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Cowboy kickoff

Weekend event begins as three are added to Walk of Western Stars

Posted: April 18, 2013 10:16 p.m.
Updated: April 18, 2013 10:16 p.m.

Diamond Farnsworth, front right, poses with Santa Clarita city councilmembers and Miss Santa Clarita Valley queens as he unveils actor Lee Marvin's plaque on the Walk of Western Stars on Main Street in Newhall on Thursday.

An Academy Award winner, a character actor and a man described as radio’s “first singing cowboy” were all inducted into the Walk of Western Stars in Newhall during a ceremony Thursday night.

“We have never had such an opportunity or such a turnout as we have tonight,” Santa Clarita Mayor Bob Kellar told the crowd of about 100 that turned out for the ceremony.

The first inductee was Rodolfo Acosta, a character actor in both movies and television who died in 1974.

His son, Canyon Country resident Dante Acosta, said the induction was partly recognition of the character actors in film who are often overshadowed by bigger-name stars.

“My dad would be so proud of this moment,” Acosta said.

The second inductee was Stuart Hamblen, a singer and songwriter who penned several chart-topping songs and hosted a variety of popular radio shows.

Hamblen also lived in the Santa Clarita Valley from 1978 until his death in 1989, according to his daughter, Lisa Jaserie.

Bill Lindsay, Hamblen’s grandson, described him as a “cowboy’s cowboy.”

Aside from his exploits in music and radio, Hamblen was also the 1952 U.S. Presidential candidate for the Prohibition Party, Lindsay said.

Jaserie recalled how she got momentarily worried when the early returns in that election showed Hamblen slightly ahead.

“We didn’t want to go to Washington D.C.,” she said with a laugh.

The last inductee Thursday night was Lee Marvin, a longtime leading man who won an Academy Award for his performance in the 1965 film, “Cat Ballou.”

Diamond Farnsworth, a longtime friend, accepted the award on Marvin’s behalf.

“He was probably one of the nicest guys you ever wanted to meet,” Farnsworth said of Marvin, who died in 1987.

Thursday’s ceremony was part of the larger Senses on Main event in Newhall kicking off the 20th Annual Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival, which runs through the weekend.



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