Prescott Western Heritage Days

Last Updated on Wednesday, 29 September 2010 08:30 Written by Chris Marzonie Wednesday, 29 September 2010 08:21

Over the weekend, the first annual Prescott Western Heritage Days event kicked off with a bang.

Prescott gunfighter

Gunfight on Whiskey Row

My friend Dennis Gallagher first told me about the event a couple of months ago and explained their intention to make this a high-caliber celebration of Arizona history, bringing together the largest gathering of reenactment organizations in the state. It sounded like a pretty tall order to me, but the idea of having all of these talented groups together in one town for one big event seemed like a perfect thing for Prescott. I’m happy to say that everyone pulled it off, and no one got hurt (well, at least not for real).

Shady Lady enforcing the law with a gun

One of the "Shady Ladies" enforcing the law in Prescott

Notables that attended were Dennis Gallagher (Founder & Chairman), Mayor Marlin Kuykendall, the Prescott Buscaderos, the Prescott Regulators and their Shady Ladies including the Fort Whipple Regulars, the Bill Williams Mountain Men, the Arizona Gunfighters, the Arizona Rough Riders, the Buffalo Soldiers, the Victorian Society, Sharlot Hall Museum, John Larkin and Mellisa Ruffner, and the bands Just for Mama and Spur of the Moment. I’m sure there were others; my apologies if I didn’t list them here.

Mountain Men on Whiskey Row

They came down from the mountains, we can only guess what for

Spur of the Moment's Creighton Miller plays dobro on Whiskey Row

Saturday morning started off with an opening ceremony and then the crowd was given the chance to register and sign releases for going into the “corral” to photograph the characters of the reenactment groups. I saw a lot of photographers (and gear!) out there and it looked like they were setting up a lot of cool shots with the actors and making some excellent photos. It will be fun to see the results of the photo contest.

Whiskey Row gunfighter

Tough guy

The gunfire and hollering all took place on Whiskey Row, but there was a lot to see at Sharlot Hall, too. Several period-camps were set up with the Rough Riders, the Buffalo Soldiers, and the Fort Whipple Regulars. The Elks Theater was also available to set up some photographs between 10am and noon. I called up Rich Charpentier who has shot some really great stuff at the Elks, and talked him into schlepping all of his gear downtown and setting it up (okay, maybe not ALL of it). He posted a few photos on his blog, too.

Arizona Roughriders

Members of the Arizona Rough Riders on the grounds of the original Governor's Mansion

Fort Whipple Regulars

Members of the Fort Whipple Regulars

The Prescott Western Heritage Days organization is a non-profit group donating all net proceeds from the event to the Sharlot Hall Museum and Prescott’s Christmas Lighting. The event is free to the public. See you next year.

Dennis Gallagher

Dennis Gallagher, founder and chairman of Prescott Western Heritage Days

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  1. Diane Smith   |  Wednesday, 29 September 2010 at 9:24 am

    Wish we could have been there! It looks great! Chris, your pix depict it all so well! I can almost smell the gunfire powder! ^_^

  2. Chris Marzonie   |  Wednesday, 29 September 2010 at 10:04 am

    Thanks, Diane. I wish you would have been here, too! There’s always next year :)

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