The Culture of Hee Haw

If you are a student of culture and in particular Art in Culture, then you must have your eyes open at all times to observe what is happening around you. Last night I ventured with our Sr. Adult community to a HEE HAW. You ask what a HEE HAW is? Do you remember the 1970's music/comedy TV show by the same name, where country music was sung and short comic episodes were given? It's the same thing... almost the very same thing.

This HEE HAW has been produced by a group of community people now in the Sagerton Community (north of Abilene, Tx) for over 15 years now. They have rules--you can't be in the production unless you live in the community (although most of the band was from Abilene and surrounding areas). It's a family thing from small children to grandparents.

They serve a meal of sandwiches and homemade pies before the production.  I have to say that the pies are the best part of the experience.

The Sagerton HEE HAW takes place in the Old Sagerton school that was built in the early 1900's and ceased to be a school sometime in the late 1990's.  The community has transformed the old building into a community center and kept the old theater as the prize jewel for the HEE HAW.

The doors opened at 6:30 and we listened to  an hour and half of favorite country western tunes (many that I didn't know, but the audience did) and hymns in bluegrass style. Many of the band are into their 70's and 80's and feature the local District Attorney on the guitar.

The centerpiece of the show is Minnie Pearl, the raucous emcee who does two stand up sections in the show.  This lady is 78 years old, and let's just say she and Rosie could go toe to toe.  Her jokes were a little of colored--and made me blush--but everyone laughed. (Maybe I need to relax what people think about what I say!)

After 3 hours (yes 3 hours) the production ended with GOD BLESS THE USA.   This has become such a tradition for this community and just proves that an artistic endeavor is worth it in building community and relationships.