Wednesday, January 24, 2018

30 Years Ago Today: The Bunkhouse Stampede Pay-Per-View

by Dick Bourne
Mid-Atlantic Gateway 

Brian Rogers Collection
When I think of the Bunkhouse Stampede I usually think of the initial December events that Dusty Rhodes started in 1985 with Jim Crockett Promotions. Each year, the legendary Nelson Royal would invite us to sit down by the campfire and he would tell us about how disagreements were settled back in the old days of the bunkhouses, and how this translated to the new concept of the Bunkhouse Stampede.

The Bunkhouse Stampede was basically a battle royal with the added stipulations that you could come wearing whatever you wanted and bring all the foreign objects you wanted, too, if I remember correctly.

Even though the Stampede became a bit of a downer to fans as time went on (it only lasted three years) because Dusty Rhodes kept winning them all, they are still remembered fondly for the imagery and the memorabilia associated with them. My particular favorite image is of the buckle and the badge, seen above. That big Bunkhouse Stampede boot/trophy was pretty cool, too.

Here is a memorable promo by the "Bull of the Woods" Dusty Rhodes and a great shot of the Bunkhouse Stampede badge and boot:

The program had a cool cover, a simple shot of a cowboy hat with the new version of the NWA logo on the hatband.

J.W.'s Wrestling Collectables
Josh Watko at J.W.'s Wrestling Memorabilia web blog wrote about getting Dusty's autograph on the cover of that program, and I have to admit that made for one cool piece of memorabilia. Dusty had a great looking autograph anyway, and it worked perfectly on that cover.

Josh wrote the following in 2009:

Usually when I get a program signed, it's the beginning of a "project." A project consists of an item, usually a poster, magazine, program, book, or vhs/dvd cover or box, that you get signed by the stars who are featured on that particular item. When I purchased this program a few years ago, I knew immediately there was only one signature I wanted on it--"The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes.
You can read his full post here, including a wonderful photo of Josh with "the Dream" doing that famous million dollar smile.

The final Dusty Bunkhouse Stampede was a pay-per-view event when those were still somewhat rare, 30 years ago this month. There were a few oddball Bunkhouse Stampedes the next season, including a managers event, but no finals.

Rhodes won the steel cage match with Barbarian at Nassau Coliseum to take the Bunkhouse Stampede title for the 3rd straight year. 

Thanks to Brian Rogers.