Reconnect With Old West Caldwell

As I read the travel experts declare 2017 as "the year of transformative travel--to connect more authentically to your surroundings, visit with the locals, have engaging conversations about life," I had to laugh because, though probably not what they meant, Caldwell and her authenticity could fit the fun it should be to host some of the 2017 Chisholm Trail celebrations, and going back in time to visit an authentic 1880's cattle town!      
     Look no further than your own Caldwell, Kansas, one of the 6 original cow towns in Kansas. We'd like to encourage everyone to enjoy the local flavor by dressing in 1880's era western or prairie clothes. Make, borrow, buy, or hit the thrift stores, because we want everyone to be part of this fun Old West Caldwell transformation on May 5-7, 2017
     Friday's Pub Crawl is always a good time. Grab friends, dress the part, and play your way thru the fun games. Plus this year, the Historical Society is conducting a downtown Ghost Tour, highlighting local characters, marshals, and citizens who lived, died, or worked in Caldwell's heyday as a cattle town. You will be escorted to each ghost storyteller by a tram ride. These will take place after dark and will begin at the Heritage Park, the hub for most of our events.
     Saturday May 6th, we'll transform what we know as 1st Street from Main to Chisholm into our Wild West Cow Camp Arena! We'll have stagecoach rides, teepee, pony rides, mechanical bull, bow & arrow obstacle race, Old West picture prop booth, longhorns, calf roping machine, artisan bazaar, horse shoes, food trucks, beer garden and more! 
     Right in the middle of it all, Caldwell is honored to host the Kansas-Oklahoma Proclamation Exchange (Texas may even make the trip). The relay of horseback riders will carry the proclamation signed by our governor from Abilene to Caldwell, to arrive in our Border Queen city for a big celebration. Many visitors are planning to attend this ceremony along with invited dignitaries from both states. 
     The Opera House will be hosting the Symphony in the Flint Hills travelling Chisholm Trail Sesquicentennial: Driving the American West exhibit during the weekend, sponsored by The Stock Exchange Bank, KanOkla Networks, and Caldwell Historical Society. Wild Women of the West will be performing everywhere from street corners to the Border Queen Museum and the Upstairs Roost. "The Gangs of Wild West Caldwell" show, complete with gunfights, can can dancing, and dozens of spirited actors, will perform on the street near the Cow Camp Arena. A mud run obstacle race, Cowboy Shoot target range contest AND a mounted shooting show will round out the day! 
     The stage will be set for an evening Chuck Wagon dinner, Old West Poker Tourney, entertainment & street dance by the Brady Moddelmog Band, and dancing the night away under the stars. Sunday May 7th, we'll come together for breakfast & Cowboy Church then a quilt show, barn quilt tour, and a swell-rut tour. NOW is the time to get your old time photos taken at the Shooting Gallery to line her display windows leading up to the fest; family photo, businesses, groups, or individuals. 
     The 150th anniversary of the trail that built our town on the prairie will be small town fun at its finest! More to come in next week's Chisholm Trail 150 Update.