For the Saturday night performance, Douglas County Cowboy Poets founders Joel Hayes and Charlie Holloway have organized a fun-filled evening of song, rhyme and verse. Showcased performers in 2013 include cowboy poets Jerry Warren, recognized by the Georgia State Senate as the “Official Cowboy Poet of the State of Georgia;” David Fillingim, author of Will Rogers Medallion Award-winning Georgia Cowboy Poets, published in 2011; Charlie Holloway who authored Old Saddles & Good Advice and who is as widely known and respected for his traditional cow camp cooking as for his poems; and Joel Hayes who is known as the father of Georgia Cowboy Poetry and who has performed at every Douglas County Cowboy Poets Gathering since the first one held at Hudson’s by the Lake in 1997. The gathering’s master of ceremonies Frank B. Wood has been performing cowboy poetry for the past 45 years. Also performing poetry will be Georgian Tom Kerlin and Steve Porter from South Carolina. The 17th annual Georgia Cowboy Poets gathering will feature musical performances by guitarists Bill Turnipseed and Wayne Corley, Douglasville native harmonica player and poet Justin Hicks from Jacksonville, Fla., and David Fillingim. A newcomer to the musicians this year will be Tom Stavran on the Appalachian mountain dulcimer; Stavran teaches Appalachian mountain dulcimer lessons and free guided jam sessions at the Cultural Arts Center monthly. Other special guests include the Cowboy Poets Kids from Chapel Hill High School: Sierra Gunter, Brooke Gray, Brian Belton, Chelsea Reese, Ciarra Henderson, Ivan Washington, Derrion Burse and Lanese Love. These eight students, selected by the Douglas County Cowboy Poets through an audition process, will be reciting poetry and cowboy songs.
Chapel Hill High School is located at 4899 Chapel Hill Road, Douglasville 30135. Douglasville is 18 miles west of Atlanta; from I-20 West, take exit 36 (Chapel Hill), follow signs to Chapel Hill Road staying left off the interstate and then turn right off the exit ramp onto Chapel Hill Road; the high school is about 5.5 miles south of the interstate on your right. Contact the Cultural Arts Council for further information, directions and to purchase tickets, (770) 949-2787.