Route 66 News

Roger Miller Festival moving from downtown Erick

The annual Roger Miller Festival is moving from its longtime downtown location in his adopted hometown of Erick, Oklahoma, to the Lost Creek Arena west of town on old Route 66, according to a news release from the venue.

The event — which will feature lots of live music, including Roger Miller’s son, Dean Miller — is set for Oct. 25. The festival also is getting aid and cooperation from nearby towns, including the Route 66 communities of Sayre, Oklahoma, and Shamrock, Texas.

More from the release:

Kicking off the day’s festivities is a new tradition bound to heat up old rivalries and start new ones, with the first-ever Oklahoma-vs-Texas “King of the Road Classic Car and Truck Show.” Winners in various classes will be awarded a unique 1st place prize: A custom-made, personalized Roger Miller “King of the Road” jacket. Show entries will be placed in categories such as the “Baddest Pick-Up Truck” class for the toughest, strongest and best looking trucks.

Festival goers will enjoy live music, savory food from an excellent vendor lineup and shopping with the local arts and crafts booths. Inclement weather will not hinder festivities with activities held inside the enclosed arena, excluding the car and truck show. […]

Guests may bring chairs and camp out all weekend. Additional detailed information and tickets sales will be announced soon. Fans can keep up with the festival on and Facebook.

The Lost Creek Arena hosted the inaugural Buckin Wild Music Festival in July, and drew 3,000 people. I suspect the city fathers in Erick saw those numbers and decided they could do a lot better than in downtown, where space and parking are a bit lacking.

Plus the venue’s owner, Brian Austin, has connections to the music industry and publicists — no small thing if you’re organizing what essentially is a music festival.

And in case you’re not familiar with Roger Miller, here’s a short bio:

Country music singer and songwriter legend Roger Miller came from humble beginnings on a farm near Erick, but rose to stardom in the country music world in the 1960s until his untimely death in 1992. With such legendary hits as “King of the Road” and “Dang Me,” Roger made a name for himself as an original. He also wrote #1 Hits such as “Invitation to the Blues” for other artists including Ray Price. He penned the hit Broadway musical, “Big River,” which earned seven Tony Awards in 1985. Roger Miller was voted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973 and the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1995. His iconic music was recognized with 11 Grammy Awards during his lifetime.

(Illustration of Roger Miller via Klaus Hiltscher via Flickr)


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