Friday, May 27, 2005

What's the Matter with Kansas Cowboys in China?


Just to prove that anyone in the private sector can contribute to public diplomacy, the Wichita Business Journal says the Prairie Rose Wranglers have been invited to tour the People's Republic of China:

The Prairie Rose Wranglers are a singing group that is part of Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper, a popular tourist destination just outside of Wichita. Prairie Rose is partnering with Wichita's Village Travel & Tours to bring about 200 Kansans to China for the event, called the Great American Cowboy China Tour.

Basically, Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Supper is one of those endearing bits of Americana that happens to serve live, Western-themed entertainment along with dinner. The Wranglers have already played Carnegie Hall, so it's a natural next step for them to head overseas.

Expect Kansas congressmen to talk politics with their Chinese counterparts and businessmen to pitch Wichita's thriving aviation biz (Boeing, Bombardier/Learjet, Beechcraft and Cessna all have operations or headquarters there).

But I'd like to sit in just to hear the Wranglers sing "Cool Water" and "Tumbling Tumbleweeds" for their Chinese hosts.

[Again, thanks to John Brown's Public Diplomacy Review for the initial item.—PK]

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