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home : see & do : see & do May 24, 2016

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7/21/2014 1:43:00 PM
Three days of Wild West fun returns to Uptown Sedona this weekend
Sedona's National Day of the Cowboy will feature cowboy and western dramas, gunfights, comedies, tributes, poetry and demonstrations. Courtesy photos
Sedona's National Day of the Cowboy will feature cowboy and western dramas, gunfights, comedies, tributes, poetry and demonstrations. Courtesy photos

Sedona will celebrate the National Day of the Cowboy this weekend. The free event begins Friday, July 25, at noon and heads into full swing on Saturday, July 26, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. with some special promotions continuing through Sunday, July 27.

Co-presented by the Red Rock Posse and Sedona Main Street Program, National Day of the Cowboy will take place along SR 89A and on Jordan Road in Uptown Sedona.

A special Cowboy Arena is being set up at Canyon Breeze Patio, Parking Lot, and Plaza. Cowboy and western dramas, gunfights, comedies, tributes, poetry and demonstrations are taking place Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. There will be a Food & Spirits Court, courtesy of Canyon Breeze Restaurant.

The Red Rock Posse is a wild bunch of gun-slinging cowboys ... and a few cowgirls ... riding out of Sedona. All their many skits are originals offering a bit of history enacted with a sense of humor. And no story would be complete without shoot-outs offering lots of gunfire. All their work on this event is complementary.

They not only spend time writing and rehearsing for this big celebration but also help with all the planning and coordinating of other performers and activities. Make sure to show your appreciation. They'll be joined by the Sedona Showstoppers, presenting several musical revues. With more than two decades of performance history throughout the western states, they are sure to delight with their dancing, singing and comedy.

Cowboy Action Shooters, the Kirkham's of Sedona, will be demonstrating their skills here as well. Jessica, alias "SASS Kicker," is the 2014 Winter Range Junior and Overall Women's National Champion, two time World Junior Champion (2012 & 2013) and two time overall Women's State Champion in Nevada and Arizona.

In May 2014 she and her brother Cody James were featured on the Outdoor Channels Shooting USA television series. On Saturday, she'll be joined by her father, Greg Kirkham, who got the interest started and has fanned both the cowboy and community spirit ever since.           

Wyatt Earp, the great-nephew of the Arizona legendary Wyatt Earp, will present a tribute to the lawman and gunfighter who lived from 1848-1929. He also shares the story Hollywood never told - that of a man of his time, with a love of family and children.

Today's Wyatt Earp has been portraying his famous relative for 17 years nationally and internationally, in an effort to make folks aware of history by bringing it to life. Much of his material is written by his wife Terry Tafoya Earp, an award winning Arizona playwright.

Lee Anderson, a historian from Mesa, with his trick horse Concho will be depicting the 1880's Cowboy in authentic dress & giving the historical background. Lee and Concho will also be out in Canyon Breeze Plaza to visit with folks and give photo opportunities throughout the afternoon.

Doves & Slugs, a California based competition gun fighting group, will perform their award-winning 1st Place Skit incorporating authentic time period weaponry, clothing and verbiage of the American Cowboy.  

Undressing the Victorian Lady is a historical demonstration of a Victorian Lady's many-layered clothing. There will also be some Cowboy Poetry & Lore, and a gun safety presentation, all at the Cowboy Arena.

All ages can try their hand at roping, with or without instruction. Roper Paul Pitts has come down from Kingman to show how it's done if need be. He'll be in Canyon Breeze Plaza most of the time Saturday.           

Up the street at Taos Plaza, you'll find free Western Stickers & Tattoos Saturday afternoon to delight the li'l cowpokes in your midst. Taos Cantina will offer Cowboy food to go from noon to 6 p.m., and while you're waiting take the photo opportunity of their Ride the Javelina cut-out and enter their Facebook contest.

Several of the stores and cafes on both sides of the street and on Jordan Road will host special promotions or sidewalk sales, either Saturday or Friday through Sunday, so make sure to get an Event Program and check them all out.

