Get ready for another weekend of Echoes of the Trail cowboy fun June 12-15, 2014. That’s right; we will start a day early this year, with a trail ride on the Tucker Ranch! Besides the trail ride, there will be something for everyone: a cowboy poet and singer contest, a kids’ cowboy poetry contest, a pie baking contest, and plenty of the cowboy poets and balladeers you love, a chuck wagon, and a real, old fashioned wagon train, plus all sorts of wonderful western items for sale. And don’t forget Sunday morning Cowboy Church and chuck wagon breakfast.
This year, admission will be free into the lobby area where the vendors display their wonderful western wares, and for only $20, you can enjoy the many cowboy poets and singers who will compete and just plain entertain you Friday night and all day and evening Saturday, in the Danny and Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center Theater.
There will be a chuck wagon lunch on Saturday, June 14th, for a free will offering.
Those who choose to join the trail ride June 12th or June 13th will get a package deal that includes admission to the entertainment, a stall and bedding for their horses, a primitive camp site, a Thursday evening meal and a delicious Friday evening banquet. Click here for the entry forms.
If you are a cowboy poet or singer and want to compete for a Montana Silversmith buckle, just send a recording of your work to Echoes of the Trail, 2280 Hackberry Rd., Fort Scott, KS 66701 and let us know you want to enter the contest. Click here for contest rules. The Contest Committee will select from the entries ten cowboy poets and singers to compete Friday, June 13th. There will be two categories this year: cowboy poet and cowboy singer. The judges will select six contestants in each category, and there will be one Grand Champion plus buckles for runnerups in each category. The Grand Prize winner will be invited to perform at Echoes of the Trail next year.
Also on Saturday, we will auction the three winning pies and sell slices of the others, with proceeds going to our local 4-H clubs. Last year, the pies earned $312, and 4-H purchased new flags with the money!
Those of you who have attended Echoes of the Trail before will be asking whom you can expect to hear on Saturday, June 14th. Well, we have a talented slate for your listening and viewing pleasure, and they are Gerry Allen, Gail Burton, Harold Carpenter, Judy Coder, Richard Dunlap and D.J. Fry, Ron Ratliff, Abe Reddekopp, Cliff Sexton, Royce Smithey, and Steven Spalding.
Again, there will be an open microphone in the area where pie slices are served, and we hope to hear from many members of the Missouri Cowboy Poet Association. Last year, our own Johnny Kendrick even belted out a few tunes on the open mic!
Rev. Steven Spalding will again lead Cowboy Church Sunday morning at 9 a.m., out by the chuck wagon and wagon train, and he will also co-host a cowboy church concert on Sunday evening at the Faith Christian Center on Hwy 69. Dennis and Donna Williams and their faithful helpers Louise Crandall and her son Jim will serve up a great Sunday brunch after cowboy church.
As plans are firmed up, we will publish more information about the wagon train and its stopovers. If you are a horse person, you are welcome to ride along side the wagon train. The stopover before pulling into FSCC will again be the town of Cato.
Mark your calendars now, for a wonderful weekend of relaxing, horseback riding, listening to hilarious and heart wrenching tales about cowboy life, stomping your feet to great guitar tunes, fillin’ yur bellies with campfire grub, and havin’ a good visit with yur friends and neighbors.