Idaho is a land of hard-working and even harder-playing people. It's also a very religious state, where a Saturday morning knock on the door from a pair of sharp-dressed young men happens regularly.

When most people think of cowboy/cowgirl states, places like Montana, Wyoming, Texas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma probably enter into thought before most others. Having lived in southern Idaho for many years, the culture is alive and well based on my observations, and both cowboys and cowgirls can be found in every city from the southern desert to the panhandle.

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Years ago, the travel website Cowboy Lifestyle named Idaho in its top 10 for iconic states that proudly represent those who love denim, cowboy hats, and larger-than-life belt buckles. The Gem State is also a top three territory in the United States when it comes to Mormon missionaries, according to

Southern Idaho has many cattle farms, and it's not uncommon to see herds being driven by ranch hands throughout the region, and women are every bit as active in these types of roles as men in Idaho. The Pendleton Round-Up attracts a huge number of cowboys and cowgirls from the Northwestern U.S. and beyond each year.

The city of Boise is a hub for missionary work. Young men and women travel not just across the country but around the world spreading the message of their faith. This is why I say Idaho is a huge supporter of both the cowgirl and the missionary.

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