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2nd Annual Chuckwagon Cookoff & Western Swing Festival Held in Davis
By Tourism Industry Partner
Down the winding road from award winning Arbuckle Wilderness, an exotic animal drive-thru park near world renowned Turner Falls, and just off Interstate 35 at the northern foot of the Arbuckle Mountains at Exit 51, is Arbuckle Event Center, the newest & brightest star in Arbuckle Country’s long list of tourist attractions.
Located about 1.5 hours from Oklahoma City and 2 hours from Dallas/Fort Worth, this family oriented facility spreads out over hundreds of oak covered hills, winding creeks, ponds, and scenic overlooks of the Washita River Valley.
The buildings include a beautiful indoor Event Center for wedding and special events; an immense patio with a 180º view of Murray County’s prettiest country; a fire pit and seating area for telling tall tales while warming by the campfire; 3 comfortable and fully equipped private cabins each with their own cowboy décor; and the most recent addition – a full blown Main Street of a real Western Town with stores, Sheriff’s office, bank and, of course, a Saloon and the local bank. The best part of this ongoing work in progress is that, though it is a real OLD WEST TOWN, there are modern conveniences.
An amphitheater is the focal for outdoor music and entertainment and traditional Indian dancers have their own spot up on the hill lighting up the town with traditional dancing.
On October 1 & 2 the Garrett family, owners of this remarkable vision, is holding their 2nd Annual Chuckwagon Cookoff & Western Swing Festival. Besides western swing bands, Indian dancers, General and other stores in the town, the venue promises to entertain the entire family; Mechanical Bull to Mutton Busting; Archery experts, dummy roping, Cowboys, Wild women and Indians, too. This year Northern Drum Young Buffalo will join colorful, native singers and dancers.
Plenty of sarsaparilla, root beer, and other beverages and food in the Belle Starr Saloon; plus the Original Arbuckle Coffee Company will have take home bags of their unique blend as well as a fresh cup to relax with in their store. Another store will house a saddle maker, who is also a performer; and the list goes on.
Along with the sanctioned Chuckwagon Cookoff tastings, there will also be turkey legs, sausage on a stick and the ever popular roasted ears of corn; plus other interesting food vendors.
Jantz Knives will have a complete display and demonstration in “The Bank”; The Dirt Road Diva Dress Shop will feature sassy girl stuff from corsets and cowboy boots to handcrafted jewelry from local artists Robin Criss-Prater and Susen Foster. The Art Gallery will showcase the photographic work of Black Swan Photography, the mosaic marvels of Robin Criss-Prater, and other area artists.
While the older folk are shopping and listening to storytellers and Cowboy Poets, there is plenty to keep the little guy busy. There will be open Mutton Bust’n and Dummy Roping competitions plus exciting mechanical bull riding.
Amish hickory rocking chairs line the boardwalk and patio, so there is always a place to rest your feet and watch the action, or just take in the scenery.
And dancing? Well, that’s what Western Swing is all about and this year’s headliners are well-known Johnny Bush and Fiddlin’ Frenchie Burke, along with A Bar Bunkhouse Band, the sweetheart of the PBR Miss Leann Hart and the Arbuckle House Band.
Gates open at 10am on Saturday; parking is free. Sunday morning starts with Cowboy Church at 9am followed by a cowboy breakfast. Check out www.arbuckleeventcenter.com and their Facebook page so you can keep up to date with all that’s going on. Call 580/369-7811 for lodging information or 580/224-1517 if you are interested in participating as a historic re-enactor or vendor.
This event is sponsored by The Arbuckle Mountain Foundation 501(c) 3; whose mission is “to throw open wide, without financial prejudice, the doors to a visual understanding of the social and geographic history of the Arbuckle Mountain and Washita River region.
Susen Foster/Greater Success
Public & Media Relations