KARNES COUNTY  – The 26th annual Lonesome Dove Fest will take wing beginning Friday at the Karnes County Youth Show Barn.  

The event runs through Saturday with a parade through downtown Karnes City scheduled for Saturday morning at 10 o’clock and entertainment and exhibits for everyone running through the day and into the night.

All members of the Karnes City Rotary Club and the many volunteers have worked almost year long in preparation for the event that welcomes in the dove hunting season to the area. The Fest is known statewide and even draws a few avid hunters from out of state.

The event actually kicks off this year with a Black Gold Shoot-out on Thursday morning, as teams vie for top honors in a clay bird shooting contest. The special event has several sponsors and company teams will be competed for bragging rights as the ‘top guns’ in the county.

Friday’s designated Youth Day at the Fest from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. as bus loads of youngsters will have a chance to visit and catch educational exhibits throughout the grounds at the Youth Show Barn.

“Youth Day gives the kids a chance to learn a little bit more about the outdoors and nature than they would during their regular school days,” said event organizer Randy Witte.

The annual event is the main fundraiser for the Karnes City  Rotary Club, with proceeds benefiting youth scholarships for all four Karnes County high school graduates and many other service efforts for the community and youth organizations.   

There will also be a barbecue cook-off on Saturday with cash prizes to the top pit masters. 

Music will fill the air both Friday and Saturday nights as top area entertainers will grace the stage at the show barn. The music begins each evening at 6 o’clock and lasts until midnight.

Another highlight will be the county battle of the drum lines. All county high schools will have their musicians doing their best to earn the county’s drum line bragging rights.

The annual raffle and auction help close out the event on Saturday and helps raise a good portion of the funds the Rotary Club donates back to the community in scholarships and other means.

“We’ve been really blessed with the community support we have received over the years,” said Witte.

“We can’t do it without the community’s great support and assistance.”

The Lonesome Dove Fest is not all about hunting. Sure, it has its roots in dove hunting, but the Fest is all about having good clean family fun, according to the organizers.

See the special Life Outdoors section in today’s paper for even more information on the Karnes County Lonesome Dove Fest.

Editors note: Some information for this article was derived from the Lonesome Dove Fest website.

Former editor of Karnes Countywide, Beeville sports