The Vegas cowboy lineup continues, and as the official National Day of the Cowboy, it’s only fair that we celebrate today by highlighting cowboys from both ends of the cowboy culture interpretations and lifestyles.
The Political Cowboy:
Riding in the political arena, one Vegas cowboy jumps from politics to rodeos as he multi-tasks as a County Commissioner and a competitive steer wrestler.
Growing up in the saddle of a hand-me down horse, County Commissioner Tom Collins was involved in the local rodeo world throughout his years of schooling. With a gift of a bareback rigging and a bull rope, Collins practiced and progressed his
Coaching sports, and raising kids, rodeo took a back seat. Once his kids were grown and in college however, he roped a role in politics starting out in the legislature and recently, picked back up in the competitive rodeo world.
While simultaneously working the land as a politician, within the last year Collins has also started back up in competitive steer wrestling. “I’ve been to five or six rodeos in the last couple of months and I’m going to probably go to another 15 or 16 rodeos before the end of the year,” said Collins.
From his desk in the political arena to his 40-acre ranch in Logandale, the country mentality doesn’t alter for this Vegas cowboy.
“In politics you horse trade when you’re passing laws and when you’re doing zoning and changing things, and cowboys they horse trade,” said Collins “The horse trading in politics is very similar to the cowboy’s way of horse trading, an elected cowboy will stand by his principles and his convictions and still knows when he has to do some horse trading.”
The Eye-Candy Cowboy:
As a sunset burns in the background, standing silhouettes of five lone cowboys are spotted, with a country drawl they’re introduced, and for the next four minutes, it’s a wild ride of line dancing, a little rope-play and a lot of teasing, as these six-pack cowboys continue a shirtless performance.
“Our show is a fantasy show, it’s 75 minutes of full fantasy fulfillment and cowboys is just one of those aspects of fantasy that we bring to life for those women that come to the show. And we do it with that trademark iconic song, Save a Horse Ride a Cowboy and right there in itself kind of ties Chippendales with cowboys and that just brings it all together,” said dancer Jace Crispin.
For almost six years the Chippendales have been performing at the Rio Hotel and Casino, serving as the epitome of a Vegas-style cowboy.
“It’s Vegas definitely; it’s totally different here. It’s lights, it’s action, we’re ripping off our shirts, it’s very sexy cowboys not the Texas cowboy you think of being a big studly guy hitting the ranch with big ‘ol buckles, the cattle rancher,” said Chippendales dancer, Chaun Thomas. “We’re hitting them with some intense sexiness and that’s what Vegas Chippendales cowboys bring and it’s a different cowboy.”
“Our guys are the sexiest cowboys in Las Vegas,” said press representative, Michael Caprio. “We have two rules; 6 foot and 6 pack. So you throw a cowboy hat and a big ‘ol shiney belt buckle and cowboy boots on that and it’s like ‘and why haven’t I been here before’.”
The Urban Cowboy:
Four days a week they saddle up and ride the city streets in search for crime, chaos and crowds to tame.
“We do work in the city and we do some work that people would consider cowboy work, such as we ride horses for our job,” said Office Kelly Korb. “Our job more exemplifies an urban marshal type cowboy whereas we do police work.
“Las Vegas is a western town and history dictates that if you’re on a horse and you’re riding down the street, you’re a cowboy, and people consider us that. We’re police officers first and our horses are here to help us do the work too, we’re part of Metro and we just ride a horse as part of our job duties.”
The Las Vegas Metro mounted unit started in July 1998 as an effort to manage the expected crowds for New Years Eve, 2000. Through one year of research and proposal development the unit was approved.
“It started for crowd control and ever since then we’ve been building on to we do. We do patrolling, search and rescue, demos, work with mobile field force team, there’s a lot that we’ve added on,” said Korb.
With experience and horse centered backgrounds, Metro’s mounted unit police bring the cowboy culture to the city, patrolling the urban town on horseback.
“We’re the first thing people see on the strip when they drive into town, is us sitting on horseback,” said Korb.