MERRIMACK, NH: Lone Star Ranch, Reeds Ferry - Pennant

The Lone Star Ranch, located in Reeds Ferry, New Hampshire, was opened in 1938 by country radio singer, Baron West. Baron and his friends built the ranch and opened it, featuring country bands and entertainers. In 1940, "Sagebrush" Jim Marshall and his band operated the ranch. In the early days, Elton Britt, Georgia Mae and other New England performers appeared on Sunday afternoons during the summer months. Jim Marshall featured acts from the Grand Ole Opry (, natch), movie stars including the Hoosier Hotshots, and the Sons of the Pioneers. Jim Marshall died in a car accident. In 1942, Ken Lane and his band from Lynn, Mass. and Ken McKenzie of Portland, Maine kept the ranch open. In 1944, the Bar X Boys from Gardner, Mass. and the Circle C Boys and others helped to run the ranch. In 1945, the ranch closed due to World War II. [Evidently in 1946,] Gene LaVerne, popular radio personality and country entertainer, took charge of the Lone Star Ranch. His band was known as The Lone Star Ranch Gang. Under Gene's guidance, the ranch grew in popularity. It featured two concerts plus an open jamboree show every Sunday afternoon. Featured performers included acts such as Roy Acuff, Kitty Wells, and Ernest Tubbs from the Grand Ole Opry, as well as WWVA Jamboree U.S.A. acts from Wheeling, W. Va. Favorites were Yodeling Kenny Roberts, Doc Williams ... read more