WINFIELD — Mule Day is on the horizon, as the annual festival returns to downtown Winfield on Friday night and Saturday morning Sept. 23 and 24.
Mule Night kicks off at 6 p.m. with the flea market, arts and crafts, and food vendors start opening, and some local businesses will offer Mule Night Madness sales. There will also be live music.
The Mule Night 5k, sponsored by Encore, glow run begins at midnight, with registration running from 10-11:45 p.m.
On Saturday, vendors will start opening around 7 a.m. Parade registration will begin at 8 at the high school, and car show registration will begin at the middle school. Dancing will also begin behind Citizens Bank at 8.
At 9, antique tractor registration will begin at the Foodland parking lot. Cornhole registration will also begin in the Spann Real Estate parking lot, and the tournament starts at 10. The disc golf tournament will begin at 9 at the park.
The parade will leave from Winfield Elementary School at 9:30, and the parade will begin at 11.
One change to this year’s parade is that W.H. Box, who was going to serve as this year’s Antique Tractor Grand Marshal, decided to step down from the role due to his declining health. In 2009, Box asked the chamber of commerce about including tractors in the parade, and they’ve been there ever since.
Brett Wakefield, who played a large part in starting the Mule Night midnight 5k, will be this year’s grand marshal.
Mule judging starts at noon at the baseball field parking lot on County Highway 14.
New to this year’s Mule Day festivities will be the inaugural William Arnold Memorial Rodeo, beginning at 7 p.m., which will also feature food trucks and other vendors.
The rodeo itself will feature mutton bustin’, bull riding, bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, calf roping, steer wrestling, ranch bronc riding, barrel racing, team roping and breakaway roping.
Children who want to try their hand at mutton bustin’ must be six years old and younger, weigh less than 55 pounds, and provide their own protective gear (which is suggested but not mandatory). A waiver must also be signed by a parent or guardian. The cost for entry is $25.
The rodeo will be located at the Gateway shopping center parking lot at 2210 U.S. Highway 43 in Winfield.
There will be live music throughout the weekend. On Friday night, the 15th annual Mule Night Bluegrass Jamboree will begin behind the R.W. Harris store.
Logan Merchant will be performing at Pizza Bar Restaurant from 6-8.
Also at 6, Josiah Rodda will be performing on the stage behind Citizens Bank, followed by Secondhand Luck from 8:15-10:15.
On Saturday, the Bama Dancers will be performing behind Citizens Bank, followed by Showstoppers Dance Co. & Dynamic Dance from 10-11, Tremayne from 11:30-1:30 and finally Song and Dance from 1:30-2:00.
While many vendor slots have been sold out, anyone interested can check for availability on the City of Winfield’s website.
Information, a list of Mule Day’s sponsors, and event/vendor registration forms can be found on the city’s website at winfieldcity.org/
See complete story in the Journal Record.