Cowboy Romance at Melody Ranch

Grub, poetry, costumes, and a famous location.

The Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival, which boasts about a wagon's worth of world-renown, returns to Melody Ranch from Thursday, April 22 to Sunday, April 25.

Now here's the funny thing about this famous fest. Its appeal goes beyond entertaining cowboy buffs, although there are plenty of people out there who dream of the open-range life.

Do you sit in a cubicle, thinking about poking a fire and shooing lizards and wooing under the stars? We all do, at some point.

The fest definitely has that cowboy appeal, of course, courtesy of music and dress-ups and poetry and gear and giddy-ups and movies and chuckwagon-like eats.

But pop culture fans will also like it for its film and TV connections. A lot of big- and small-screen stuff gets made at historic Melody Ranch. For example, "Deadwood." If you liked "Deadwood," and you haven't been up there, get up there. Visiting the ranch was one of the best days of our "Deadwood"-devoted life. Much less muddy/gun-fight-y than the series, but exciting.

And anyone who wants a day away from 2010 and the LA bustle should go, too. Melody Ranch and the fest really share a timelessness as well as a getaway-ess-ness. A single-day fest ticket is $20 for the grown-up 'pokes.

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