and fans it’s all a huge part of every summer story. The joy on-stage and off makes for such a gratifying return.”


Other veteran professionals returning for 2018 include:

Jessica Bradish, whose professional credits include a National Tour in Pump Boys and Dinettes.


Christie Robinson — who’s one half of Medora’s newest Kids Show, Carl and Greta’s Cowboy Sing Along with returning Medora Musical band leader, Andrew Crowe.

 

And Dusin LaFleur, who has worked at the Crossroads Repertory and Grandstreet Theatres.

 

The three new Burning Hills Singers are Ben Massouras, John Woodruff and Benjamin Frankart. 

While over one thousand performers auditioned for the show at locations in North Dakota, Minnesota, Florida and Tennessee this year, for TRMF communications director, Justin Fisk, a cast full of returners is fitting with this year’s “Family” theme.


“Really, the theme can be traced directly to the people who come to the show – the Medora Musical has been a family tradition, for visitors and staff, since Harold and Sheila Schafer started the show in 1965. Today, you see families all summer long with two, three, even four generations coming together.


It seems like fate, too, for our production team to build the show around this theme, and then for the cast to come together in a way that almost feels like a big family reunion – albeit a really musically talented one!”


Fisk concluded, “It will be fun and exciting to see how such an epic story of TR and the Badlands can be told with the family theme, with such a talented cast who are themselves a lot like a family.”

Lead Roles of the Medora Musical

  • Chet Wollan  –  Host  –  “Cowboy Chet”
    Strawberry Plains, TN, by way of St. Anthony, MN — returning
  • Bill Sorensen  –  Co-Host  –  “Wild West Prestidigitator”
    Bismarck, ND — returning
  • Candice Lively-Wollan  –  Burning Hills Singer/Co-Host
    Strawberry Plains, TN — returning
  • Ken Quiricone  –  Burning Hills Singer/Co-Host
    Stratford, CT — returning
Burning Hills Singers
  • Jessica Bradish                   Des Moines, IA — returning
  • Benjamin Frankart              Republic, OH
  • Kevin Korczynski                 Bel Air, MD — returning
  • Misti Koop                           Grand Forks, ND – returning
  • Dustin LaFleur                     Lafayette, LA — returning
  • Taylor Leet                           Bismarck, ND — returning
  • Ben Massouras                   Phoenix, AZ
  • Christie Robinson                Bucksport, ME — returning
  • Alyssa Scott                         Fargo, ND — returning
  • Jon Woodruff                        White Bear Lake, MN
 Coal Diggers Band
  • Andrew Crowe, Fiddle           Franklinton, NC — returning
  • Brandon Fillette, Piano          Weddington, NC — returning
  • Junior Mercer, Steel Guitar    Sevierville, TN
  • Perry Orfanella, Bass            Carmel, NY — returning
  • Barry Smith, Drummer           Orlando, FL
  • Adam Vogel, Guitar                Melrose, MN — returning

Broadway in the Badlands 

All of the shows playing in Medora’s Old Town Hall Theater this summer, fall and winter season
 

(Medora, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation is excited to announce the shows visitors can look forward to this season at the Old Town Hall Theater, in downtown Medora.

This summer the Old Town Hall Theater will be host to four shows playing all week long.

READ MORE »

A Magical Medora Christmas Tour Dates and Times

(This announcement was for the 2017 tour of A Magical Medora Christmas. See 2018 Tour Dates and Information here.)

Four past and present Medora performers will entertain audiences during 28 shows, in 22 communities, across 4 states this Nov. & Dec.

The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation (TRMF) is pleased to announce that A Magical Medora Christmas variety show will tour this holiday season across North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, and Minnesota.

 

The family-friendly Christmas show will feature the musical talents of Emily Walter, Jared Mason, and Job Christenson, as well as the comedy and magic of Bill Sorensen.

Read on to see see tour dates and times!

READ MORE »

Medora to Unveil Life-Size Theodore Roosevelt Statue

(MEDORA, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation(TRMF) announced today that a bronze, life-size statue of Theodore Roosevelt will be unveiled in downtown Medora on Friday, October 27, to honor President Roosevelt, who was born on the same day in 1858.

 

A Press Conference and Statue Unveiling will be held:

  • Friday, October 27
  • 11:30am MDT
  • Downtown Medora, in front of the Old Town Hall Theater

 

Members of the public and media are invited to join the event to see the unveiling, hear remarks, and take photos with the life-size statue.  READ MORE »

Medora Announces 2017 Scholarship & Ambassador Award Winners

39 employees receive scholarships & awards, totaling $30,500

(MEDORA, ND) Today the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation(TRMF) announced the names of 39 employees, from 12 states and 4 countries, who were awarded 2017 scholarships and ambassador awards.

 

The scholarships, ranging from $1,000 to $1,500, are awarded annually through the Tjaden Education Assistance Program, named after the late TRMF President, Rod Tjaden. Scholarships go to employees currently pursuing undergraduate degrees. The ten, $500 TRMF ambassador awards are given to graduate students or non-college student TRMF employees. READ MORE »

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