Somewhere in Time Reenactors will be mingling in period costume from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, and are delighted to provide a photo opportunity. They'll be visiting in front of A Day in the West, Red Rock Western Jeep Tours, Red Rock Discount Adventures, Sedona Movie Museum and Sedona Fudge Company, so make sure to catch them at one of these locations.

Cheers Plaza, at the corner of SR 89A and Forest Road, will play host to a Squirt Gun Quick Draw from 1-4 p.m. on Saturday. Down the street, Cowboy Corral has brought True West Magazine to town on Saturday. They'll be giving away the latest issue of their magazine from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. while supplies last. And in front of Black Cow Cafe, Sedona Girl Scouts will do balloon-twisting and face painting Saturday from 2-4 p.m.

Tex & Emmylou Cowboy Comedy, by locally Tom & Shondra, will be performed at Oak Creek Marketplace on Friday from 5-7:30 p.m. and again on Saturday from noon to 3 p.m.

Paloma Lokus, local celebrity country singer-songwriter will entertain at Oak Creek Marketplace from 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday. This 17-year-old also plays acoustic & electric guitar. With 16 studio recorded songs, 8 available on iTunes, her song lyrics were all published in poetry books. She's won all local singing competitions in 2013 and 2014, with plans to participate in "The Voice" or "American Idol" in 2015.

Enjoy the Sedona Wine Walk starting at Made In Arizona, with wine tastings, palm readings and occasional hold-ups at the bar. Get a free coupon book and enjoy the entertainment. Nearby, Sedona Fudge Company will give away fudge samples and has a daily drawing for a free pound of fudge on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Cowboy/Cowgirl Outfit Contest will take place next to Sedona Movie Museum in the Uptown Mall on Saturday. Starting at 3 pm with Children - Ages 1 -10, at 3:15 for Youth Ages 11-17, at 3:30 for Adult Cowgirls and at 3:45 for Adult Cowboys. Judges Petra Van de Hay and Judy Hunt will award the winners a prize, courtesy of Cowboy Corral.

Meet the Arizona Rangers - Verde Valley Company and visit for some Rangers history and photo opportunities. They'll be available from 1-6 p.m. on Saturday at the Mid-Block Crosswalk Plaza with the Joe Beeler statue. And while you're there, challenge your compadres to a friendly round of Cowpoke Bean Bag Toss or Ring Toss.

Free "Wanted Poster" Flash Portraits by Caricature Artist Carol Hofford will be created in front of Red Rock Western Jeep Tours. She'll be working from 1-2:30 and 3:30-5 on Saturday.

Oaxaca Plaza is hosting live entertainment from 2-4 p.m. Harpy Trails, Ken and Lyn Mikell, play a wide range of traditional music, with particular attention to the Celtic roots of cowboy music.

From old time trail songs to the golden era of the radio and silver screen cowboy, Ken's rich vocals and Lyn's beautiful harp put a new twist on old time favorites. The music of the Old World found a new home at the hearths and campfires of the Old West. Ken and Lyn are proud to be a part of that continuing tradition.

The Aligning Light Center Celebration, up Apple Avenue to the corner of Jordan Road, is being held from noon to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. You'll find demonstrations (flute playing, self-card readings, smudging feathers, bath salts & more) plus Free 5-minute services including life guidance, readings (oracle card, tarot, toe & psychic), intuitive coaching, feather blessings, smudgings & chair massages. They're also offering discounts for those dressed in cowboy gear. And there is a sidewalk sale across the street at Peace Place.

Free helium balloons and popcorn will be offered by Patriot Disposal from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday at the Matterhorn Plaza Transit Stop near the crosswalk. There's another chance to challenge your group to a friendly Bean Bag Toss, in front of Sedona Kid Company.

