High Noon logo
December, 2009 - Vol 1, Issue 11
In This Issue
Feature Story: Up in Smoke...When Your Collection Bites the Dust
Featured Photo: Pictorial View of Western Americana....Featuring Myron Beck
Linda's Feed Bag: Hats off to Holiday Cider!
Auction Tips: Bidding at the High Noon Auction
Collector News: Simple Memories that Drive the Future
Recommended Reading: Luis Ortega's Rawhide Artistry
Dealer Spotlight: Bill Reynolds, Proponent and Supporter of the Great American West
Bits & Pieces: Information and Updates for High Noon Show Dealers
Feature Story

Bob and Lora Sandroni
Up in Smoke...
When Your Collection Bites the Dust

By Bob Sandroni with help from
his treasured co-pilot and wife, Lora.

On October 22, 2007, my wife and I suffered the loss of our 7,500 square-foot home in Lake Arrowhead, California. In a few hours, our mountain sanctuary for 18 years, our family destination for holidays, birthdays and other milestones, and our showcase for our Western and Native American art disintegrated.

Gone were more than 1500 antique weapons, hundreds of salesman saddle samples, historic chaps and gun belts, museum quality Native American beadwork and oil paintings.

What can one learn from such a tragedy? A lot. What prevented this disheartening disaster from becoming an emotional and financial debacle?

Featured Photo by Myron Beck

Myron Beck Cowboy in Snow Photograph
Through his photos, award winning photographer Myron Beck (Los Angeles, CA) inspires us to dream and embrace the beauty that surrounds us in the people we see, the environments in which we thrive and the diverse cultures that enrich our lives.


Did You Know?
  1. The Poinsettia originally grew in Mexico, where it is also known as the 'Flower of the Holy Night'. Joel Poinsett first brought it to America in 1829.
  2. In 1836, Alabama was the first state to recognize Christmas as an official holiday. Oklahoma was the last, in 1907.
  3. Christmas trees are edible. Many parts of pines, spruces, and firs can be eaten. The needles are a good source of vitamin C. Pine nuts, or pine cones, are also a good source of nutrition.
HIgh Noon Auction Catalog

High Noon Auction Catalog
Only $30. Order your 2010 High Noon Auction Catalog today!

Click here for more information or to order.
High Noon Music Box
Ranch & Reata Radio

Empty Saddle

Bob Hopwood
1933 - 2009

Les Quick
1942 - 2009

Mervin Ringlero
1917 - 2009

Ron Smith
1947 - 2009

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Linda's Feed Bag
High Noon logo
Hats off to
Holiday Cider!

A festive choice for any cowboy or cowgirl's cocktail hour, this tangy beverage may be made with or without vodka. Our Smoke Signals theory for cooking is always, Keep tasting until it's just right!

Serves 4Glass of Holiday Cider

1/3 cup fresh cranberries
2 Tb sugar
1-1/2 cups fresh apple cider
2/3 cup chilled ginger ale
2 Tb fresh lemon juice
3-1/2 oz (1/4 cup plus 3 Tb) vodka if desired

Muddle (explanation below) the cranberries and sugar. Add the cider, ginger ale, lemon juice and alcohol. Divide over 4 glasses and serve chilled or over ice.

If you don't know how to muddle - it's easy because it's just a fancy term for crushing the fruit and sugar. Use a spoon or any hard utensil and squish the fresh fruit and sugar.

Cider means unfiltered apple juice. Fresh juice has the incomparable flavor but needs to be drunk within a day or two. When carbonated, sweet cider becomes a sparkling cigar. Cider pairs beautifully with cranberries, citrus and spices.  

Whether you're sitting outside a chuck wagon or at home in front of the hearth, this drink can cater to both children and adults, and hits the spot for the holidays! Enjoy!  

All of us here at High Noon toast to you and wish you and your families Happy Holidays!


Help us "Put on the Feed Bag!" Appetize us with your favorite cowboy cuisine. Send us a recipe or culinary creation - keeping the traditions of the American West alive is about the great food too! From ribs to rhubarb, campfire food to a great bowl of chili - we Wild West epicureans want to know.
Submissions welcome at SmokeSignals@highnoon.com.

