It took three cowboys to come up with the concept! (Go figure!) Seventeen years ago, the three Kanab cowboys, businessmen Robert Houston, Dennis Judd and Lyle Heyborne decided to create a special event, that has stood the test of finances, logistics and time! They were the organizers of the first Western Legends Roundup! Their sacrifice of personal labor, marketing expertise and personal finances have made the celebration what you see today.

“We wanted to give this area an economic boost on the weekend before Labor Day,” explained Mayor Robert Houston, of the original concept behind the event. “But first and foremost, we wanted to preserve western heritage and culture! That also included the area’s amazing western movie heritage.” Houston, Judd and Heyborne started, and initially funded, the event.

A great idea often has ‘road bumps!’ Lack of funding and volunteer burnout have often challenged Western Legends.

“Dennis Judd (who formerly owned Denny’s Wigwam) was the movie guy, Lyle was always the cowboy,” said Robert Houston. “I was ... well, I’m not sure what I was ... some of both! We just wanted to stress the western heritage of the area.”

The three Amigos’ dream still lives on 17 years later during Western Legends Roundup 2015 this weekend!

“People should realize that if they’ve ever watched western movies – they’ve already been here,” said Houston. “Come see Kanab in person!”

Speaking as the Mayor of Kanab, Houston said, “please enjoy the history – enjoy our heritage, make Kanab your travel home, and enjoy our western hospitality!”