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Saddle up for Kingsville Ranch Hand Weekend

Ranch Hand Weekend in Kingsville on November 22-24 features campfire cooking, demonstration, dancing, live music, rodeos, and more. Ring in the season Old West style in downtown Kingsville. Courtesy photo

Celebrate a cowboy Christmas in Kingsville on November 22-24 during the annual Ranch Hand Weekend. Activities include live music, cooking demonstrations, art, storytelling, a car show, two-step dancing, a rodeo, breakfast at King Ranch, a tree lighting, and shopping.

The weekend kicks off with the annual tree lighting ceremony Friday, November 22. Stop at the Train Depot Museum at 6 p.m. for complimentary cookies, hot chocolate, and coffee. At 6:30 p.m., the Presbyterian Pan American School Choir performs Christmas carols to prepare the crowd for the 7 p.m. lighting of the tree.

An acoustic show by Lauren Corzine is 8-10 p.m. And, don’t forget: All the shops in historic downtown Kingsville will be open late!

Early Saturday morning, King Ranch serves its annual Ranch Hand Breakfast from 7-11 a.m. Park downtown and take a free shuttle bus to the ranch, where cowboys will serve up eggs, refried beans, biscuits and gravy, sausage, and tortillas, all cooked over campfires. Coffee and juice are also included in the $6 price.

Tickets are available at the King Ranch Saddle Shop, visitors center, museum, the Kingsville visitors center, or the breakfast. Proceeds benefit La Posada de Kingsville, a celebration of lights parade set for 7 p.m. Saturday, December 7. (So plan to come back!)

Breakfast entertainment includes team roping demonstrations, re-enactments, live music, poetry, and storytelling.

King Ranch is also hosting a half-day birding tour starting at 7:30 a.m. The King Ranch Visitors Center will be open from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Daily tours begin at 9:30 a.m. with the Spotlight Tour set for 7-9:30 p.m. You can book a tour online.

After a hearty breakfast, head back to Kingsville, where the festivities continue. Vendors are open from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Entertainers Felix Truvere, Kingsville Youth Ballet Folklorico, Mariachi Nueva Vida, and Mariachi Azul y Oro take the stage from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Chalk Art registration begins at 11 a.m. The contest is noon-2 p.m.

Visit the Music Club Building behind the public library at 220 N. Fourth St. from 10 a.m.-2 p.m for the Howdy Authors events.

Take two-step and line dancing lessons at the Young Performers Stage at 10:30 a.m. or the Main Stage at 12:30 p.m. A two-step/line dance contest begins at 2 p.m. on the Main Stage.

At noon, the Kingsville Symphony Orchestra presents Music of the World at the Jones Auditorium. Tickets are $10, $20, and $30. Kids 12 and younger and TAMU-Kingsville students get in free.

The Ranch Hand Roundup Truck and Car Show is 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Winners will be announced at 3:30 p.m.

Mark Chestnutt headlines the Ranch Hand Weekend Country Concert, which begins at 7:15 p.m. at the J.K. Northway Exposition Center, 4501 E. Escondido Road in Kingsville. Tickets available here.

On Sunday, get ready for the Ranch Hand Weekend Rodeo from 1-5 p.m., also at the J.K. Northway Exposition Center. Kids can compete in an open calf scramble at intermission. The rodeo features five events: steer tying, calf branding, trailer loading, steer doctoring, and a cowboy stampede. Admission is free.

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