On Friday, July 8, the legendary Calgary Stampede returns to Alberta with one hell of a catch. This year, ‘The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth’ will be led by American icon, actor, producer, director and musician Kevin Costner as this year’s Parade Marshal.
“I’ve just got to tell yah how nice it felt to be selected as the Parade Marshal,” Costner offers in his personal announcement. “You don’t see these kind of things coming, and I’m not sure what the list looked like but I’m glad I was on it. I have a lot of fond memories of being in Calgary. It’s made a big difference to me in my life, making Open Range and Let It Go there.”
Although he’s been a part of Hollywood for over 35 years, Yellowstone has given Kevin Costner his most iconic character yet. The role of a lifetime, John Dutton continues to cement Costner as the face of the Western genre.
Yet despite the show’s moniker as a ‘Modern Western’ or ‘Neo-Western,’ the true western culture of America – and North America at large – is still very much alive. Agricultural truths that feed our nation, and time-honored traditions like the Calgary Stampede, continue on now much as they did 100s of years ago.
From ‘Yellowstone’ to Calgary Stampede, Kevin Costner is the Western Icon
“The world focuses on Calgary, this thing that started a long time ago in celebrating Western heritage. So on July 8th, I’ll be there,” Costner adds. “I’m really honored to be a part of what [Calgary Stampede] has done for so long and carry on this tradition. See you at the parade, okay?”
As for the Calgary Stampede, the Western staple is a not-for-profit community organization that preserves and celebrates the western heritage, cultures and community spirit of North America. Over 2,500 passionate volunteers support the event every year in Alberta, Canada. Year-round events, programs and initiatives invest in youth, alongside supporting agricultural programs. Calgary Stampede moves to celebrate western culture, and make a lasting economic impact in the city, as well.
Costner is no stranger to the Calgary Stampede, either. He’s been to “The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth” in past years himself. And as he mentions, both Open Range and Let Him Go would film outside Calgary. These personal connections are sure to curve any critic of the star’s appointing as Parade Marshal.
Costner is also far from the first actor or figurehead to marshal the Calgary Stampede. Previous Parade Marshals include William Shatner (2014), Sam Elliott (1998), and Christopher Reeve (1993). Even Prince Charles, Prince of Wales was once Parade Marshall in 1977. In short, Yellowstone‘s Kevin Costner is now part of a remarkable legacy.
And with Yellowstone Season 5 in production alongside multiple spinoffs, his influence isn’t expiring any time soon.