He is truly an all-around cowboy.
There are cowboys who compete in all eight sanctioned contest events at rodeos, break and train their own horses, assist with cattle roundups, and even participate in other horse related competitions. Yes, they’re all-around cowboys.
This one’s entered successfully in some such rodeo action, but they’re not his most given forte to rate the distinctive versatility title.
Saturday afternoon was calm, and like many tied to ranch life, he was burning native pastures.
Assisting in cattle operations are regular routine, he’s been a top contender in team penning events, helped form a sheriff’s posse, his family rides horses, too, and he can frequently be seen riding his favorite horse, Cooper, on roundups, over the trails and just for pleasure.
Perhaps, today, this cowboy is most widely recognized for that part of his diversity as announcer at high school, Christian Rodeo Youth Association and other amateur rodeo events, or even supplying the sound system and background action music for one of several Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association-sanctioned competitions throughout the Midwest, and often preaching cowboy church services there, too.
A former farm director, disc jockey and marketing consultant for several different radio stations, a past traffic coordinator for Topeka’s Farmland Foods, active auctioneer, talented musician playing guitar and several brass instruments, a funeral director, head of school security at Shawnee Heights USD 450, the husband and father is perhaps best known today as pastor of Great Plains Episcopal Area of the United Methodist Church serving Alma and Paxico/McFarland.
Appropriately his business card’s titled Scheideman & Associates; certainly Kyle Scheideman has lots of associates. And, catching up with this all-around cowboy, or whatever hat he’s wearing, or title one wants to give him at the task and time desired, is not easy.
Let’s just call him Pastor Scheideman this time, or Reverend, or Cowboy Preacher, whichever, but the Berryton resident was en route from his small family ranch for the first of four sermons Sunday.
“I’m on my way to Alma,” Scheideman, 60, said, when we located him on his cell phone after several attempts a day earlier.
“I preach at Alma, then go to Paxico, and back to Alma again, plus I have an afternoon service at the Alma Manor,” he said, just as the phone connection broke down in the Flint Hills near Maple Hill.
Fortunately, Scheideman admitted giving the same sermon with slight variation all four times. And, likely the reason the diversified cowboy-preacher wouldn’t take our call Saturday night was because the Sunday presentation was being prepared, although he never admitted it.
A cowboy from the start, Scheideman grew up in western Scott County where his family operated a small feed yard. “I attended Colby Junior College, studying agriculture with emphasis on feedlot management,” he said.
Then, Scheideman came east, completing a bachelor of business degree in marketing from Baker University, and also taking small business administration courses at Washburn University in Topeka.
A natural speaker, obviously, Scheideman said, “I actually give credit to my public speaking ability as a result of competing in FFA contests, along with high school forensics and debate.
“I worked for radio stations as a farm director, on-air personality, on-air news block anchor and marketing consultant,” noted Scheideman, listing KBUF, KIUL/KWKR, KDVV, WREN, KTPK, 580 WIBW, and The BIG 94 Country.
“Due to my interest and knowledge of music and sound, I got started providing sound systems and backup music for professional rodeo announcer Justin McKee,” Scheideman reflected.
“I love music and try to mix the sounds, string music during the timed events, more hip-hop, and rock music during the rough stock, orchestra music for opening ceremonies, and the like, ” he qualified.
His familiarity and attraction to the sport of rodeo soon had Scheideman in demand to announce rodeos. “I have been announcing rodeos for the Kansas High School Rodeo Association since attending Sam Howry’s Rodeo Academy in Edmond, Oklahoma, in 1994,” said Scheideman, who has announced the Kansas High School Rodeo Finals three times.
Announcing a half dozen high school rodeos annually, Scheideman said,” This is my first year being asked to announce rodeos for the Christian Youth Rodeo Association (CYRA), with several approaching performances starting in April.”
“Justin McKee, Hap Larson, and Tim Fuller have my utmost gratitude for helping me begin my rodeo announcing, sound and public speaking adventures,” Scheideman credited.
The two-section Shawnee County acreage where Scheideman headquarters is his wife Sherri’s home place. His father-in-law was the late Dick Stous, and the land is now owned by his mother-in-law Jeanie (Stous) Lutz.
“I would say that my wife’s farm-ranch is a family operation involving Jeanie, my brother-in-law Kevin Stous and my wife, Sherri. I do help out with the cattle and some other work wherever and whenever I have the opportunity,” Scheideman said.
The Scheidemans’ daughter, Abby, is involved in many activities with a strong attraction for being on the back of a horse. Scheideman also has three grown children: Stacy, Peggy and Scott.
Obviously, as diverse as the “all-around cowboy” is, finding time to get everything in his schedule becomes complicated.
“Because I was involved in so many activities and had been on the radio, in 1998 the Methodist Church district superintendent asked me if I’d be interested in helping out as a church pastor,” Scheideman remembered.
“I had always been strong in my faith. But, I was still a bit taken back at first when I got that request. Then, I decided it must be ‘The Call.’
“That’s the way I got into the ministry. I began my ministry with an assignment to Soldier, Buck Grove and Circleville United Methodist Churches. Then, I served several years at the Wakarusa Presbyterian Church, and the last five years have been at Alma and Paxico-McFarland United Methodist Churches,” related Scheideman, who is still completing the Course of Study at the St. Paul School of Theology in Kansas City.
His pastor ship has been the guiding for some additional endeavors, including serving as a part time funeral director for Penwell-Gabel Funeral Homes.
No slowdown in sight for the Topeka Chamber of Commerce member who conducts cowboy church at other functions including county fairs, and there are visions of a Flint Hills Cowboy/Country Church.
How does this entire all-around cowboy come together? “I was saved when I was 15-years- old, but I never thought I’d be a preacher, really. It is an amazing story. It has to be divine. My life has been guided by God’s hand,” Scheideman evaluated.
“When people ask my wife what I do for a living, she is often at a loss. I am a jack at all, master probably at nothing. The trail has been rocky at times, more times than not, but I have always liked to be around all types of people, and have always been up to a challenge.
“I learn something new every day. This diversity helps me in my ministry and as a funeral director to relate to others, as I have walked in many moccasins, or boots I should probably say, and worn many hats,” Scheideman concluded.