Since the 1930s Hollywood stars like Gene Autry and William Boyd (Hop-a-Long Cassidy) has been making grand western appearances in Buckeye, Arizona. This year Hollywood star Don Collier will be Grand Marshal at the Buckeye Days Old West – Turn-of-the-Century Cattle Drive Parade January 28th at 9:30AM along Monroe Avenue 9th Street thru 2nd Street in Historic Downtown Buckeye, Arizona. Catch Don Collier signing autographs at Dr. Buck’s Wild West Show at the 6th Street Plaza just across the street from Buckeye City Hall. Collier, born October 17, 1928 is an actor known for television westerns during the 1960s. He played U.S. Marshal Will Foreman in the 1960-1962 NBC series Outlaws and Sam Butler in The High Chaparral. Collier has made more than seventy film and television appearances. He starred with John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, Anthony Quinn, Dean Martin, Tom Selleck, James Arness, and Elvis Presley.
Dust off your Roy Rogers, Injun Joe or Annie Oakley period clothes and head over to Dr. Buck’s Wild West Show January 30th and 31st of 2016 in downtown Historic Buckeye. I went to his last show at Historic Sahuaro Ranch in Glendale, Arizona. Situated along the dirt paths and orchards of fruit trees were stages for shows like Pistol Packin’ Paula and Gary “Bad Dog” Bennett & Blue Eyes Jack.
Outlaws topping it off
Deciding who will win the pie eating contest
How the West Was Won
As I walked past a brick fruit packing building built in the 1800’s I heard gun shots at the Cowboy Fast Draw Association, women and men were lined up to take a try at the targets set up. As fiddle and banjo played through the fruit trees a tall lanky figure riding a horse named Concho came clomping down the dusty trail before me. Lee Anderson is a favorite at Dr. Buck’s Wild West Show who looks like a cowboy from a bygone dude ranch wearing a vintage Stetson with two deep side dents. Lee is extremely photographic which is why he can always be found welcoming guests or taking in a show among the hundreds of spectators.
Pistol Packin’ Paula
The pie eating and habanero eating contest were my favorite. Naturally not many people signed up for the habanero time slot. The cowboys, constables, sheriff, outlaws trying to keep order amid the chaos was worth watching. The stage was situated under these huge mature trees and in front of a historic house with a porch. I felt like I was witnessing a birthday party at Aunt Polly’s house from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Dr. Buck made sure each contestant ate the habanero whole and watched them place the tiny black curved stem on the table. As each crazed contestant chewed the nasty pepper and placed the stem on the table the crowd of hundreds were hushed and all you could hear was the rustling of the tree leaves in the wind. The first guy chewed and swallowed but his face got really red. Each contestant had to let out a huge Yeeehaw after the swallow. The second contestant gave a good Yeee but then the haw came out this pathetic scratchy shameless groan. The crowd went nuts with laughter. I couldn’t believe the power Dr. Buck had over this crowd with something you could pick up in the vegetable isle. He is super hands on with his production.