There were a lot of music festivals in Dallas this weekend. Most of them could have happened anywhere -- did happen in many other places, in fact. But not Cooler-N-Hell Fest. Set at The Ewing Family Ranch and named after a Ray Wylie Hubbard song, Cooler-N-Hell Fest was a distinctly Dallas experience.
Southfork Ranch is an uncommon place for a music festival. It's a tourist attraction, really, complete with multiple gift shops and guided tour trolleys and signage marking notable locations from the TV show Dallas. It's an even more uncommon place for a music festival dedicated to Texas Country, a genre of music whose ethos could fairly be described as, "What Wouldn't JR Ewing Do?"
But it's not hard to imagine how 95.3 The Range decided to host the event at Southfork anyway. The idea of the Dallas mansion hosting a lineup of Nashville dropouts (I say that with utmost respect) probably made them laugh, and so did putting up a bunch of Christmas decorations in August. Here were a few little things that made Cooler-N-Hell Fest stand out from, say, the offerings in Fair Park this weekend.
5. Baby animals Because it's freakin' adorable, that's why.
4. Live from the bathtubs.com wrestling ring. Most of the day's performers played solo in a wrestling ring in front of the main stage. It was, as several artists noted, kinda bouncy.
3. Dancing snowman Note the cowboy boots.
2. Zane Williams McKinney's Zane Williams is a talented songwriter and a great performer, sure. But you should see the man chug a beer onstage, which he did at the end of "99 Bottles." Not the most subtle moment, but it brought the house down anyway.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the Observer's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Dallas's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
"The trouble with irony is not everybody gets it."