Bowie Fest has something for everyone

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 9, 2000

VIDALIA, La. — Vidalia’s 12th annual Jim Bowie Festival, to be held today in the town’s old courthouse square, will have something for everyone, said Festival Committee Chairman Dave Regan.

&uot;We had more than 3,000 people last year and are expecting even more this year, especially since we have new activities like pony rides and a petting zoo for the children,&uot;&160;Regan said.

The festival will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, followed by a street dance from 8 p.m. to midnight featuring local band Easy Eddie and the Partyrockers.

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The festival’s name comes from a 1827 knife duel on a nearby sandbar that involved the legendary Jim Bowie. A reenactment of the knife fight featuring actor Jack Edmondson will take place at 11:30 a.m. today near Vidalia Town Hall.

Several different types of music, from country, gospel and Cajun music to blues, rock and oldies, will be performed on the festival’s three stages.

Featured acts will include Easy Eddie, Maggie Brown, the Y.Z. Ealey Band, the Moncla Cajun Band and Vidalia natives Christy Lipscomb and Doug Yates, among others.

A fishing tournament sponsored by the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office will also be held today, with fishing to take place on several area lakes starting at 6:30 a.m.

Entries will be weighed in from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the courthouse grounds, and awards will be handed out starting at 1 p.m.

Drawings will be held for a duck/fishing boat with a motor and trailer, a mini bass boat with motor and a rod-and-reel set. Proceeds will go to Concordia Parish’s Drug Abuse Resistance Education&160;(DARE) program.

Both the tournament and the festival in general, said Sheriff Randy&160;Maxwell, &uot;are shaping up to be the biggest I’ve ever seen.&uot;

Booths at the festival will offer a variety of fair food, from funnel cakes to cotton candy to nachos, as well as Louisiana favorites like jambalaya and fried fish.

Other booths will feature games, face painting and puppet shows for children and a range of crafts, jewelry and other merchandise.

Portions of Oak, Spruce and Texas streets around the old courthouse will be closed for the festival.

Five Vidalia police officers and two Concordia Parish officers will patrol the festival and street dance, said Police Chief Billy Hammers.

&uot;Safety is our first priority,&uot;&160;Hammers said.