The National Day of the American Cowboy started in 2004 as a result of the efforts of American Cowboy magazine, which wound up designating the fourth Saturday of every July as a day of recognition. This year in Fort Worth, the recognition takes up the entire weekend, thanks to the National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum (formerly Cowboys of Color), whose National Day of the American Cowboy Celebration will take place around the city.
It starts on Thursday with a Grand Prairie Air Hogs baseball game. (The Cats are out of town.) Friday features an Unsung Heroes Award program at the museum, followed by a blues concert with Floyd Taylor. Saturday begins with a parade through the Stockyards and segues into a family festival with storytelling, music, trick ropers, face painting, stick horse racing, and Creole food. The evening culminates in a zydeco blow-out with music by Leon Chavis & The Zydeco Flames, Step Rideau & The Zydeco Outlaws, Curley Taylor and Zydeco Trouble, and Dog Hill Stompers. (What, not Zydeco Dog Hill Stompers?) The festival ends on Sunday with a rodeo at Cowtown Coliseum.
Actress Pam Grier returns to preside over the festivities. Proceeds from the events will benefit the museum, helping to ensure that the pioneers whom it honors won’t be forgotten.