Advertise in the High Noon 2010 Program
High Noon Web Directory

Calling all Dealers, www web graphic
Friends and

Be sure to send us your web address to be included in our Web Directory. Please tell us if you want to be listed as an artisan, a store, a dealer or collector. And please include our website (www.highnoon.com) on yours!

Check it out:

Auction Tips

Bidding at the High Noon Auction
January 30, 2010 at 5:00pm

Bidding at High Noon AuctionHigh Noon offers buyers several ways to bid:

On-Site Bidding: When you arrive at the Auction you will need to register in order to obtain a bidder number. We will need your name, address, phone number, email and driver's license or ID number. In addition, we require a credit card number (even if you do not plan to charge with it) or letter of credit from your bank and your signature. If the purchase is for the purpose of resale, we will need your resale number. When you wish to place a bid, please raise your hand or card so the auctioneer can see it. If you are the winning bidder, the auctioneer will record the number taken from your raised card after the bidding ends.

Absentee Bidding: You can bid on an item without attending our auction personally by submitting an "absentee bid". The bid is submitted on an item prior to the auction starting using the High Noon Absentee/Phone Bid Form available for download on our website.

Telephone Bidding: During the Auction a representative calls you just prior to the pieces coming up on the floor and represents your bids to the auctioneer during the sale. The bid is submitted on an item prior to the auction starting using the High Noon Absentee/Phone Bid Form available for download on our website.

Online Bidding: If you've never done live online bidding, this would be a good time to go to our Live Online Auction page and see how it's done. A small, additional surcharge for all online bidding will be added to your invoice by our online auction service provider.

Collector News

Simple Memories That Drive the Future

Family reminiscing around the dinner tableThere is a common thread that runs through the hearts and souls of all of us who embrace the traditions of the Western Lifestyle. Perhaps it's that old-fashioned and somewhat "corny" comfort zone of being personally involved with the history of our country, our families and the people who have built this great country. In the November 14, 2009 issue of the Wall Street Journal, a wonderful editorial piece was featured on a topic and word which seems to be disappearing from our lives. That word was "reminiscing."

Such a simple word that we take for granted but so powerful in its ability to use the past to evolve forward. For those of us over 40, we likely grew up spending time with family, hearing stories, listening to them reminisce, grandparents recounting their struggles through the depression, fathers recounting their tours in World War II, parents recounting the early years of their marriage - these were the conversations on the back porch, around the family Sunday dinner tables and the stories we listened to in the back seat of the car on those long weekend drives.

Do these exist anymore? How frightening to think children and young people growing up today aren't being given the opportunity to learn from the richness of reminiscing. Think about how much we know, or don't even realize we know, because of sitting like a fly on the wall absorbing these stories and legacies.

As we catapult into the world of tweeting and emailing, what happens to memories from interaction and those wonderful family drives? When do children get to sit down and talk to grandma and grandpa about their lives and world that came before?

We at High Noon encourage everyone to take a minute and read this wonderful story about the importance and power of reminiscing. We must remember the past to make the future better.

Read the Wall Street Journal article about the power of reminiscing.

Recommended Reading

Debuting at the High Noon 2010 Show in Mesa, Arizona! Special preview book signing with authors Chuck Stormes and Don Reeves!

Cover of Book on Luis OrtegaLuis Ortega's Rawhide Artistry: Braiding in the California Tradition
By Chuck Stormes and Don Reeves

An acclaimed rawhide braider of horse gear, Luis Ortega elevated his craft to collectible art and influenced a generation of gear makers. This book is the most comprehensive overview of his life, art, and career and the first book-length work on rawhide braiding in North America, charting changes in horse gear over five decades.

Chuck Stormes and Don Reeves introduce readers to an itinerant cowboy who strove for a level of craftsmanship and artistry above what the market expected-and to be the best in his field. Although grounded in the Spanish vaquero tradition, Ortega's work was shaped by his quest for excellence and an intuitive sense of how to fashion humble material into objects of lasting beauty. While mastering his art, he was uninterested in taking students and remained a private man who viewed his craft as a calling yet rarely sought attention even after his reputation was established.

