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Cash’s Bicentennial Suit Headed To Dyess Event

JOHNNY CASH AT THE CLEVELAND COUNTY BICENTENNIAL PARADE – Country music icon and Kingsland native Johnny Cash (right) with his wife, June Carter Cash (to Cash’s left), waves to the crowd as they ride in a horse-drawn carriage down Main Street in downtown Rison during a parade for the Cleveland County Bicentennial Celebration held in March 1976. The suit that Cash is wearing will be on display at the Johnny Cash Heritage Festival to be held Oct. 19-21 at his boyhood home at Dyess. Pictured to the left is Johnny’s father, Rison native Ray Cash. (Photo courtesy of Stan Sadler and the Cleveland County Herald archives)

RISON – Fresh off an exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, the suit that country music legend Johnny Cash wore during his American Bicentennial concert at Rison in 1976 will be among the pieces on display at the inaugural Johnny Cash Heritage Festival set for next weekend, Oct. 19-21, at the Dyess Colony in Northeast Arkansas.

Wayne Cash, a Cleveland County native who is a relative of Johnny Cash and helps keep track of the suit for the Cleveland County Historical Society, said the black suit emblazoned with dual eagles across the chest and stars around the collar and along the pant legs will be on display inside the Dyess Colony Visitor Center that is associated with Johnny Cash’s boyhood home at Dyess.

This will be the first time an event honoring Johnny Cash has been held at Dyess. Previous events celebrating Cash’s connection to Northeast Arkansas were held at Jonesboro.

The three-day festival will consist of a symposium on the people, events and music that influenced Cash, as well as a series of concerts from the various genres of music that had an impact on the American music icon.

The symposium featuring one- hour lectures on his life begin at 1 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19, and at 9 a.m. Friday, Oct. 20. The final presentation at 4 p.m. Friday is entitled “Becoming Johnny Cash,” which will look at the influence that his father, Rison native Ray Cash, had on his son.

In addition, there will be demonstrations, tours, food vendors, and arts and crafts vendors on hand.

The festival will climax with a series of concerts on Saturday, Oct. 21, in a field next to Cash’s boyhood home at Dyess. His daughter, country music artist Rosanne Cash, and longtime friend Kris Kristofferson will be the featured guests performing at 3 p.m. Other Saturday concerts include Arkansas native Buddy Jewel at 12:15 p.m. and the “Cash Homecoming” featuring Joanne Cash and Tommy Cash at 1:30 p.m.

To read the full article, see the October 11, 2017 print or e-Herald edition of The Herald.

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