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Cowboys and Elk: Cowboy poetry at the Castle Valley Outdoors




Kent Petersen delivers some cowboy poetry to the audience.

On the evening of Aug. 19, the Emery County Historical Society was welcomed to Castle Valley Outdoors for the annual Cowboy Poetry Night. Franklin Johnson, owner of Castle Valley Outdoors, welcomed everyone to the ranch for a fun evening of entertainment and food.
Historical Society President Bert Oman introduced Kent Petersen who would serve as master of ceremonies for the festivities. Petersen noted the improvements the ranch had made since the visit in 2003. “They have put in lawn, and the ponds are new also. The ponds are stocked with fish, and I’m sure everyone noticed the bull elk on the drive in from the highway,” said Petersen. Between performers, Petersen kept everyone laughing with humorous stories he claims hold some measure of truth.
Zen Majors began the evening with a tribute to the flag and the men and women who are defending our rights to meet and enjoy things such as the gathering present. His first recitation was “A Piece of Cloth” that described the many different faces of the flag and those who have fought and died to protect what it stands for. “A Double Edge Sword” was the next piece Majors expressed. This piece recalled the trials of Old Glory. Majors finished his performance with a saga about “The Old Spanish Trail” and those who traveled along its route.
Oman read two poems. The first was entitled “The Day I Roped a Deer” and the second was “Swasey’s Leap.” Jay Frandsen, strummed his guitar and entertained the group. “These are my favorite songs,” he said. “These are the ones that I sing on my backporch when I’m singing for myself.” Frandsen sang “God Must be a Cowboy at Heart,” “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys,” “Much Too Young to Feel This Damn Old,” and “Amarillo By Morning.” He also sang two songs which he wrote himself.

The elk at the Castle Valley Outdoors overlook the cowboy poetry reading.

Ferron resident Evelyn Huntsman was welcomed next to perform a couple of silly songs. She made the crowd laugh with her renditions of “I Am My Own Grandpa” and “I Never See Maggie Alone.”
At this juncture in the events, Petersen welcomed everyone to come and be served the fresh, warm peach cobbler and ice cream. As those present were given their refreshments, Frandsen continued to sing to everyone’s delight.
Following the cobbler and song, Petersen recited a Robert Service poem he learned in high school, “The Shooting of Dan McGrew.” He then took requests from the audience for their favorites of his work. “Golf Course,” “School of Life,” and “Old Blue” were some of the requests.
The Emery County Historical Society meets each month to explore a part of the history of this county and its people. For more information or to join the fun, call Bert Oman at 381-5676, Mervin Miles at 748-2249, or Joyce Staley at 748-5156.

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