More than a biography, the book is a richly illustrated overview of this expert braider's art. Some 100 illustrations, 70 in color, offer close-ups of Ortega's work that depict the intricacy of his reins, quirts, and other pieces. From eight-strand reatas to figure-eight hobbles, the beauty, functionality, and painstaking care of his output shine through in every piece.

This elegant volume allows readers to better understand the Hispanic foundations of the American cowboy as it portrays the work of a man recognized by the National Endowment for the Arts as a Master Traditional Artist. It will stand as the definitive work on Ortega and a tribute to his craft.

Meet the authors and have them sign your copy at the High Noon Show on January 30 and 31, 2010 in Mesa, Arizona!

Dealer Spotlight

This month, Smoke Signals talks with Bill Reynolds, proponent and supporter of the Great American West.

Bill Reyolds on his horseBill Reynolds
He "looks to the past to create the future..."

All of us who were at the High Noon Auction last February in Phoenix were no doubt taken by the warm and embracing speech given by Bill Reynolds who recounted the life and legacy of his father, John T Reynolds, whose life and work was devoted to ensuring that the integrity and traditions of the West remain alive. Perhaps his father was known as an ambassador for the Western lifestyle but today, William C (aka Bill) Reynolds has not only stepped into his father's shoes, but has taken those shoes (or, ahem, boots) to a new level for cultivating that legacy.

Bill's father taught him at an early age that "passion is the wood putty of life." Talk to Bill for just a few minutes, and his passion for the West and the people who drive that culture today is magnificent and infectious. His energy is unstoppable and his mission admirable.

Bill grew up in Los Angeles and spent a good deal of time as a boy with his grandfather who - in the early 1900s - ranched in Tucson where he worked side by side with the Papago Indians and came to quickly love and respect their culture. As a young man back in Los Angeles, Bill met Edward Bohlin, an opportunity he directly attributes to his father's position in the TV industry. While Bill recalls, "Bohlin could be a cranky fellow," he persisted in developing this relationship and through it, became deeply involved in the traditions of the American cowboy craft. So much so, that by the early 1990s, Bill and his father John bought the Bohlin Company. They eventually sold it but that experience catapulted Bill deeper into the world of the Western Lifestyle, which has become not only his work but his life.
The Cowboy Way Magazine
It was in the early 1990s that Bill met Robert Hartman whom he helped grow an ad base for Hartman's then groundbreaking Cowboys & Indians magazine, a publication that would bring to the forefront, the "high-end" world of the Western Lifestyle. Bill fulfilled the role of Associate Publisher at Cowboys & Indians from 2000 to 2007. It was then he was approached by the Paragon Foundation in New Mexico, whose sole mission is to support the true meaning of the Constitution and protect the right of those individuals who continue to sustain and create a living in the Western traditions of the cowboy against incredible odds. To that end, the Paragon Foundation, with Bill's energy behind them, launched The Cowboy Way magazine in the Fall of 2008, a stunning yet important quarterly publication that honors and supports the American Cowboy. Bill Reynolds is proud to be the editor of this magazine, which, in short order, has won national awards.

Bill Reynolds knows that the integrity and traditions of the American Cowboy have reached the hearts and souls of people across this planet. It's not region specific for Bill, but rather it's the culture of a people who, as single individuals, build a relationship with the land and the animals - and that influence is worldwide and world-embraced. The traditions of the Western American Cowboy and the Western American Lifestyle "make the world a smaller and much richer place."

Bill Reynolds, Proponent and Supporter of the Great American West, lives in Southern California with his beautiful family: his wife and two daughters.

In the News

Ron Smith

Ron SmithJust over a week ago, our beloved High Noon family member, Ron Smith, was tragically struck and killed in a car accident in Maricopa County. Ron was just 62 years old. A tire on his camper had blown and he was out on the highway clearing the debris from the road. At his side, in the cab, waiting for his return, was his favorite pal, dog Sheila. It was dark and an oncoming vehicle did not see him in the road and he was struck and killed instantly. Even more tragic, the driver of the vehicle was a retired firefighter. He immediately attempted to save Ron but to no avail. Upon hearing the news, long time friend Bud Callahan went to the scene where Sheila was found sad, but safe.

