Pioneer Town's Heritage Day on Saturday, May 27, marked the official beginning of the summer season in Surface Creek Valley.
There was a big turnout of local history and pioneer heritage fans who enjoyed mild weather and sunshine. Period dress was fashion of the day. People enjoyed activities organized by the dedicated volunteers of Pioneer Town and Surface Creek Valley Historical Society.
This year's events were definitely livened up with a realistically staged gun fight on Pioneer Town's Main Street. It was a featured attraction as a simmering grudge or some kind of rivalry between re-enactors Cedar Creek Jack and Charley 2 Dogs erupted into gunplay at high noon. With authentic sounds piercing the black powder smoke-filled arena of Main Street, even the town sheriff and a deputy were drawn into the make-believe melee. In the end, an actor playing Cedaredge's turn-of-the-century Dr. Bolton rushed to the side of a wounded and prostrate 2 Dogs to hear his final words: "Doc, it's only a scratch," as the actors rose and enjoyed applause from an appreciative audience.
The Pioneer Town Welcome Center's gift shop continues making advances as a prime gift and souvenir destination for visitors and local shoppers alike. Manager Robin Rogers has searched "high and low" for unique and value-priced items, many of them made by local craftspeople.
"We have a wonderful group of local artists," Rogers said. "We have lots of new things, kids' things, and books on local history. We also carry the Salamandre lines of natural cosmetics and soaps." For those who shop ahead, a pair of genuine fleeced mittens would make a neat Christmas gift, Rogers notes.
There were carriage rides, a petting zoo, kids activities, and a burgers-and-brats lunch fundraiser served up by the Cedaredge Rotary Club.
The newly constructed pergola at Sutherland Indian Museum was officially dedicated and will provide many years of use and enjoyment for visitors to Pioneer Town. It was donated by Doris McGuire in memory of her late husband, Dick.