The festival runs Friday through Sunday and includes a wide variety of activities. The Sheep Parade takes place at 10 a.m. on Main Street and includes horses, wagons, antique tractors, stock dogs, historic and modern sheep camps, and 1,200 sheep that will be herded from Cedar Mountain down Cedar City’s Main Street.
The annual Sheep Parade is the highlight event of the Cedar Livestock & Heritage Festival, providing an exciting glimpse of agricultural tradition and livestock heritage to spectators along the route.
“The sheep drive is about tradition, when cattle and sheep ranchers trailed their animals from summer range on Cedar Mountain to winter range in the valley,” Festival Chair Chad Reid said. “Cedar City is the only place in the United States that still has a designated livestock trail that runs through its city limits. Honoring our community’s western agricultural commitment is the core of this annual celebration.”
The parade route on Main Street runs from 400 South to 200 North. Parade entry applications will be accepted up to Friday. To be true to the mission of the Livestock Fest, organizers request that all entries be authentically western and/or agriculturally based. Organizers also encourage entries in memoriam of members of the livestock industry.
After the parade the tractors and sheep camps will also be on display the rest of the day at the Cross Hollow Event Center during the Cedar Livestock & Heritage Festival.
In addition to the parade, the festival features cowboy music and poetry, a Dutch Oven cooking contest, a Backyard BBQ cooking contest (new this year), an antique tractor pull and kids pedal tractor pull, a stock dog demo, a vintage car display, a sheep camp display, 4-H Halloween activities, a Color Country Quilt Show, and Grammy-nominated singer songwriter Don Edwards in concert. Most events are free to the public.
Edwards will perform on the Heritage Theater stage Friday at 7:30 p.m. Concert tickets are on sale for $20 each and can be purchased at the Heritage Theater Box Office, 105 N. 100 East or by calling 865-2882.
Don Edwards’ has entertained throughout the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, Europe and the Far East. In 1998, Edwards also appeared with Robert Redford and Scarlett Johansson in the critically acclaimed movie “The Horse Whisperer.”
Over the years, Edwards has received multiple awards from the Western Music Association for Male Vocalist and Performer of the Year. Recently, Edwards was selected for the Prestigious CHESTER A. REYNOLDS Memorial Award from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum for 2010. This award is named for the founder of the museum and honored Edwards for his contribution in perpetuating the ideals, history and heritage of the American West.
The Color Country Quilt Show will also be at the Heritage Center and will run from noon to 7:30 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. It will include displays of beautiful hand-made quilts and textile art.
Cowboy poetry and music will run from 3 to 7 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Cross Hollow Event Center. There will be a Cowboy Campfire Program and jam session Saturday at 7 p.m. at the event center.
There will be stock dog demonstrations throughout the day Saturday at the event center. This year the dogs will be herding ducks in addition to the traditional sheep and cattle, Reid said.
Taste testing for the Dutch oven cooking contest will be Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and taste testing for the Backyard BBQ Cook-off will be Friday from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Taste testing for each event is $5.
Though most of the activities are Friday and Saturday, the event carries over into Sunday with one event – Cowboy Church. This non-denominational gathering features spiritual poetry and songs and is at 10 a.m. at the Cedar Livestock Market on Highway 56.
For more information about the Cedar Livestock & Heritage Festival log onto www.cedarlivestockfest.com or call 586-8132. Information on the festival’s history and a complete schedule of events are available at the website.