Leon Worden




Your pick: poetry, parade or the park

By Leon Worden
Wednesday, May 6, 1998

D
idn't get enough cowboy poetry and music in March? The Sons of the San Joaquin, a perennial favorite at Melody Ranch, will host the first-ever festival of their own up in Clovis (outside Fresno) over Memorial Day weekend, May 23-24.

They're calling it "Fandango" and they'll spotlight many familiar headliners, like Don Edwards and Waddie Mitchell. (Don't miss Edwards' acting debut in the new Robert Redford film, "The Horse Whisperer," playing in theaters everywhere on May 15.)

Fandango will feature some great mariachi and bluegrass bands, as well. There's even a rodeo — which is something we should think about bringing back to Santa Clarita. If nobody's using the Saugus Speedway...

Anyhow, $20 gets you into all the shows for a day, or you can pick up a two-day pass for $30 and make a weekend of it. Call 209-325-7734 for tickets. See you there!

* * *

A great big cowboy thank-you to John Mann (Triple M Graphics, 251-1909) and Pauline Harte's "other half" Duane (Academy Mailing, 818-768-2302) for printing and shipping the entry forms for the 1998 Santa Clarita Fourth of July Parade!

That said, please note that like the proverbial check, the forms are in the mail. If you've been on the mailing list for parade entry forms in the last three years, yours should arrive soon. Please wait until next week before calling.

On the other hand, if you're new to the valley or you just KNOW you aren't on the list, you have two options: fill out the form at the Official Parade Site or call the Official Fourth of July Answering Machine at 297-5261.

If you call, be sure to spell your name and give the name of your group (if any) along with your complete mailing address and phone number. The machine will transcribe your information onto paper and voila! Your entry forms will arrive a few days later.

The parade will be held Saturday, July 4 (duh) at 9:45. The route is the same, winding through the streets of Newhall from Hart Park to Newhall Park by way of Walnut Street, Lyons and Orchard Village.

Afterward, plan to hang around at Newhall Park because that's where Patti Rasmussen and Kimberle Wooten and Co. will stage the first annual SCV Country Fair. It'll be "the" place to be over the July 4th weekend, and no, the Chamber of Commerce won't be competing for your attention with a separate event elsewhere.

The Country Fair actually starts on Friday, July 3, and offers three days of continuous entertainment, with games, food, carnival rides, local bands, dance studios, theatre groups, auctions, arts and crafts, pony rides, a petting zoo, storytelling, puppetry — let me catch my breath here — and lots of old-fashioned activities like a greased pig contest, gunny sack races and a watermelon eating contest.

Proceeds from the fair will be used to restore the Newhall School and Hart High auditoriums, which are currently being used as a) storage and b) nothing, respectively. To volunteer or sponsor a booth at the Country Fair, call Kimberle at 254-6437. Just don't call her Kimmy.

Now then. Knowing when the Country Fair would be held, the parade committee thought long and hard this year about a parade theme. After much hemming and hawing and debating and conferencing, when all the chips were down, John Boston stuck his finger in the air and said, "How about 'America's Country Fair'?"

Never mind what you see on TV. This is how the really tough decisions are made.

As for Grand Marshal, the committee wanted to uphold a tradition and honor someone who has gone "above and beyond" as a volunteer or leader or both. In unison, like a herd of NOW members at a Clinton rally, all the committee members said, "How about Clyde Smyth?"

And so it was. Is.

Pick a phone number and call today.

* * *

Footnote from the "Whatever happened to" dept.: I ran into Ed Powell last week, for the first time in a couple of years. Ed, you might remember, is the father of former LAPD officer and ex-Valencia resident Larry Powell, who bore the brunt of the Clinton administration's wrath against those involved in the 1991 Rodney King incident.

Larry is living in Southern California and making $7.50 an hour selling computers. He wants to write a book but is having trouble with the "Son of Sam" laws. God bless America.

    Leon Worden is a Santa Clarita resident.

    ©1998 LEON WORDEN — ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
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