The last September weekend is coming up and that can only mean one thing in Lewisville, Texas: Western Days is trotting into Old Town.

Designated as the city’s signature event, Western Days is a free two-day festival complete with a tamale-eating competition, a parade of cattle and cowpokes and a day-long schedule of performances and activities. This year it will take place 5 to 11:30 p.m. Sept. 29 and pick up again from 10 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Sept. 30 in historic Old Town Lewisville.

Tickets, which are available on the city website, must be presented for entrance before 7 p.m. each day of the festival. After 7 p.m., there is a $10 charge for anybody over 10 years old.

Longhorns hangout in the cattle corral at Western Days 2016.(Photo by Christina Ulsh)

Western Days was first established in 1969, taking place whenever community volunteers were able to put it together. The sporadic tradition eventually died out in the 1980s due to the demands of putting it together and the lack of help available but came back in 2006 thanks to the Old Town Business Association.

The next year the City of Lewisville adopted the event as its responsibility and city council deemed it the city’s signature event. City staff have since been tasked with growing this annual event.

Western Days is fashioned to illustrate the history and the spirit of the West with such entertainment as pony rides, gunfight re-enactments and trick roping.

Activities

The city has also planned Western Week events. There will be a showing of Old West-themed Back to the Future III at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 26 in Wayne Ferguson Plaza, 150 W. Church St.  There will also be a preliminary tamale eating contest with City of Lewisville employees at high noon on Wednesday, Sept. 27 in the plaza.

Bands will be playing both Friday and Saturday, with headliners taking the stage at 10 p.m. Headliners Turnpike Troubadours will perform Friday and Randy Rogers Band will play Saturday on the Waste Management Main Stage. Other musicians and the stages they will be playing on are listed at the end of the article.

Fans cheer on their favorite eaters at the Tamale Eating Championship in 2016. (Photo by Christina Ulsh)

At Western Days, attendees can visit the Western Market, the Craft Beer Pavilion or the Longhorn Corral. The 20th Annual Lewisville Morning Rotary Club Car Show will be at the corner of Main and Mill streets. There will be a stick horse rodeo as well as pony rides.

Watch as hungry competitors — including reigning champ Adrian “The Rabbit” Morgan, Tim “Eater X”Janus, Sonya Thomas, Joey “Jaws” Chestnut and Miki Sudo — inhale as many tamales as they can in 12 minutes Saturday at 1 p.m.

The expanded Western Village will feature the Tribal Traditions Dance Troupe and the Campfire Prairie Ladies. There will also be a mechanical bull and a working blacksmith in the Western Village.

Dancers swing to live tunes at Western Days 2016. (Photo by Christina Ulsh)

Castle Hills has provided a Kid Kountry Playground in the village and a Culinary Corner in the MCL Grand Theater. The main art exhibit, with work created by local artist Daren Fagan, will also be showing at the MCL Grand.

Western Days’ first Cowboy Run takes place at 8 a.m. Saturday. It will start and finish on Walters Street behind City Hall, and runners are asked to dress in western wear.

Registration for the 5k is $35 and will include a T-shirt, a light snack, a drink and a finisher’s gift. On-site registration and packet pick-up starts at 7 a.m.

Proceeds will benefit the North Texas Chapter of The Cure Starts Now.

The one-mile Huffines Auto Dealerships Lewisville Cattle Drive Parade will be at 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 30 and will go east from Cowan Avenue and Main Street to Mill Street before heading south to the Purnell Support Center.

Click here for a more detailed schedule of events.

Volunteering

The Huffines Auto Dealerships Cattle Drive Parade makes its way through Old Town at Western Days 2016.(Photo by Steve Southwell)

There are still spots available to volunteer at Western Days. There is a slot from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday to work at the Festival Information Booth.  There are 24 slots open for volunteers to assist with the parade route from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.

Volunteers receive a free T-shirt. Sign up here. Direct volunteer questions to Shelly Pershing at spershing@cityoflewisville.com

Parking and Shuttles

A complimentary shuttle leaves every 15 minutes from the Lowe’s parking lot at 1001 Valley Ridge Blvd., Old Town Station at 617 E. Main St. and Hebron Station at 952 Lakeside Circle.

The official ride-share partner for the event is Bubbl Frisco. Promo code WESTERN17 gets riders discounted trips to Western Days. The Bubble stops are at Twisted Root and at the intersection of Mill and Elm streets.

Free parking is available at these locations:

  • Elm Street Public Lot, 127 S. Mill
  • Kealy Street Public Lot, 191 S. Kealy
  • Central Elementary, 400 High School Drive
  • College Street Elementary, 350 W. College St
  • LISD Student Support Center, 136 W. Purnell
  • Lewisville Special Services Offices, 400 W. Main
  • Macedonia Ministries Church, 702 S. Mill Street
  • ADA accessible – Lewisville Visitor Information Center, 247 W. Main
Certain roads will be closed during Western Days. (Map courtesy of the City of Lewisville)

Musical Acts

 

Waste Management Main Stage

Friday, September 29

Cordovas

Dalton Domino

Saturday, September 30

Kelly Willis

Tejas Brothers

Mark McKinney

Mike Ryan

Huffines Auto Dealership Lewisville Stage

Friday, September 29

Justin Mason

Bidi Bidi Banda

Roadside Libby

Saturday, September 30

Fiddle Rascals

Gibbonses

Texas Blues Crew

Milton Patton

Crystal Yates

Curtis Grimes

Havana NRG!

MCL Grand Performance Hall

Friday, September 29

Carolyn Wonderland

Saturday, September 30

Carolyn Wonderland