Set amidst spectacular forests and mountain scenery, the narrow Red Lodge Valley has a history of coal mining, colorful and eccentric Old West characters, outdoor recreation, and rodeo royalty. Yes, rodeo royalty. This is the valley where Ben Greenough led pack trains through the steep mountains and across the lofty plateaus of the Beartooths for years, and his eight children grew up riding horses. Five of them participated in rodeos: Turk was named King of the Bronc Riders in 1935, and Alice and Marge rode both bulls and bucking broncos to win a wealth of championships around the world. The Greenoughs helped bring organized rodeo to Red Lodge and helped build an arena in 1929 for the locals who had been competing at the railroad stockyards since before the turn of the century.
Another local hero, Bill Linderman, added more titles to the town’s history, even winning the title of “World All- Around Champion” three times. His brother Bud won a world championship as well, and in their honor the Red Lodge rodeo was renamed “Home of Champions Rodeo.” Today the tradition continues with Alice’s great-nephew, Deb Greenough, continuing as a worldchampion bareback rider.
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