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Fort Belknap welcomes Historic Fort Trails Caravan, gears up for upcoming living history events

Travelers throughout Texas

set out on a journey through the

Historic Forts Trail that loops

through 29 counties in Central

West Texas, and is anchored by

the most significant Spanish fort

built in Texas and eight pre-andpost Civil War forts.

To celebrate the Texas Forts

Trail 50th anniversary Oct. 4 –

6, the caravan of travelrs rode

along the same route traveled

by Governor and Mrs. John B.

Connally more than 50 years ago.

“The 50th Anniversary caravan is a wonderful way to call attention to the unique heritage and cultural resources that exist in our state and especially within the Texas Forts Trail Region,” said Margaret Hoodstra, Texas Forts Trail Executive Director. “Texas is the only state with 10 separate heritage tourism regions, and they are based on the loop driving trails created by Gov. Connally in 1968.”

The group of travelers began its journey at the official Texas Forts Trail visitor center and traveled more than 650 highway miles to Fort Phantom Hill, Albany, Fort Belknap - Graham and Fort Richardson. The caravan made its way south to Brownwood, then west to San Angelo and north to Buffalo Gap, ending in Abilene.

Hoogstra said Heritage Tourism is a proven economic driver in Texas.

“In many Texas communities, the courthouse square or downtown area, museums, historic sites, parks, and other destinations preserve that area’s stories and heritage and attract travelers to stay longer and spend more,” she said. The Friends of Fort Belknap engaged the travelers and locals with a living history performance and firing of the canon.

Upcoming Events

The next living history event will take place at Fort Belknap to celebrate the annual Fort Belknap Days with Education Day and Public Day on Friday, Oct. 26 and Saturday, Oct. 27. Both events will begin at 9 AM.

The Friends of Fort Belknap welcome all schools to attend Education Day on Oct. 26. To set up arrival and departure, school officials should call 940-846-3222 or send an email to jnhammond1836@gmail.com. The Flag Ceremony is the first activity that will begin at 9:15 a.m. and the Officer’s Ball is the final activity that will start at 7 p.m. Time Was—a live string period band—will provide the music. There is no fee for admission.

Public Day on Oct. 27 is open to the public. Vendors will be on site. Pet owners must ensure all pets are on a leash. Alcohol is not allowed. Parking will be at the back of Fort Belknap on the softball field. The event opens with a flag ceremony at 9 a.m., and the closing ceremony begins at 5 p.m.

Step back in time with 19th Century demonstrations such as blacksmithing, washer woman, spinning, weaving, candle-making, bullet molding, and tomahawk throwing. Fans will be thrilled about the returning attractions such as the Federal Fort Soldiers and the Sons of Confederate Veterans Flag display.

New attractions guests can look forward to includes: a parade after the flag ceremony, the Richard Gonzales Lipan story, TPWD Buffalo Soldiers, Spanish American War camp, the Fort Belknap gun story and Canon Night Shoot at 9 p.m. on Friday night.

These events are sponsored by The Friends of Fort Belknap, Young County Historical Commission, the Young County Commissioners Court, Buchanan’s, Jerry’s Meat Market, Stewart’s, United, Walmart, Mike Sipes and Lee Allen Hunnewell.

Guests are encouraged to dress up or come as you are.

The Olney Enterprise

213 E. Main St.
PO Box 577

Olney, Texas 76374

Phone: (940) 564-5558

Fax: (940) 564-3992