Jackson’s own Vista 360° was invited by the U.S. Embassy in Bishkek to field an American Kok Boru team for the World Nomad Games in Kyrgyzstan. The team is competing this week against the best kok boru teams in the world and winning the respect and admiration of the crowds at the Games. Their success will be celebrated at a homecoming party in Jackson on September 14th at 155 Center Street. Learn about the Games from the team, see video and photos of the Games and shop at a pop-up store featuring Kyrgyz designers honored at the Games.
The celebration will take place from 5 pm - 9 pm, with a presentation by members of the team at 7pm.
About the Team
The American kok boru team of eight includes six members from Jackson Hole. They are Brendan Bryant, Creed Garnick, Sky Garnick, TJ Moulton, Max Snow and Scott Zimmerman. They are joined by two others, Brock Harris and Billy Magnussen, who also have experience riding in Wyoming and currently live in New York City. Our team of 8 players is competing against teams of 12 so they have to ride more and rest less than any other team during the hour-long game.
The American team arrived in Kyrgyzstan with almost no experience playing kok boru. While they had no opportunity to practice before their first game, they became a kok boru team the moment they rode onto the field for the first time.
Kok boru is a high contact sport played on horseback, demanding the same level of energy and skill required by American football. “Imagine playing your very first game of football against the Denver Broncs. Players on the other teams at the Games have been playing since childhood and are the best that their country has to offer.” said Candra Day, Executive Director of Vista 360° and team organizer.
The American Kok Boru team is winning the respect and admiration of the other players and the affection of the crowds. After their first game, they were told by the official Kyrgyz Kok Boru Association referees that they were impressed by their horsemanship and potential as a team and that.
You can follow there adventures over the next few days on instagram at #nomadcowboys
Embassy Invitation to Form a USA Kok Boru Team
When Vista 360°’s Candra Day received the invitation to participate in the Games, she immediately called Creed Garnick. Creed was born and raised on ranches in Moran and Dubois and rode bulls in the rodeo when he was a student at Jackson Hole High School. He’s a member of the Garnick family that has owned and operated the Jackson Hole Playhouse for more than thirty years.
Day asked Creed if he could recruit eight excellent horsemen to play kok boru in Kyrgyzstan. Within 24 hours, he had found a full team who were eager to play one of the most challenging games on the planet. “Creed is the captain of the team and keeps spirits high under extremely demanding circumstances,” said Day. “This venture could not have happened without him.” Vanessa Garnick Boshoff, Creed’s sister, immediately stepped in as co-producer for the tour.
About the Games
The World Nomad Games are the Olympics of this part of the world. Athletic events include kok boru, horse racing, wrestling and wrestling on horseback. There is also a huge cultural festival in the nearby mountains, with one thousand yurts gathered to exhibit traditional nomad culture. Museum-quality yurts are assembled for the Games in an unprecedented gathering. The American Kok Boru team is performing at the cultural festival as well, sharing cowboy music and poetry and demonstrating roping and other Western traditions.
Three of the designers which Vista 360° represents are being recognized as part of the cultural festival. Jumagul Sarieva, founder and leader of Chapan, has been selected to design and produce the official uniform of the Games. Aidai Asangulova, who makes beautiful silk and wool felt textiles, is represented at the festival, as is the handweaver and designer Gulmira Akmatova, who makes blankets and vests for Vista 360°.
Vista 360° invites everyone to meet America’s first Kok Boru team and learn more about the World Nomad Games on September 14th at 155 Center Street, across from the Chamber of Commerce office and Wells Fargo Town Square Branch from 5-9. For more information, vista360.org
For immediate release
September 5, 2016
For more information, contact:
Jenn Ford 512.277.5047