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Saddle up for the Cowboy Festival

Posted: April 13, 2012 6:00 a.m.
Updated: April 13, 2012 6:00 a.m.

The cowboys are a-comin’.

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It's almost Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival time! It's perhaps my favorite time of the year in the Santa Clarita Valley. I can't think of anything I enjoy more than Cowboy Cobbler, the music of Dave Stamey and shopping for new a new cowgirl hat and other Western goodies.

This year's Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival (April 19 - 22) has all the makings of a true classic. Not only will Newhall resident Joel Cox, the Oscar-winning film editor for Clint Eastwood and the film "Unforgiven," be inducted into the Western Walk of Stars, but so will the late Western icon Glenn Ford ("The Fastest Gun Alive," "3:10 to Yuma" and "Cimarron."

My favorite Western performers Dave Stamey, Jon Chandler and the Wichitones, Brenn Hill, R.W. Hampton and Cow Bop will be on stage this year at the festival.

Fans will be happy to see that the wildly popular Quebe Sisters Band will return this year. It wouldn't be a Cowboy Festival without Western singing legend Don Edwards.

I'm a little sad that the Sons of the San Joaquin won't be on stage this year. They are a favorite of mine, but they're booked that weekend at International Agri-Center in Tulure, Calif.

Another festival highlight, the Cowboy Cultural Committee from Visalia, returns with the best food on the premises, biscuits and gravy and Cowboy Cobbler.

Get in the Cowboy festival spirit early with a Q&A with Joel Cox.

The event will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 14, at Hasley Hall Theatre, College of the Canyons. The $25 ticket includes a wine reception.

Cox is a 2012 Walk of Western Stars honoree and film editor of western classics "The Outlaw Josey Wales," "Pale Rider" and "The Wild Bunch." The event will be an interactive discussion of his career in the film industry, working with Clint Eastwood and Sam Peckinpah.

The Cowboy Festival officially kicks off at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 19, with the unveiling of the saddle plaques of honorees Glenn Ford and Cox on Main Street in downtown Newhall during the monthly Senses event.

Also on Thursday, April 19, will be the Cowboy Couture fashion show held at 7 p.m. at the Repertory East Playhouse, 24266 Main St. in Newhall. Tickets: $25 and $35. For Tickets call: (661) 288-0000 or go to www.repeastplayhouse.org.
Many of the "hot ticket" events, such as the backstage tour of Melody Ranch, the evening with Dave Stamey at Hart Mansion and the Californio Fiesta De Rancho Camulos with Don Edwards are sold out, but there are still tickets available for the entire weekend of entertainment at Melody Ranch (including Saturday and Sunday performances by Don Edwards) and Melody Ranch Movie Night.

The movie night will be held at 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 20 at Melody Ranch Motion Picture Studio. Tickets: $60. Enjoy an intimate western style dinner under the stars and exclusive shopping on Melody Ranch's main street and experience a once in a lifetime viewing of the classic film "3:10 to Yuma." For tickets visit www.cowboyfestival.org.

Guests must park at the Festival Shuttle parking site and then take a shuttle (bus) to Melody Ranch. Parking can be found at Railroad Avenue and 13th Street. Parking is free.

Tickets to the weekend festival are $30 for adults (two-day pass) and $15 for children. One day passes are $20 for adults and $10 for children.

The family-friendly event also includes the Pioneer Living exhibit, where children can pan for gold, spin wool and relive the old days like children of the early West.

To purchase tickets call Santa Clarita's Arts and Events Office (661) 250-3735.

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