By Darryl Payne
Posted on January 4, 2010
February is a month filled with excitement as the Smoky Mountains remember the days of the cowboy. Relive the era of the Wild West with folktales and stories as well as western music, poetry, dancing, yodeling and much more. Pull out your boots and ten-gallon hat and take a peek at what you and your family can enjoy during February.
Smoky Mountain Storytelling Festival
Everybody loves a good story. You know, the kind that keeps you hanging on every word? At this year's Annual Storytelling Festival you'll hear stories about the adventures of the Wild West, and even a ghost story or two to keep you on the edge of your seat. These tales are told by professional storytellers from across the country including:
Waddie Mitchell – Cowboy poet and storyteller.
Bill Lepp – Five-time champion of the West Virginia Liars Contest.
Carmen Agra Deedy – Cuban-born author and storyteller of Latin American and Southern cultures.
Mitch Weiss & Martha Hamilton – Award-winning husband and wife team that also teach the art of storytelling.
Willie Claflin – Worldwide, award-winning storytelling festival participant and record holder.
Not only will you hear stories from professionals, but also from storytelling wannabees. The National Storytelling Network partners with the National Youth Storytelling Showcase to allow anyone across the country - ages seventeen and under - a chance to compete for the title of Grand Torchbearer. These tales and tellers are sure to catch your attention.
Named a “Top 20 Event” by the Southeast Tourism Society, the 18th Annual Saddle Up! Celebration is something you won't want to miss. This event includes western music, poetry and dance. Prepare to be entertained by performers such as:
Wylie & The Wild West – Appearing over 50 times on the Grand Ole Opry, Wylie Gustafson has been yodeling and performing country music with his band for years.
Sons of the San Joaquin – Three family members turn their love of the west into sweet harmony you'll enjoy for hours.
Yvonne Hollenbeck – One of the most published cowgirl poets in the west, Ms. Hollenbeck also co-writes many songs with popular western songwriters.
Sourdough Slim – Take singing and yodeling, add an accordion and ukulele, top it off with some comedy and lots of laughs, and you've got Sourdough Slim.
In addition to these performers, you'll also be treated to a Cowboy Symphony, a Western Swing Dance and Cowboy Church.
Chuck Wagon Jamboree
You'll normally find Roy Rogers, Jr. and the High Riders playing shows in Branson, Missouri. In February, however, they're headed with the Colorado Wranglers (formerly the Flying W Wranglers) to the Annual Saddle Up! in the Smoky Mountains. Completely sold out the previous years, this musical performance also includes a video tribute to Roy and Dale Rogers. With a feast of country favorites that are sure to quench your appetite, this dinner show is perfect for the whole family.
Things are heating up in the Smokies during February. Plan your getaway now and take part in all the cowboy celebrations before time runs out!
About Darryl Payne
Darryl Payne is a native of East Tennessee in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. He is a web developer with a passion for building great websites. As a local, he can offer a unique perspective on where to stay and things to do while on vacation in the Smokies. To read his latest recommendations, please click the Google+ follow button.