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Stampede’s Concessions Feature Great History Of Help

Some of the unsung heroes of the Wolf Point Wild Horse Stampede are those volunteers that are on the stadium committee. They make sure your drinking and eating needs are met while watching top-notch rodeo action.

Current stadium committee members with many years of experience include Ted Rensvold with 43 years, Jeff Presser with 21 years and Stuart Conner with 13 years.

Suzy Will served on the committee for 15 years with her last year occurring about 10 years ago.

“We had a lot of fun,” Will said. “It was a lot of hard work though.”

She enjoyed being on the committee with one of her best friends, Therese Long.

“I was young and wanted to volunteer for my community,” Will said of why she became involved.

Marlene Mahlum, meanwhile, served on the committee for about 13 years including in the 1980s.

As a city office employee, she was recruited to volunteer because the Wolf Point Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture office was located in the same building at the time.

“I would take a week off from work, and it was our busy time,” Mahlum remembered. “My kids were young and they would play with the other kids in the rodeo grounds.”

She went on to become the chair of the stadium committee. She mentions receiving outstanding help from Rensvold, Will and Long among others.

“It takes a mountain of volunteers to run that place. It’s three days long,” Mahlum noted.

She stopped working in the concessions area when she became an EMT in 1991 and helped with the ambulance crew during the rodeo action.

Will explained that the committee’s work involves more than just the three days of the rodeo. When she was on the committee, she said they started to clean at the facility the Monday prior to the Stampede. Then, on that Tuesday, they were very busy cutting onions for hamburgers. The suppliers would come on Wednesday.

Back then, the third rodeo would occur on that Sunday afternoon.

“Oh my goodness, some of those Sunday afternoons were so hot,” Will remembered. “We would put wet towels on the cook’s necks.”

Mahlum added, “If it was going to get hot, it would get hot at Stampede.”

After the rodeo was completed, around 5 p.m., the volunteers stayed very busy performing a complete, final cleaning.

Will said the most popular items were beer and hamburgers. If the weather was too hot though, water became more in demand than beer.

“We had a lot of fond memories and fun times,” Will said.

“It was a lot of fun over the years,” Mahlum said.

She urged people to step up and help out during the busy time of Stampede week.

“It’s great for our community, but it does take a lot of volunteers,” Mahlum said.

If interested in volunteering in the concessions area, contact Jeff Presser at 406653-1310 or 406-650-1310.

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