Ranch Life Learning

The Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center

Experience the real West at this 27-acre museum and outdoor historical park... (read more)

Ranch Life Books

The National Ranching Heritage Center is proud to partner with author... (read more)

Hank the Cowdog Podcast

“It’s me again, Hank the Cowdog!” — this opening statement has been the start of... (read more)

More than forty years ago, the doors of the National Ranching Heritage Center (NRHC) opened for the first time. The mission was clear: preserve and bring to life the mystique of early ranch life in the American Southwest. Since the doors opened on July 4, 1976, hundreds of thousands of people have come through the museum and historic park. The NRHC is now recognized as the No. 1 visitor attraction in Lubbock. We constantly search for ways to enrich our visitors’ experiences and increase our public exposure. We have developed a plan to substantially enrich the experience of all who walk through our doors through the Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center.

The Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center is an indoor and outdoor comprehensive learning experience designed to be an educational resource for visitors from all sectors of life. It provides an accurate, adult-level ranch life experience in a format that will enrich the lives of visitors of all ages through the character of everyone’s friend, Hank the Cowdog.

With Hank as your guide, you can explore what life on Hank’s ranch is like. Indoor exhibits provide windows into aspects of modern ranching. You will walk away with a greater knowledge of the ranching industry and its impact on your daily life. Each exhibit highlights the science, technology, common sense, values and grit it takes to be a modern-day rancher. Outdoor exhibits  bring Hank’s M-Cross ranch to life! You can explore a half-acre of exhibits and natural area focused on natural resources, wildlife, ranch nutrition, cowboys and horses, ranch equipment, and ranch family responsibilities. An outdoor amphitheater provides space for programmed events by industry professionals and NRHC staff.

To learn more about the backstory of the Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center and Hank the Cowdog’s involvement, hear from Julie Hodges, NRHC Helen DeVitt Jones Endowed Director of Education in the video below.

Construction has commenced and the vision is coming to life! The National Ranching Heritage Center is joining with donors like you to dramatically change the educational opportunities available to the public about ranching.

Jennifer Workman with the NRHC is available to help you explore opportunities to get involved and contribute.You can reach her by email at jennwork@ttu.edu and by phone at (806) 834-4120.

Donate to the Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center

To learn more about the Cash Family Ranch Life Learning Center, contact Julie Hodges at 806-742-0498.

Ranch Life Books

The National Ranching Heritage Center is proud to partner with author John R. Erickson in a five-book Ranch Life Learning series that explains ranch life through the humorous voice of Hank the Cowdog. These books are written to engage students in learning about ranching and to serve as a resource book for science and social studies classes.

Questions about using Ranch Life Activities? Contact Julie Hodges:

Email Julie!

Want a paperback version?

All books of the series can be purchased for $6.99 at Cogdell’s General Store inside the NRHC, or you can order from Maverick Books. All books are also available on Amazon.

Generous gifts from George Clay, the Don Kay Clay Cash Foundation, and Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo provided for publication and donation of the  books to area students. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the books are donated to NRHC Education efforts.

If you would like to purchase Ranch Life books in quantities of 100 or more, please download this order form:

Ranch Life Books Order Form

Hank the Cowdog Podcast

Listen and Learn!

“It’s me again, Hank the Cowdog!” — this opening statement has been the start of over 74 children’s books in an ongoing series by John R. Erickson which has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide. Now, that very same line will open a brand-new podcast series starring Matthew McConaughey as none other than…”Hank the Cowdog.”

From Tri-State Pictures, HTC Productions and QCODE, “Hank the Cowdog” is written, directed and executive produced by Jeff Nichols (SHOTGUN STORIES, TAKE SHELTER, MUD, MIDNIGHT SPECIAL and LOVING) and stars McConaughey as HANK who will also serve as an executive producer. The 5-episode season, which will also feature original musical numbers, will launch on September 14 through QCODE and be available on Apple Podcasts and all major podcast platforms.

The pairing reunites the two who collaborated on the 2012 film, MUD. McConaughey is joined by a fantastic supporting cast which includes Jesse Plemons, Cynthia Erivo, Kirsten Dunst, Leslie Jordan, Joel Edgerton, Scoot McNairy, Michael Shannon and John R. Erickson. Nichols and McConaughey are joined by executive producers Sarah Green & Brian Kavanaugh-Jones of Tri-State Pictures, Mark Erickson of HTC Productions and Rob Herting of QCODE.

The National Ranching Heritage Center at Texas Tech University has partnered with the Hank the Cowdog podcast family to create educational material for each episode of the podcast. These activities are aligned with national curriculum standards and feature activities that focus on literacy, science, STEM, and social and emotional well-being.

 Listen now on Apple Podcasts!

Launch @ApplePodcasts

Learning with podcast activities is a hands-on way to engage listeners and can be followed up with the Ranch Life Learning with Hank the Cowdog book series and educational activities.