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Blowout Benefit For Mr. Gene Owens Photos by Arena Action Photography A benefit was held Saturday, November 17, at Rafter G Arena in Michie, Tenn. for Gene Owens of Selmer, Tenn. who underwent surgery for brain cancer in September. Mr. Gene is well known throughout the South East among the barrel and pole bending circuit. He is currently recuperating at home and continuing treatments. At the benefit, he was greeted by his great many friends. There was a twinkle in his eyes as he watched the barrel races which were the first events of the fun filled day. The barrel race was divided into a youth and open class. There was also a calf roping and team roping that followed. The winners won halters, trophies, belt buckles and money. Mr. Gene, who has won many awards himself presented the awards to all the winners. During his horse riding career, Mr. Gene has won more than 15 saddles and 30 buckles, but presenting awards brought him more delight than receiving them. In the true spirit of the day, most of the winners donated their winnings back to the benefit. Other events of the day included a calf scramble and money the hard way. The calf scramble was divided into two age groups. The little kids and little calves running around, falling down and bumping into each other was fun for everyone. The laughter was loud during the money the hard way event. As the older boys (stumbling, falling and trying to run) scrambled to get a $50 bell of a steers horn, some fell on their faces and others on their behinds. It was a good thing it wasn't a timed event. Whole Hog Bar-B-Q sandwiches and plates were served with baked beans and cole slaw. The Bar-B-Q was provided by Bubbas Bar-B-Q of Lexington, Tenn. It was hickory slow cooked, "Ten-nessee Style" and mouth watering delicious. An auction and cake walk were a lot of fun for all to participate in. There were hundreds of items for the auction, all donated by businesses and individuals in the area. The cakes were plentiful as well as beautiful. Pony rides and buggy rides brought smiles to faces young and old. Special entertainment for the day included lots of local talent. Butch Owens, Gene's brother, tricked the crowd with his comedy and impersonations. The entertainment continued as Rhonda Lambert, Courtney Lambert, Kelly Wheeler, Natalie Beard, Nikki Anthony and Amanda Griffin all showcased their talents. Many people worked very hard to organize the benefit and are very much appreciated for their efforts, as well as the many businesses who contributed to the success of the benefit. Everything said and done, it was a super fun filled day for everyone who attended. And all for one very special gentleman, Mr. Gene Owens. If anyone would like to send a card, the address is 1642 Connie Smith Road, Selmer, Tenn. 38375.

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