'Tara in Texas'

Highlights of
the Gone With the Wind
Weekend - Oct. 10th-12th, 2003

Tara in Texas officially began with check-in for registered guests on Friday, October 10. Guests arrived in Jefferson from across the great State of Texas and as far away as New Jersey, Florida, and California. Other states represented were Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Missouri, Ohio, and Virginia.

TEXAS BARBECUE


BBQ serving line in Lions Park
Left to right:  Larry Weaver, Lynn and
Rhett Butler with their truck in the background

A Texas barbecue took place Friday evening in Lions Park across the street from Scarlett O'Hardy's.  Serving their famous barbecue and all the trimmings was Jefferson's Riverport Bar-B-Que.


Barky Blue Butler

One of the highlights of the event was the Gone With the Wind show truck owned by Rhett Butler Trucking of Andalusia, Alabama. The 18- wheeler, painted with air-brushed murals depicting scenes from the motion picture and driven by Larry  Weaver, arrived in Jefferson on Wednesday night. The show truck was the back-drop for the Texas barbecue,  and Rhett Butler  took the microphone to tell visitors about his truck which was making its first visit to a GWTW-themed event. As a way of saying thanks for the undeniable presence of the show truck, Mayor Ned Fratangelo declared Mr. Butler's birthday, Sunday, October 12, RHETT BUTLER DAY in Jefferson.

 

CAMMIE KING DAY
Saturday, October 11, 2003

A silver-screen star did fall on Jefferson when the actress who portrayed one of moviedom's best-remembered characters, Bonnie Blue Butler in Gone With the Wind, was guest of honor at Tara in Texas.

Cammie King, beloved by moviegoers everywhere for playing the doomed daughter of Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler who was thrown from her pony and killed while trying to jump, presented "Tea with Bonnie Blue Butler," a delightful hour packed with her memories of making the movie, anecdotes about the film and its stars, and behind-the-scenes accounts to a sell-out crowd of over 300 in The Jeffersonian Institute on Saturday afternoon. Prior to the program, a proclamation from Jefferson's mayor Ned Fratangelo was read by Susan Fratangelo declaring October 11 CAMMIE KING DAY in Jefferson.

 

COSTUME GALA AND OLD SOUTH DINNER


Jim and Charlotte McLaughlin, Randy and Bobbie Hardy, and Dudley Barnes as John Marsh

Reese and Ronna Reed and their At Your Service staff from Marshall continued their tradition of creating evenings to remember by bringing the Old South to Jefferson on Saturday night.


Aunt Pittypat and Gerald O'Hara greet Bonnie Blue at the costume gala

Pantaloon girls, Mandy Daniels and Holly Broadrick, pose with George Terrell in his rendition of Scarlett's drapery dress
A sumptuous buffet, beautiful floral arrangements, and fabulous Civil War band music presented by Hood's Texas Brigade Brass Band from Hill College in Hillsboro set the stage for an unforgettable evening.
Frank Kennedy (Mitch Whitington) and Melanie after-the-baby (Tami Whitington) pose with Cammie King

Hillsboro natives Bobbie Hardy and Ann Barnes pose with Hood's Texas Brigade Brass Band members Bosque Barge, Chris Bergman, Gabe Hinojosa, Allen Howard, Randall Jones, Jacob Mannis, Dallas Marshall, Keeley Myrick, John Panting, Jonathan Rubio, and Wesley Whitsell, and Director Phillip Lowe, far right.

 

There were many Scarlett look-alikes, Southern belles, and Confederate soldiers. Frank Kennedy came wrapped in an old quilt. In addition to numerous Belle Watlings, also in attendance were Aunt Pittypat, India Wilkes, Melanie and her new baby, and Gerald O'Hara after he lost his mind. The last chicken in Atlanta was strutting her stuff. 

The real Mr. and Mrs. Rhett Butler came from Andalusia, Alabama. Serving dinner wine were ushers from Loew's Grand Theatre. Margaret Mitchell was accompanied by her husband, John Marsh, and, to everyone's surprise, there was one Yankee soldier!
"Tea with Bonnie Blue Butler" guests in the CVA courtyard on Saturday afternoon

Celebrity judges for the costume contest were: 

Herb Bridges, world's leading GWTW authority 
Cammie King, GWTW cast member
Darnelle Vanghel, curator of GWTW costumes at The Harry Ransom Center, Austin 
John Wiley, Jr., editor/publisher of The Scarlett Letter
Randy Hardy, janitor at Scarlett O'Hardy's GWTW Museum


Costume Contest Winners
Scarlett look-alike, Randa Schmitt
Most authentic costume, Ann Barnes as Margaret Mitchell
Most original costume, Lisa Barry as the last chicken in Atlanta
Best dressed man, Delbert Johnson
Best dressed woman, Charlene Wray
Rhett Butler look-alike, Jim Lovick
Seated, George W. Terrell, Jr., winner of special judges award for creativity


The Tara cake, a masterpiece created by At Your Service, was cut by Cammie King.

For the grand finale, Jay and Lora Weber, accompanied by Hood's Texas Brigade Brass Band, taught guests the Virginia Reel and other period dances in the CVA courtyard.

GUEST SPEAKERS

Mary Jane Sinclair, author of The Films of Leslie Howard, discussed the life and career of the British actor chosen to play Ashley Wilkes in GWTW. A professional harpist for thirty years, Mary Jane entertained the audience by playing "Tara's Theme."

George W. Terrell, Jr., a college professor from Gadsden, Alabama, showed those in attendance why he has been honored as Alabama's Professor of the Year in his presentation of Gone With the Wind Remembered. George is a collector of GWTW memorabilia, especially all things-Bonnie Blue.

Herb Bridges, the world-renowned collector, lecturer, author and general expert on the subject of GWTW, kept the audience entranced on Sunday morning with his program, Gone With the Wind: The Three-Day Premiere in Atlanta. Jefferson city administrator Jay Stokes presented Mr. Bridges with a key to the city because he inspired Bobbie Hardy to begin her collection of GWTW memorabilia which ultimately became a Jefferson museum.


Autograph session on Sunday morning

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

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