CBC Digital Archives

Breakfast in the buff

For 10 days in July, mild-mannered Calgarians don skin-tight wranglers, big shiny belts and even bigger Stetsons and go into "Stampede mode." Not much work gets done as cowboys, Indian princesses, ferris wheels and pancake breakfasts take hold of the city. From its humble beginnings in 1912 to the ongoing controversy over chuckwagon races, the Calgary Exhibition & Stampede continues to be Canada's annual salute to the good old days of the Wild West.

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In 1923, when "Wildhorse Jack" Morton began dishing out flapjacks from the back of his chuckwagon, a Calgary Stampede tradition was born. The pancake breakfasts, held every day at various locations throughout the 10-day festival, are as integral to the Stampede as the parade, cowboy hats and calf roping.

But even Wildhorse Jack would have cocked his eye at this latest twist to an old tradition -- a clothing-optional Stampede breakfast. Standing dangerously close to a hot griddle, the nude organizer tells CBC Television that it's a good opportunity for their group to "get a little bit of exposure."
• Over the years many events were introduced to the Stampede with different degrees of success. Some of these include auto polo (1920), promoted as the "climax of the dangerous sports," ski jumping off the grandstand (1921), and Roman races (1919) where one rider races around the track on two horses.
Medium: Television
Program: Calgary Newshour
Broadcast Date: July 14, 1997
Duration: 0:34

Last updated: July 6, 2012

Page consulted on September 10, 2014

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