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Legends of the Falls festival in October packs in more fun

Sons of the Republic of Texas

The Sons of the Republic of Texas will fire off one of the group's functioning cannons at Legends of the Falls in Cottonwood Shores on Oct. 22-23. Courtesy photo

The Legends of the Falls Festival has even more historic entertainment lined up when the second annual theatrical hayride takes place in Cottonwood Shores on Oct. 22-23. A flint knapper, the Sons of the Republic of Texas, and the Buggy Barn Museum in Blanco will join a pistol-twirling gunslinger and more at the Community Center, 4111 Cottonwood Drive.

“It’s important that we stay connected to the stories of our early Native Americans and pioneers because their history is our history,” said Debbie Holloway, the moderator for the hayride. 

The first Legends of the Falls took place in the fall of 2021 after Holloway and a friend pitched the idea of a historic hayride to the city of Cottonwood Shores. It was a hit. At the time, Holloway promised an even bigger event the following year, a prediction that seems to be coming true. 


Knapped Texas
A knapped version of Texas, created by Hill Country sculptor Robert Ratliff, who will be giving demonstrations on the ancient art of knapping at Legends of the Falls in Cottonwood Shores on Oct. 22-23. The technique Ratliff uses for creating his work is the same used by cultures from around the world to make stone tools such as arrowheads, knives, and axes. Courtesy photo

Central Texas sculptor Robert Ratliff specializes in the primitive technique of “knapping,” a method of creating stone objects by breaking or chipping away at a sharp brittle stone with another stone. Native Americans used this technique to create tools such as axes, knives, and arrowheads.

Ratliff will give demonstrations on knapping at a booth during Legends of the Falls, teaching the basics of this ancient art. His work can be viewed on his Facebook page @Apocalithics


Buggy Barn Museum
The Buggy Barn Museum is coming to the Legends of the Falls theatrical hayride and festival Oct. 22-23 in Cottonwood Shores. The museum is located in Blanco, where it has over 200 buggies, wagons, and carriages set in a replica Old West town. Some of its collection dates to the 1860s, and a few pieces were used in the epic Westerns ‘Lonesome Dove’ and ‘True Grit.’ Courtesy photo 

The Buggy Barn Museum in Blanco will display some of its wagons, buggies, carriages, and memorabilia. The museum’s entire collection has more than 200 wagons dating to the 1860s along with some used in the epic Westerns “True Grit” and “Lonesome Dove.” 

Museum staff will be on hand at Legends of the Falls to teach visitors about pioneer transportation as Texas was being settled.

Alongside the wagons and buggies, Pistol Packin’ Paula will be decked out in Old West clothes and twirling her Cimarron .45-caliber pistols. 


Also dressed in Old West attire, the Sons of the Republic of Texas will share stories from the state’s fabled fight for independence from Mexico. Stories will be punctuated with the firing of the group’s historic, functioning cannon.

Members can trace their heritage to ancestors who lived in the Republic of Texas prior to Dec. 29, 1845, when Texas joined the United States as the 28th state. The organization was founded in 1893.


Food and drink will be available for purchase during the event with proceeds going to the Cottonwood Shores Volunteer Fire Department. 

Face painting, make-and-take cornhusk dolls, artifacts from the Upper Highland Lakes Nature Center and the Llano Uplift Archaeological Society, and more will be on site.

Tickets for the hayride, which is restricted to ages 9 years and older, go on sale Oct. 3. Tickets are $10. The festival is free and open to all ages.