Ron's life was a reflection of the man whose integrity and tenacity will be remembered by all who knew him. A Vietnam veteran, he went on to befriend many including Indians from various Trading Posts in New Mexico. In the 1970s, Ron and his dad capitalized on the Squash Blossom craze. They saw an opportunity and struck a deal with May Department Stores to be their primary supplier to stores across the county. At one point, they had over 250 Indian jewelers making Squash Blossoms to fill their orders. They bought a private plane and would fly from city to city delivering and showing the jewelry at May Stores from Denver to Washington D C.

Following this adventure, Ron opened Adobe Walls in Colorado Springs. What started as a tiny shop grew to an over 10,000 square foot mall and social center for Indian and Western Collectors. In 2007, he opened Adobe Walls Trading Company in Florence, CO.

Ron was going to celebrate his 20th anniversary with High Noon in 2010, and he was really excited about it. He was going to have his first booth...a big 8x20 filled with showcases. It was such a big deal for him, that he wouldn't make any decisions, even about the paper color, without input from his friend, Bud. Mike Graham described Ron as the Guru or Hub of the Cowboy and Indian trading community here. His good humor and kindness will be missed by us all.

Ron leaves a daughter Trisha Smith and son Kerry Smith along with three grandchildren Tanner, Weston and Oakley. Our hearts ache with the family and all his friends.

Bits & Pieces

Photos of TheresaHigh Noon 2010 Dealer Update
from "T"

Dear High Noon Dealers,

Twas the month before the show, when all over my desk,
Was a huge pile o' papers, making a gigantic mess;
The 40 or so Rubbermaid tubs were filled with care,
Packing our entire office, to take from here to there;
Confirmation packets will be sent via mail,
The first week of January, away they will sail;
You can download all of the necessary tax forms for free,
From our beautiful new website, you'll find everything you need;
Remember while unloading on dealer set-up day,
That the porters only work for tips, so please remember to pay;
We're inviting early buyers in on dealer set-up day,
But the fire marshal says no one will enter without her final approval, no way;
So please hurry, as fast as you can, to unload your merchandise and clear the aisles,
So that she will allow in all of those beautiful early buyers with smiles.

Happy Holidays to all...we'll see you in January!


Upcoming Events
NOW thru January 03, 2010  Arte en la Charrerķa: The Artisanship of Mexican Equestrian Culture
National Cowboy Museum, Oklahoma City, OK

NOW thru January 10, 2010   
Charles M. Russell Retrospective  Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO
NOW thru January 10, 2010  
American Legacy: Our National Parks Plein Air Painters of America
The Haggin Museum, Stockton, CA
NOW thru May 30, 2010  The Art of Native American Basketry: A Living Tradition Exhibit  Autry National Center, Los Angeles, CA
January 16-18, 2010  Winter Storytelling Festival: Sharing Our Stories  National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, DC
January 30-31, 2010   20th Annual High Noon Show & Auction  Mesa, AZ
February 12 thru September 6, 2010  Georgia O'Keefe and the Faraway: Nature and Image Exhibit 
Cowgirl Hall of Fame, Ft. Worth, TX

February 25-28, 2010
   10th Annual Saddle Up! (Western Musicians & Cowboy Poetry)  Pigeon Forge, TN
March 2-21, 2010  Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo  Houston, TX
March 12-14, 2010 
Palm Springs Wild West Fest  Downtown Palm Springs, CA
April 22-25, 2010 
Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival  Santa Clarita, CA
July 24, 2010
   National Day of the Cowboy  Ft. Worth, TX

Send event submissions to SmokeSignals@highnoon.com

Don't Fret About the Future - Invest in the Past!

High Noon Western Americana
PH 310.202.9010  |  FAX 310.202.9011
Newsletter Submissions: smokesignals@highnoon.com
Information: info@highnoon.com  |  www.highnoon.com

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Send us a Smoke Signal

Smoke Signals is for and about all of the wonderful people in our High Noon family. If you have news you want to share, hot tips on what's going on in the Western Americana world or just a suggestion of something you'd like to see us cover, send us an email at smokesignals@highnoon.com


Chief Publisher: High Noon Western Americana
Chief Editor: Linda Kohn Sherwood
Chief Art Director: Robin Ireland, Ireland Graphic Design
Chief Graphic Designer: Curtis Hill, Art Direction Services
Chief Writer: Jayne Skeff, JSLA Media Solutions