Fall Feral Follies Friday, Oct. 24 • Festival & Cook Off, Saturday Oct. 25
Ben Wheeler Arts & Historic District Foundation (BWA & HDF) is gearing up for its town to host the 7th Annual Fall Feral Hog Festival, World Championship Wild Hog Cook Off, Fall Feral Follies and Hog Queen Coronation, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 24 – 25.
Since 2008, BWA & HDF a non-profit, 501 c (3) organization has been putting on the Fall Feral Hog Festival, which includes a morning parade, an afternoon cook-off, music all over town and a follies show the night prior to the festival.
During the Fall Feral Follies, Hog Queen contestants compete for the crown—a chance to reign as the official Fall Feral Hog Festival Queen for a year. Since anyone age 18 and older can compete, last year, Mr. Ruston Frazier stole the crown from the ladies after he brought the house down with his rendition of Tom Jones’ 1971 hit, “She’s a Lady.” The “Queen” represents the prospering town of Ben Wheeler throughout the year during all of its main events.
This year’s fun kicks off with The Fall Feral Follies and Hog Queen Coronation set for Friday, Oct. 24, 7 p.m. at Moore’s Store (located at 1551 FM 279, Ben Wheeler, TX 75754) with musical guests Clay Thrash & Jeff Allen. The Master of Ceremonies for the 2014 Follies is Mr. Joseph Drew. The fun ends at midnight and there’s a $10 cover.
The Forge Bar & Grill (located at 1610 FM 279, Ben Wheeler, TX 75754) also hosts hog-wild, folly fun Oct. 24, featuring music by Guthrie Kennard and Julie Bonk from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. with no cover.
The Parade,Festivaland Cook-Off take place Saturday, Oct. 25, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with live music on the Pickin’ Porch, The Forge and The Forge Grist Mill (the outdoor beer garden adjacent to The Forge) throughout the day from favorite local and regional bands.
The music lineup for the Oct. 25, festival includes:
Pickin’ Porch (no cover)
11:00 a.m. to Noon Ben Lowery & Texas Express
12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Texas RoundUp
2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Kid Icarus Project
The Forge Bar & Grill
3:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Craig Wallace
The Forge Grist Mill
6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Grammy Award Winning Artist – Ginny Mac
8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Wesley Pruitt Band
10 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Charlie Robison
($15 advance tickets at outhousetickets.com or $20 door)
9:00 p.m. to Midnight Ben Lowery & Texas Express (no cover)
On festival grounds that day, in addition to the music, guests will find an array of fun for the family including hog-fan-favorites: a catch-a-pig contest and a hog calling contest.
For those who love to shop, there will be a variety of vendors selling one-of-a-kind finds and enough food vendors to keep stomachs full all day long.
The World Championship Wild Hog Cook-Off will be underway during the festival with cook-off contestants competing for a chance to reign as the supreme smoker king of wild hog meat.
The feral hog theme of Ben Wheeler’s weekend festival is meant to poke fun at the continually, ever expanding, state-wide-population of wild hogs. The late Brooks Gremmels, co-founder of Ben Wheeler Arts & Historic District Foundation and the founder of this hog-wild event came up with the festival as a way for his community to poke fun at the growing nuisance saying, “We’re just making lemonade out of lemons.”
Feral hogs are a large problem in Van Zandt County and much of Texas and North America. Additionally, the omnivores—they eat other plants and animals—are a multi-million-dollar problem because they can disrupt both livestock and farming operations by damaging facilities and fences, and trampling and eating crops.
For those wanting to participate in Hog Fest 2014 as a Hog Queen Contestant, Vendor, Parade Participant or Cook Off Contestant email email@example.com or download forms here:
Ben Wheeler Arts & Historic District Foundation is also welcoming sponsors the 2014 festival. If you or your organization are interested in sponsoring Hog Fest 2014, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 903.833.1070.