New Film Theme display at the Casey Tibbs Rodeo Center

Farm Forum

A new Film Theme room display has been created at the Casey Tibbs Rodeo Center museum complete with photos and memorabilia of Casey Tibbs life when he was involved in the film industry as an actor, stunt man and producer. Also on display: the Floating Horses photos and costume from the upcoming movie!

Casey Tibbs’ celebrity life was filled with bucking broncs, practical jokes, beautiful women, gambling, movies, money, and the highs and lows typically affiliated with a life of fame. Deemed in the 1950’s as the greatest bronc rider in the nation, Tibbs’ charismatic personality and unmatched horse riding abilities thrust him into the limelight. He became the youngest person to capture the World Champion title at age 19, with eight more world titles to follow.

He was involved in scores of movies later on in his career. “It’s a little known fact, Casey Tibbs was John Wayne’s ‘right hand man’ in many of Wayne’s movies,” said Director Cindy Bahe. “Wayne utilized Tibbs’ cowboy background to assure the cowboys, horses and stock were realistic in nature.”

Though Tibbs died in 1990, his legacy continues in the rodeo world, and his decorated life captured the interest of South Dakota native Justin Koehler. Koehler, an independent film producer, wanted to preserve the memoirs of the world champion, knowing the research would not be an easy undertaking. While maintaining a full-time job during the day, Koehler has dedicated his personal time to the vision and creation of a documentary called “Floating Horses – The Life of Casey Tibbs,” something no other producer has accomplished.

“This is a human interest story about Casey,” said Koehler. “He was quickly thrown into fame and his life became a roller coaster of ups and downs. The film, which is two-thirds about his life and a third about riding, will make you laugh but it will also make you cry.”

There has been great anticipation by people waiting for arrival of this film in our community. Koehler wants to finish with a quality documentary. The exact release date “Floating Horses” will be showcased in the Fort Pierre/Pierre area.