Groups Rally to Save ‘Christmas at the Cody’s’

Posted 1 year ago

By Scott Carlson

xmas-at-the-cody'sAn agreement has been reached between the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and local interested parties that ensures the beloved tradition of Christmas at the Cody’s will continue.

Due to the closure of the Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park between September 16 and May 1, the popular Christmas at the Cody’s event was in danger of being cancelled. Talks with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission were immediately initiated by the North Platte / Lincoln County Visitors Bureau. Individuals representing NP/LCVB, North Platte Area Chamber and Development, NEBRASKAland DAYS, Lincoln County Tourism Advisory Council, Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation and the City of North Platte came to an agreement last week with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission regarding the event.

In the past, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission covered all of the costs of hosting Christmas at the Cody’s, either out of the Ranch budget or from the event proceeds. The remaining income was then divided between the Ranch and the non-profit organizations decorating the various rooms. In 2013, the local community will be responsible for all of the costs associated with the event, including a payment to the Game and Parks Commission for $5,000 to cover payroll and utility expenses that will be incurred. Other expenses of the event will bring the entire cost to approximately $9,000.

The dates of the 2013 Christmas at the Cody’s will be December 19 through 22. Admission will be $8 for adults, children 12 and under free.Thursday December 19 is Military night, with service men and women being granted free admission with current military ID.

Sponsorships and room decorating will be opened up to for-profit businesses as well as non-profit organizations. For-profit businesses will be charged $250 to decorate a room. Non-profits can participate free of charge, but no proceeds from the event will be returned to them. People’s Choice voting jars will be provided in all the rooms, and organizations can keep the money received, or gift it to the Ranch. Because of the deferred maintenance that has been ongoing at Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park, it has been decided by the organizers that all of the proceeds should be earmarked for vital projects at the Ranch.

In addition to decorating various rooms, participants will be asked to provide a minimum of two volunteers to work two nights to cover the staffing needs.

More information, such as room availability and decorating times will be made available as time goes on.

If your business or organization is interested in sponsoring a room for Christmas at the Cody’s, you are encouraged to contact the North Platte / Lincoln County Visitors Bureau at 308-532-4729 or mclark@visitnorthplatte.com.