Ramblin rangers photoThe Ramblin’ Rangers formed in October, 2006 as a way to present musical interpretive programs for visitors to Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in southern Utah.  The theme for these sing-along campfire programs centered around the life and times of the old-time cowboy, cattle drives, and the history of the chuck wagon.  They often expanded their programs to include other unsung heroes that made their living from the land, such as miners and loggers.  The interest from local communities led the Rangers to broaden their performances to include various festivals, restaurants, Senior Centers and other larger venues such as the annual Western Legends Festival in Kanab, UT, Everett Ruess Days in Escalante, UT, the Western Arts Festival at Grand Canyon, AZ, the Badger Clark Hometown Festival, and the annual Agricultural Banquet in Hot Springs, SD., the Buffalo Round-up Arts and Crafts Show at Custer State Park, and the Jimmy Driftwood Barn show in Mountain View, AR, the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame in Medora, ND along with various venues in South Dakota and Nebraska.

The duo consists of Bonnie Jo Exton, who plays guitar, banjo, and dulcimer and sings harmony, and Brad Exton who plays six and twelve-string guitar and sings lead vocals.  Both members have spent many years performing various types of music, such as rock, folk, country, traditional, and even orchestral, throughout the western states where they have lived. Bonnie received a Performing Arts Scholarship from Colorado State University and has studied music since the second grade, when she took up clarinet and piano. Brad is a self-taught musician with a keen ear for music who has written many of his own pieces.

Both Brad and Bonnie have worked for the National Park Service, US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and various state parks in the western United States. They have both served as Park Rangers, resource managers, and stewards of the land for more than 30 years. When they took their act on the road, it seemed appropriate to call their little duo, “The Ramblin’ Rangers”; the moniker seemed fitting so it stuck!