Bloomin' Temple Fest got off to a bumpy, or rainy, start Friday night, with rain & lightening holding up the festivities for a few hours before the all-clear was given at 10:30 pm.  Once the rain had cleared it was full throttle.

I'm guessing by the looks of this photo that people assume we recycle. That's the only reason I can think someone would... you know what? Now that I look at it, it's actually an improvement. It looks like Andy Warhol-art. Photo by Jamie Garrett

You need to look no further than the US 105 van to see what kind of party went down Saturday night.  When sunrise hit Saturday morning it was evident it was going to be a beautiful day, and we certainly weren't disappointed.  Families, and friends of families, came out in drove to enjoy an annual tradition in Central Texas.  The laughter of kids on the carnival rides, along with the smell of carnival food, filled the air from mid-morning all the way until the music started at 7 pm.

Of course we can't get to Saturday night without talking about the Texaco Country Showdown.  The Kirk Baxley Band took top honors in the competition that will now send the band to the statewide competition.  Our thanks to all the bands that made it a tough competition, and thanks to Rita Ballou for hosting the shindig.

Once the shadows began to creep over downtown Temple, you knew things were about to get kicked up a few notches with the likes of Brian Gowan & Leroy Parnell leading into a power-packed set from the Randy Rogers Band.  The band hasn't played a gig in Central Texas in a while, and Central Texas welcomed Randy and Co. back with open arms.  At least that's what I could hear through the madness at the beer tent.

When I noticed the beer tent was being overrun with fans that were upset they were missing the show, myself and about a dozen other Townsquare Media employees jumped in and spent the next few hours in a constant fury of ticket-taking & beer can opening/bottle cap twisting.  The fingernails on both my index fingers were rubbed raw by the time I cracked my final beer.  Unfortunately, that was the last beer I'd crack open that night.

Bloomin' Temple ended for those of us working (both employees of TSM & the all-important volunteers) well after midnight, and thanks to Texas' crazy laws cutting off the sale of booze after midnight I was left with a single glass of wine at an establishment downtown that called "last call" immediately after handing me my first glass.  Bummer.  Of course I didn't think ahead and have ANYTHING left at the house, so I dozed off early Mother's Day Sunday morning sober as a preacher, and I woke up Sunday morning feeling as if the whole festival (aside from mother nature's impact Friday night) was a success, and from the input I've heard from those in attendance, it was a good time.

Thanks to all those that volunteered their time.  Thanks to my fellow Town Square employees, especially Rodney & Caroline, for countless hours making sure every "i" was dotted and every "t" crossed.  Well done.  Thanks go out to all those that endured the weather Friday night, and big thanks to those that made Bloomin' Temple Fest their home-away-from-home Saturday, setting up their chairs close to the stage early in the afternoon, or letting the kids go wild at the carnival.  You made this a memorable, safe & fun-filled Bloomin' Temple Fest.

But seriously, aluminum beer bottle on the US 105 van's radio antenna?  C'mon, guys!!