Iron Saddle Ranch: Making A Name for Itself

Published on Wed, 08/23/2023 - 11:27am

Iron Saddle Ranch: Making A Name for Itself.

 By Maura Keller.

For more than 30 years, Roy Landers and his wife Beth have owned Landers Towing and Collision Centers in Salem, Illinois, working diligently to help owners of autos, RVs, semis, and trailers with all of their collision repair needs. About five years ago, the Landers recognized a gap in the new and used trailer retail market sector, and the rest, as they say, is history.

“For years we often repaired trailers and sold the newly repaired trailers to customers until we decided that we could actually start up our own trailer dealership, offering both new and used trailers to our customers,” says Beth Landers, who transitioned from her job as a full-time emergency room nurse to run the family’s Iron Saddle Ranch, which houses the company’s trailer dealership, farm and ranch equipment store, a clothing store, restaurant and rodeo facilities and arena. The 18,000-square-foot Iron Saddle Ranch facility is located on an 80-acre parcel of land that has become a beacon of sorts for customers looking for everything from brand new livestock trailers to animal feed to the latest Western apparel. The company’s steakhouse is a favorite of patrons who come from near and far to experience the burgers made from the Landers family’s own long-horned cattle.

One key facet of the Iron Saddle Ranch that has garnered much attention is their expansive inventory of trailers in their new trailer dealership.

“A few years ago, we were interested in purchasing a horse trailer and so we went to a dealership and they wouldn’t even talk to us,” Roy explains. “So we realized quickly we had the ability to do this ourselves – to establish a trailer dealership that could meet the needs of buyers. So I contacted SMC Trailers and, to make a long story short, we got the dealership started.” Today, Iron Saddle Ranch boasts seven trailer brands among their expansive inventory of trailers.

From Hillsboro stock combo trailers to Elite Trailers to SMC Trailers, Iron Saddle Ranch carries some of the most sought-after trailers on the market. In fact, the company has, on average, $4 million in trailer inventory available at any given moment. It is the Landers’ goal to have a solid supply of trailers on hand for customers to evaluate and purchase as needed.

The company’s diverse array of trailer options is intended to meet the needs of their customers who range from trail riders to ranchers to barrel racers.

“We also offer extensive customization options for these trailers in order to meet the specific needs of customers and what they are hauling and how they are using the equipment,” Roy says.

As Beth further explains, the team at the trailer dealership works closely with each customer to determine the ideal trailer. “These may be multipurpose trailers or stock trailers with living quarters. A lot of our customers are trail riders so they spend a week in a trailer with their family,” Beth says. “We help them find the best trailer that offers the living quarters they need. We ask about how much weight they’re hauling on the trailer. Do they haul cross country or remain fairly local? You have to accommodate for many factors and ask the right questions.”

For customers who may not be able to select their trailer in person, the Iron Saddle Ranch dealership team will ship its trailers near and far.

“We’ve even shipped a trailer all the way to Hawaii,” Roy says.

Of course, the Landers Towing and Collision Center is a key component of the Landers’ operation, offering towing and hauling needs 24/7.   

In addition to the trailer dealership, Iron Saddle Ranch offers a wealth of other ranching retail, event, and dining options within its expansive enterprise at their Salem, IL location. As a result of the Landers’ commitment to growing their company, they have truly created a “one-stop-shop” experience that customers have come to love during the last five years.

“People come from all over to experience what we have to offer,” says Caitlin Dunaway, marketing director at Iron Saddle Ranch. “We even have regular customers that live an hour or two away who come to our retail store because of all of the big Western brands that we carry. We carry everything from saddles and cinches to wound care and buckets and the things that you need to help care for your animals, especially horses.” The array of ranch equipment, including Priefert, that the company carries also is expansive. For apparel, the Iron Saddle Ranch store features apparel lines by Wrangler, Hooey, Cinch, Kimes Ranch, Justin Boots, and TwistedX. The ranch also offers horse feed from Edge Nutrition, which includes a protein blend that is specialized for Iron Saddle Ranch and its customers.

After shopping at the retail center, patrons can head over to the Iron Saddle Ranch bar and grill steakhouse, housed in the back part of the building, and enjoy a great selection of classic Western fare – from steaks to burgers to brisket. Nearly every day, the adjacent arena offers a series of music events that patrons to the ranch’s bar and grill can enjoy.

And when it’s time to get down to being even more entertained, Iron Saddle Ranch has patrons covered. Throughout the summer, visitors can enjoy everything from goat roping to barrel racing to rodeos and even “cowboy church.” This fall, the ranch is also hosting a preliminary pageant, Miss Iron Saddle Rodeo – that qualifies the winners to go on and compete at Miss Rodeo USA.

“There are a lot of things that are tied together that feed off of the trailer business,” Dunaway says. “We want people to really experience everything that we have to offer in one area.”

And their efforts are paying off as people come from all over the U.S. to experience the ranch, which has earned a name for itself throughout the ranching and agricultural community and has become a destination for people of all ages..

“We love meeting new people from all across the country and making it a smooth and easy process for them to buy a trailer,” says Beth. “They are not just our clients or customers, they are our family.”