East Texans gather for 84th Yamboree celebration

Local News

GILMER, Texas (KETK) – The 84th East Texas Yamboree started on Wednesday, and people from all over East Texas are thoroughly enjoying the festivities.

The East Texas Yamboree began 84 years ago. This year, it is making a comeback after being canceled last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nancy Boyd of Gilmer, Texas, has been coming to the Yamboree for decades.

“I come every year. I was born and raised here, and this is just homecoming. Everybody comes home for the Yamboree. It’s just such a big thing. I’ve been coming for about 75 years, I imagine,” she said.

The event has grown over time, attracting around 100,000 people of all ages. Jordan Nelson is a 13-year-old boy who enjoys the event.

“I’m out here with my family. We’re kind of enjoying this tradition that’s been here for a while now, riding rides and eating great food,” said Nelson. “Today, I’m going to be coming out of my shell, but usually I like the smaller rides and just the games, and I like to site shop.”

There is something for everyone at the Yamboree, including livestock shows, a carnival, and a parade.

“It’s just a good thing for everyone to come out and have a good time,” said Boyd.

The East Texas Yamboree has been happening since 1935, and 2021 marks the 84th year. The annual celebration is held on the third weekend of October.

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