The Bandera Courier
Bandera Courier
Thursday December 14, 2017
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Wild game mardi gras palooza

Carolyn B. Edwards

Well, whoa and yeehaw there, cattle persons!
Do not, I repeat, do not leave town Saturday, Jan. 30. If you do, you'll miss out on one the best special weekends of the year.
The fun starts sometime Saturday morning with the Mardi Gras parade, led off by the 11th Street Cowboy Bar's float. James McGroarty and Stella Tedesco, Bandera's King and Queen of Cowboy Mardi Gras, play official hosts for the event. This has turned into one of the best of Bandera's parades. Colorful floats, plenty of music, and beads, beads, beads! Folks from all over pack the sidewalks, showing as much enthusiasm as the happy people in the parade.
Wear the colors - purple, gold and green - and join in the fun. The parade is mostly family friendly. (I found last year's entry of an Indian pulling a couple of white women down Main Street disturbing. If he shows up again this year, just cover the kids' eyes, or use it as an opportunity to teach them about America's abysmal history of slavery and human trafficking, which continues to this day.)
Once the parade is done, signaled by the second passing of the 11th Street Cowboy Bar's float, take care of your hunger pains by strolling up to the Bandera United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall on 11th Street for their annual Potato Palooza.
Enjoy giant baked potatoes, ready to be fully loaded with every condiment you might wish to pile on to your spud. The proceeds always go to a good cause and you'll find your hosts to be some of the friendliest people in Bandera.
Then spend the afternoon enjoying an adult beverage and good music at the 11th Street Cowboy Bar, or any of Bandera's other fine entertainment establishments.
Then, when hunger strikes again, head on out to Mansfield Park on Highway 16 north of Bandera for Grace Lutheran Church's annual Wild Game Dinner. Serving runs from 4 pm to 7 pm, with a full menu of various wild game meats, cole slaw, potato salad and tea. Beer will be available for sale.
Put in a few bids in the silent auction and be sure to purchase a handful of raffle tickets, with 10 guns - from handguns to rifles to shotguns - in the give-away. You need not be present to win.
Meal tickets are $15 for all-you-can-eat. Raffle tickets are $5 each. If you need a ticket, I still have some at the Courier office!
The Lutherans, like the Methodists, are fine, friendly folks, so come on out!