Cowboy Day to return for its 14th year

Published 5:05 pm Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

By MEG HERNDON | Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – Columbiana Cowboy Day, one of Columbiana’s most beloved traditions, is set to take place on Saturday, Feb. 26 with lots of festivities lined up from 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

The free festival, which began in 2008, takes place throughout Columbiana and is jam-packed with tons of activities for families to enjoy such as a chili cookoff, corn hole, a rodeo, hobby horse racing, the Cowboy Parade, a wild west shoot off and much more.

“It’s always just a really, really good day for families, and we love seeing young families enjoying Columbiana,” said Ali Payne manager of Community Affairs and Senior Services with the city of Columbiana.

Payne said that Columbiana Cowboy Day has become one of Columbiana’s biggest events with last year bringing in over 2,500 people to the town. People from all over the state come to Columbiana to attend, some attendees even come from Georgia.

“It’s really a draw from central Alabama,” Payne said. “Because there’s just really not a lot of free things for families to do together anymore.”

The day will begin at 9 a.m. and a cowboy skit will start off the festivities at 9:30 a.m. on the Main Stage at Old Mill Square Park.

There will be eight food trucks and 54 vendors for guests to peruse that will include items for sale such as food, arts and crafts and more.

Payne said one of her favorite parts of the parade is the hobby horse races.

“Last year we had adults compete and that was hysterical,” Payne said. “It’s just a stick horse race, and it’s the funniest and cutest part of Cowboy Day to me. Something about animals and kids, how can you not be happy?”

Columbiana Main Street will be closed from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. for the Wild West Shoot Out and the Cowboy Parade.

The parade, which usually consists of a lineup of around 100 people from all over the area, will take a new route this year. Starting at Elvin Hill Elementary, the parade will travel along East College St. to Thompson St., then East Sterret St. before turning onto Main Street and then making its way down Mildred St. where it will end.

The parade will take 45 minutes to an hour from start to finish and begin at 12 p.m.

Applicants are still being accepted to participate in the parade until Wednesday, Feb. 23.

The chili cookoff, which did not take place at Columbiana Cowboy Day last year because of COVID-19, will come back this year with a set of different rules.

Instead of participants showing up with their chili already prepared, they will now cook their recipes from scratch at the event on-site. Participants can show up as early as 8 a.m. to begin preparing. A panel of judges will determine the top three entries and People’s Choice will be determined by the greatest number of votes cast by the public.

Registration for the chili cookoff is still open until Wednesday, Feb. 23

Most of Cowboy Day will take place in Old Mill Square Park and on Main Street. The rodeo, however, will take place at the Shelby County Expo Center at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. and can only be attended with the purchase of a ticket.

To register for the parade and for the chili cookoff or to see a full schedule of the day, visit

Tickets for the rodeo can be purchased at,