The 2020 Pat Garrett Western Heritage Festival is February 29, 2020, at the Rio Grande Theatre, Las Cruces, New Mexico. This is an appropriate day for the Festival as Pat Garrett – the man who killed Billy the Kid – was himself killed on leap day, February 29, 1908, on a barren stretch of road between his Home Ranch and Las Cruces.
Ticket $10 – Good for All Events Including Movie
Saturday, February 29, 2020: 12:00 pm – SING THE LEGEND. A live musical presentation by Dan Crow, John Wood, Ash Soular, and Scott Galbreath. Crow and company will perform 9 historic western songs. For each song, the presenters will give a history of the song, including information such as the artists who created the work, what historic western characters or events are addressed in the song, the circumstances in which it was first performed, and the popular reception. Songs include: LAWDOG LAMENT, THE COFFIN NOTE, BOB FITZSIMMONS, TOM HORN, RODEO LADY, LATIGO, KNOCKIN’ ON HEAVEN’S DOOR, and SIDEKICKS & SADDLE PALS.
2:00 pm – DISAPPEARANCE OF COLONEL FOUNTAIN. Presentation by David Thomas of the events leading up to and following the disappearance and apparent killing of Colonel Albert J. Fountain and his son Henry on February 1, 1896. The murder is New Mexico’s most famous murder.
2:30 pm – FOUNTAIN MURDER TRIAL. A reenactment by actors of the 1899 courtroom trial of the persons accused of murdering Colonel Fountain and his son. The reenactment uses the actual words of the courtroom trial.
3:30 pm – SUMMARY AND DISCUSSION. Opportunity for the audience to ask questions or make comments on the trial reenactment and its outcome.
4:00 pm – THE FOUNTAIN MURDERS – WHAT ANSWERS DO WE HAVE TODAY? Presentation by Karl Laumbach, Human Systems Research, who will summarize what he has learned about the Fountain murders after decades of research.
7:00 pm – Movie: THE LEFT HANDED GUN, 1958, directed by Arthur Penn. Paul Newman as Billy the Kid and John Dehner as Garrett. At the time the movie was made, many believed that Billy was left-handed because they did not realize the famous tintype of Billy reversed the image left to right.
Brought to you by the Dona Ana Historical Society and the Rio Grande Theatre