A family-friendly show "The Facts Keep Gettin' in the Way of the Story" will be performed by Michael Peach in Jordan Hall at Wayside Chapel at 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 on Saturday. Peach's show features his unique blend of original cowboy poetry with a tongue-in-cheek look at the history of cowboying and the greater Sedona area.  Mike spins tales using jokes, stories, and original cowboy poetry to explore the hard work and hard play of ranching and cowboy life.  After his show of about an hour duration, stay to meet Mike and perhaps buy one of his books or CDs.  Admission is free, though donations are gratefully accepted.  

Make sure to take your chance in the Fast Draw Shootout Competition at Clear Creek Trading Company from 1-6 p.m. Saturday. This competition is open to the public for a $5 fee and the proceeds benefit the Red Rock Posse, a local non-profit street theater group.

Across the street at the Sedona Arts Center, artist demonstrations occur all Saturday. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Margo Mitchell will demonstrate Oil Painting and Linda Sherman, Watercolor Painting. At 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Mary Lois Brown will demonstrate Oil Painting. And from 1:30-4:30 p.m., Sue Horine will demonstrate Jewelry and Belt Buckle making.

In the midst of all the art, Harpy Trails will make music from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Ken and Lyn Mikell perform traditional cowboy music, from old time trail songs to the golden era of the radio and silver screen cowboy. Stop by the Cowboy & Cowgirl Photo Cutout stands set up at Sinagua Plaza by Whiskers Barkery and get everyone in on the photo opportunity anytime Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

As you walk along "Main Street," keep your eyes open for commemoratives of Western movies filmed in Sedona and the actors who brought cowboy life into our homes. These bronze Hands through History: Sedona Western Films plaques are embedded in red rock concrete with the handprints or boot prints of the actors. Celebrating our own cultural heritage, they're displayed in pedestals at Matterhorn Shoppes, Canyon Breeze Plaza, Orchards Plaza, Cowboy Plaza and the Chamber Visitor Center too. In the center of Uptown at the "Mid-block Crosswalk Plaza", pause to notice the life-size sculpture depicting Joe Beeler - an incredibly talented artist who lived here and was one of the founding members of the Cowboy Artists of America organized right here in Uptown Sedona. These are all great place for one-of-a-kind family photos.

This event is possible because of the financial and service support of our community-minded businesses, organizations and our media partners, with the volunteer efforts of local folks. Huge thanks go to our Title Sponsor - Red Rock Western Jeep Tours & A Day in the West, to our Platinum Star Sponsors - Sedona Pines Resort and Wyndham Vacation Ownership. Special thanks to Gold Star Sponsor - Sedona Fudge Company, Site Sponsor - Canyon Breeze Patio, Parking Lot & Plaza, Canopy Sponsor - Verve Events & Tents, Silver Star Sponsor - Clear Creek Trading Company, Bronze Star Sponsor - Sterling Financial Services and Copper Star Sponsor - Gifts Galore & HP Café. Thanks also go to our Donors: City of Sedona, Sedona Now TV Channel 18, Red Rock Posse, Sedona Showstoppers, DiBattista Construction, Alliance Heating & Cooling, Florange Signs & Designs, ProBuild, Southwest Inn at Sedona, Patriot Disposal Inc., Sedona Segway Tours, Cowboy Corral and Olsen's Grain. We're grateful for the help of the City of Sedona, Sedona Police Department, Sedona Volunteer Park Rangers, Arizona Rangers - Verde Valley Company, and numerous individual volunteers.

Back in the early days when Sedona was a little town, the cowboys and ranchers would put on their go-to-town best dress clothes and head uptown for a little fun.

Come watch the cowboys and horses, hoot and holler for the gunfights, chow down on good food, try your hand at roping, put on your dancing boots and enjoy some great country music and performers, take in some great cowboy art, have a chat with the artists at work.

Be sure to say "Howdy" to a stranger as if you have known 'em all your life! If you feel the cowboy spirit move you, join in with the goin's on! National Day of the Cowboy was established in 2005 to recognize the character and values of the American Cowboy: honesty, integrity, courage, compassion, respect, patriotism and a strong work ethic.

An Event Program and Parking Map are available online at

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