By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Citys New Western Days Fest Kicks Off Sept. 30
Western Days
OTVB Administrator Pam Dumas holds concert tickets for the inaugural Western Days Find Your Country concert for Friday night, Sept. 30. Tickets are $6 for the evening that will feature Adam the Dancing Cowboy teaching line dancing followed by The Dave Russell Band sponsored by Kat Country 103 Radio. RICHARD PALOMA/The Leader


The inaugural Western Days – Find Your Country Event, sponsored by the Oakdale Tourism and Visitors Bureau is set to commence Friday night, Sept. 30, at 6 p.m. at the Oakdale Saddle Club Rodeo Grounds.

The gates will open and attendees will be able to receive instruction from Adam the dancing cowboy at 7 p.m. followed by a KAT Country concert with The Dave Russell Band.

OTVB Administrator Pam Dumas, who has been coordinating the event, said the band is a cover country band with some original pieces. The group has been featured in local television spots and has traveled throughout the area.

“Adam will teach line dancing so that during the concert people can dance what they learned,” Dumas said. “There’ll be a dance floor set up by the stage.”

Dumas said Encore AV of Ceres is providing a performance stage and lighting with a dance floor at the front.

Saturday’s festivities include a sanctioned International Chili Society cook off.

“We needed 10 participants to get sanctioned and we got our 10,” Dumas said. “There may be more entries by the event.”

The cook-off, which starts at 11 a.m., is a district level competition with the winner going to the regional finals in 2017 with a chance for advancement to the State, National, and World Finals.

Dumas said the chili competition will have local “celebrity” judges of Mayor Pat Paul, County Supervisor Bill O’Brien, and Kat Country’s Mark ‘Roper’ McLean on the panel.

In addition to the International Chili Society cook off, there will be a local chili contest by area service groups where those attending can purchase a tasting ticket for $5 that allows them to sample chili and vote for their favorite.

As the chili cook-off is being held the stage will feature entertainment with guitarist Steve Bernd that morning with Skirts ‘n Flirts square dancing at noon. The Sierra Nevada Guns for Hire have two performances at 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. with country singer Chad Bushnell featured in between.

Other performers that day will include Francesca Bavaro, who won the 2011 Valley’s Got Talent competition, Mel Sanguinetti and the Stepp Jammers, who offer songs about Oakdale, and singer Chris Ferris.

During Saturday’s activities there will be a mechanical bull and carriage rides. Both days will feature food and western vendors.

“This is a first time event and I’m fine tuning as we get closer,” Dumas said. “I’ve been working on this since January.”

Dumas said that the OTVB wanted a cowboy themed event to go with the city’s motto of being the Cowboy Capital of the World and the Western Days celebration was selected.

“There’s the rodeo in April and the Chocolate Festival in May, so we wanted to do something toward the end of the year,” Dumas said.

Tickets for Friday night’s concert are available online at or by calling the Oakdale Tourism and Visitors Bureau at (209) 345-9264. Tickets will also be available at the gate the night of the show