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Main Event: Weekend in sights for Shootout on Whiskey Row

Dr. Buck and the Wild Bunch perform as part of the 13th annual Whiskey Row Shoot and National Day of the Cowboy in Prescott Saturday, July 28, 2018. (Les Stukenberg/Courier, file)

Dr. Buck and the Wild Bunch perform as part of the 13th annual Whiskey Row Shoot and National Day of the Cowboy in Prescott Saturday, July 28, 2018. (Les Stukenberg/Courier, file)

The Prescott Regulators and Their Shady Ladies have their guns drawn, ready for the 14th annual Shootout on Whiskey Row this weekend.

It’s going to be different this year in that the reenactments aren’t a competition, said Neil Thomas, president of the Prescott Regulators. For the first 13 years, they brought in five or six groups to compete against each other, Thomas said.

“What we’ve noticed over the years is that the reenactments tend to be really serious, they’re not as entertaining or family oriented or fun as they should be,” he said. “A number of years ago we got involved in a couple of events that they had dropped that idea, just had brought them in to entertain and that’s what this is. This is 100% entertainment this time around.”

Dr. Buck and the Wild Bunch perform as part of the 13th annual Whiskey Row Shoout and National Day of the Cowboy in Prescott Saturday, July 28, 2018. (Les Stukenberg/Courier)

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Dr. Buck and the Wild Bunch perform as part of the 13th annual Whiskey Row Shootout and National Day of the Cowboy in Prescott Saturday, July 28, 2018. (Les Stukenberg/Courier)

This year, there’s eight performing groups and more than 100 reenactors coming in to make downtown Prescott look like it did in the 1880s and 1890s, Thomas said. Four food vendors and 21 vendors are expected as well, he said.

Held Saturday and Sunday, July 27-28 at the corner of Montezuma and Goodwin streets, the event will see a live shotgun wedding at 1 p.m. Saturday, Thomas said.

“(It) should really be something that Prescott hasn’t seen since the 1870s or 80s,” he said, noting that it’s an actual wedding.

When it comes to their reenactments, Thomas said The Prescott Regulators and Their Shady Ladies, as the official Old West ambassadors of the City of Prescott and the Prescott Chamber of Commerce, try to dig up something that fits in locally with Whiskey Row and the history that’s here. One they do is a reenactment of the only documented gun battle that happened in town in the early 1870s that involved Virgil Earp, he said. A couple of bad guys came into town and were chased to Granite Creek where Earp shot them, Thomas said.

Another one, which he said they’re doing Sunday, is called Memories. It’s a fantasy about what happened to the guys who survived, and the characters are reminiscing in the Pioneer Home in the 1930s, Thomas said.

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Dr. Buck and the Wild Bunch perform with an audience member as part of the 13th annual Whiskey Row Shoout and National Day of the Cowboy in Prescott Saturday, July 28, 2018. (Les Stukenberg/Courier)

Before the wedding, there’s a fashion show, he said. It starts at noon and features Old West fashion from the basic cowboy to high Victorian fashion, Thomas said.

“At the end, we usually dress Governor Goodwin’s wife, getting her ready for the ball,” he said. “This year, we’ll be dressing the mother of the bride getting ready for the wedding.”

Admission to the 14th annual Shootout on Whiskey Row, which starts at 8 a.m., is free. However, The Regulators and Their Shady Ladies do ask that people contribute to their scholarship fund for military members and their families, Thomas said. It’s not for just combat veterans, but anyone who served, their spouses and their kids, he said. It’s through Yavapai College and the organization has paid for $3,000 worth of scholarships per year through the shootout, Thomas said.

For more information about the 14th annual Shootout on Whiskey Row, visit www.prescottregulators.org.

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