By Marlys Good
HATS X went off without a hitch Saturday night; the three talented Country Music Hall of Famers, Paulette Carlson, Lacy J. Dalton and Gary Morris were crowd-pleasers. Their different styles and unique offerings got an enthusiastic response from the capacity crowd, and the crowd that included attendees from 17 states, gave generously in the silent and live auctions, the raffles, 50/50, Heads or Tails, purchasing a ticket(s) or a table. Generous donations have also been received from people who believe in the cause but could not be here for the event.
Final numbers have not been tabulated, but an estimated $70,000 was raised to help Big Horn County residents, who find themselves in need of a “hand across the saddle.”
Comments heard around the community hall also included praise for the multi-talented Dale Poune, who accompanied both Carlson and Dalton. He makes his stringed instruments sing. One man was heard to say, “I could sit and listen to him all night.”
Wilford and Beverly Brimley, co-founders of the charity, were in attendance and expressed their appreciation for the continued support of the towns from all across the Big Horn Basin, in the goal of offering a “hands up, not a hand out” to people who through no fault of their own, find themselves in need of help.
The evening went flawlessly – from the time the doors opened at 3 p.m. until they closed around 10. There were several small “glitches” that went unnoticed by everyone but the organizers, and they were smoothed out seamlessly.
The meal prepared by Chris Dalin and his “couldn’t do it without them” helpers was delicious and the 400-plus diners were served quickly and efficiently by volunteers from the Greybull and Riverside volleyball teams and their respective coaches.
Comments, letters, phone calls and emails were received from dozens of fans. These included:
From a couple from Denver, Colo., who are avid Gary Morris fans and heard about the event over the website, Holly Hipp said, it was a “pleasure to meet everyone and to support HATS. We had a wonderful time and have terrific memories of our trip. Greybull is the friendliest town in the west.”
One group, comprised of people from California, Wisconsin and South Dakota, learned about the event from Lacy J Dalton’s website. Dawn Luckett said, “We had a great time. The event was great as were the Greybull Motel and Lisa’s.”
Closer to home, “This was my first year but not my last. What a great time. Wonderful people, top-notch entertainment, welcoming atmosphere, delicious food and the best MC. Thank you for a wonderful time,” wrote Sandi Morris of Byron.
Closer to home, Greybullite Linda Cooper said: “Unbelievable to have three hall of famers in one place – OUR PLACE. Wow! They brought tears to my eyes all night. Such an intimate venue for those amazing showmen and to have them so close is priceless!”
And from Cody, Craig Drevecky said, “It was my wife’s and my first HATS event. We would love to make it a tradition!”
After the dust settles and volunteers take a deep breath, they will be looking ahead to HATS XI. It will be hard to surpass HATS X, but every effort will be put forth to make it just as entertaining.