Cowboy Heritage Festival

I fixed it Dad.. added two photos too!

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On Saturday my friend and I loaded up our kids and went over to Kissimmee to the Cowboy Heritage Festival.  Unfortunately it was BLAZING hot and we got there at about two when most of the activites were really over.  We got to see the bull whips crack and some roping, but we missed some things that weren’t on the general flier we saw like the Ranch Horse competition.  We also forgot to get cash on our way, so that lovely smell of brisket and swamp cabbage never made it past our noses.

What we did get to see were some pretty sweet Cow Whip displays, that boasted contestants from age 4 to 84.  There were Reenactment camps scattered about that displayed with some historical accuracy the progression of people through time throughout Florida.  One of the most interesting to me was the Black Seminole display.  The man who was there with it was extremely nice, and told us all about who they were and about his heritage in particular.  I think he might have been the same guy you see on the poster, on the horse.

The Native American display was nice too.  The man there had all kinds of recreated artifacts and gladly told us all about them. He had hairpins, brushes, pelts, and was dressed in costume. My favorite part were the Cracker Horses.  I love horses, and genetically I think my kids got it too.  We stopped and discussed about how the Cracker Horses came about, what the original cowhunters in Florida looked like, what equipment they used, and learned that it wasn’t hard to find a “period” saddle.  Apparently in Portugal and Spain the design hasn’t changed in over 400 years and since that’s where the first Floridians came from, the saddle is no different. I also learned that some of the Cracker horses are gaited as a result of the heavily bred horses that were their ancestors.  It would have been nice to stay longer, to take more photos, and go to the rodeo, but it didn’t happen this time.  Maybe next year.

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