The wind didn’t deter shoppers eager to find hand-crafted or unique gifts for the cowboy on their Christmas list as the annual Cowboy Christmas hosted by the Oakdale Cowboy Museum packed in 2,500 visitors to the community center Saturday, Nov. 28.
Country music filled the center while Cowboy Santa — always a huge draw for the kids — made his grand entrance on horseback to the delighted applause of those assembled. The line for pictures with Santa curled around the vendors as parents did a little shopping and kids waited for their turn with the popular bearded fellow.
Cowboy Museum Executive Director Christie Camarillo said of the event, “Feedback from our exhibitors was very positive. New exhibitors reported they did way more than they anticipated and returning vendors said they did a lot more than in previous years.”
One exhibitor came from as far as Boise, Idaho to offer her unique gift items. Connie Morgan, owner of Just Spoonin’, decided to combine business with pleasure as she made a pit stop in Oakdale to sell her wares of repurposed spoons made into jewelry before moving on to spend the holiday with her son in the Bay Area.
One Oakdale family made their first visit to Cowboy Christmas as a mother-daughter shopping day.
Kim Lang and her 6-year-old daughter Katriece were checking out the vendor booths for possible purchases for their ranch while they waited in line for Cowboy Santa.
Katriece was decked out appropriately in John Deere clothing that she picked out especially for the day.
“We thought it would be nice to spend the day together and get a little Christmas shopping done,” Lang said with a smile.
As an added bonus for shoppers, the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce and the downtown merchants were holding a City Sidewalk Sale at the same time as part of the Buy Oakdale campaign aimed at keeping the sales tax within the community.
KAT Country 103 was broadcasting from the community center from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to keep things lively and to promote the event.