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OETA Honored with Western Heritage Award®
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OETA will be awarded a Western Heritage Award® in the category of Best Western Lifestyle Program for its production of Cow Town. The half-hour documentary highlights the perilous journey of the cowboys on the historic Chisolm Trail, the demand for a reliable source of food during a time of change and the beginning of Oklahoma’s City’s stockyards. The program was produced by Robert Burch and edited by Ryan Lorg as a part of OETA’s Oklahoma history series, Back in Time.

Cow Town tells the rich story of cowboys and their contributions to Oklahoma’s economy and culture,” says Polly Anderson, executive director. “Robert and Ryan are excellent storytellers—they did a great job of depicting a brief, but vital part of Oklahoma’s history. This is a documentary that all Oklahomans should be proud of. I also want to congratulate Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan who are being recognized with a Western Heritage Award® for Best Documentary for their work on Country Music, which premiered on OETA in September.”

Lorg mentioned that when editing the program, “We wanted to explore the lives of real cowboys that drove their cattle through Oklahoma on the Chisolm Trail—not the Hollywood version we see in movies and TV shows. These young men laid the foundation for the booming beef industry that's become a cornerstone of Oklahoma's economy.”

Cow Town features interviews with Dr. Bob Blackburn, executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society, Stecey Kramer Moore, executive director of Chisolm Trail Heritage Center, Jason Harris, director of Chisolm Trail Museum, and Kelly Payne with the Oklahoma National Stockyards.

Cow Town is available to stream for free at

Presented by celebrity hosts, the Western Heritage Awards® is a black-tie event honoring individuals who have made significant contributions to Western heritage through creative works, as well as inductees into the Hall of Great Western Performers, Hall of Great Westerners, Chester A. Reynolds Memorial Award and Lifetime Achievement Award recipients. The Western Heritage Awards® are presented by the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum and are celebrating their 60th anniversary. The event will be held April 17-18 2020 at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum.