The fun-loving Cy Scarborough - the backbone of the Bar D Wranglers, the Bar D Chuckwagon - is going to allow himself to have an even better time.
He's not retiring from singing to hundred of diners every summer evening, nor from the nonstop jokes he tells them, but he won't appear as often.
"Retiring's not a word in my vocabulary," he said Thursday. "But 'backing out' is. So is 'not doing so much' and 'not singing so loud.' An 82-year-old shouldn't be obligated for everything all the time. If I want to put together a comedy turn, I'll have time to do it."
Scarborough is the only remaining founder of the Bar D Chuckwagon, which sits on 50 acres on East Animas Road (Country Road 250). He started in 1969 with Jim Blanton, who died in 1975, and Roy "Buck" Teeter, who died in 2001. He learned his trade in his own cowboy dance band, then at the Flying W Chuckwagon in Colorado Springs where he started in 1953.
"After that, in 1969, we started one for ourselves," he said. "Even now, I'll still do most of the maintenance and run the backhoe."
Scarborough doesn't plan to replace himself in the effervescent singing group.
"There are singers and then there are entertainers," he said. "With a musician, you can enjoy them just as much on a good CD, but I'm proud that our musicians are both musicians and entertainers."
The current Wranglers are: 20-year veteran Gary Cook, the two-time winner of the National Flatpicking Championship; Matt Palmer, fiddle; Joel Racheff, singer and songwriter, and Levi Mullen, who sings, plays guitar and does imitations.
The saga started when, as a boy in Arkansas, Scarborough went to the movies on Saturday afternoon to watch Roy Rogers in black-and-white B features.
"After that, I always wanted to go out West and be a singing cowboy. That was my dream," he said.
Accordingly his parents ordered him a mail-order guitar so he could learn to play.
All these years later, Scarborough is a man who has more than realized his boyhood ambition.
These days, he sums it up with a laconic "It's a fun job. It's not boring."
The nightly applause he's enjoyed all these years says more than that.