Bison Celebration Days

Bison Celebration Days

Caprock Canyon State Park - Quitaque, Texas

Every year in September the "Caprock Partners Foundation" holds the three day "Bison Celebration Days" to benefit Caprock Canyons State Park & Trailway and the Texas State Bison Herd Restoration project.

Bison Bull, part of the Texas Bison Herd
Bison Bull, part of the Texas Bison Herd

Friday

We arrived on Friday about noon. After checking in and getting our

campground assignment we looked around and saw some of the exhibits. There was a little bit of everything. Some spinning bison hair into yarn, buffalo hunter and buffalo solder reenactors, several area museums were represented. There were also craftsmen showing off Native American bow making and other weapon making skills and artifact collections.

more photos

All of the Friday activities were primarily there for school groups that toured the park that day.

Knowing that all of this would also be in place on Saturday we headed for our campsite to set up camp.

Saturday

Saturday about 10:00 am we went back to the park headquarters and took a closer look at the exhibits we had rushed through the day before. We also took some photographs of some of the Bison. They roam free in this park so you may see them anywhere anytime. If you have never seen an American Bison up close the first thing you notice is that they are huge. Also be sure that up close is never closer than 50 yards away. They are huge but they can run fast. Don't get too close.

About 11:30 we head to the arts and crafts show that was being held about 4 miles away in Quitaque (KIT uh kwa). Downtown Quitaque is not much more than a block long but there were arts and crafts booths set up on both sides of the street. We viewed all of their wares and worked both sides of the street.

Crafts Fair in Downtown Quitaque
Crafts Fair in Downtown Quitaque

At the end of the crafts booths we walked another block where a stage was set up in front of a building and a band was playing. There were also some moonwalk inflatables for children to play in. We passed on the moonwalk and went inside the building for lunch.

This was where the Celebration Barbeque lunch was served. This was advertised as a Barbeque sandwich with red beans, potato salad and all the trimmings. (onions, pickles, etc) and a glass of ice tea all for $5.00. I don't know about you but I have not bought any amount of barbeque for $5.00 in this century… until this day. The barbeque was excellent and ample. Everything was very good and all for $5.00.

We sat at a table with strangers and we were not strangers by the end of the meal.

Sunday

Sunday was the pinnacle of the "Bison Celebration Days". At 2.00 PM in a pasture near the entrance of Caprock Canyons State Park there was a concert. We arrived at 1.00 and heeded the advice to "bring a chair" because there won't be any. There was a big stage with a generator attached. It was far enough away that it could not be heard. The stage hands did the sound checks and set up the instruments as the crowd set up their spots. We the fans decide where the rows were and how close to the stage. It was a bright and sunny day. Many brought umbrellas to have a little shade

Buffalo Solder
Buffalo Solder

About 1:30 a big tour bus drove across the pasture and 20 minute later Ray Benson and "Asleep at the Wheel" took to the stage. If you are not familiar with "Asleep at the Wheel" I'm sorry, you don't know what you're missing. They primarily sing Western Swing. The music selection ran the gambit from Route 66, Hot Rod Lincoln to San Antonio Rose and a lot of Bob Wills music. Since Bob Wills was born in Turkey, Texas about 15 miles from where we were sitting, they were crowd favorites. The organizers even provided a dance floor for those who could help but dance in the 85 degree sun and many did. (see pictures)

The end of the concert was the last event of "Bison Celebration Days". We had a great time and I hope to be here next year.