Willie Nelson, Fourth of July Picnic 2004, Fort Worth, Texas

Willie Nelson leaves the stage in Fort Worth after receiving a city flag and proclamation by Councilman Jim Lane.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Monday, July 5, 2004
A Welcome For Willie
Malcalm Mayhew, Caren M . Penland

It was hot and grimy, crowded and loud in the Stockyards at Willie Nelson’s 31st annual Fourth of July Picnic, a first for Cowtown.

Here’s how it breaks down, by the numbers:

  • 3 people arrested as of 11 p.m., by Fort Worth police
  • 5 people spotted wearing fake Willie Nelson braids
  • 11 mind-numbing guitar solos delivered by Los Lonely Boys
  • 93 degrees, the official high temperature Sunday
  • 101 degrees, the heat index, or how hot it felt
  • 125 estimated number of people (one of whom was taken to a hospital), treated for heat-related ailments by 8:30 p.m., according to Fort Worth Fire Chief Wendell Lancaster
  • 875 miles driven, roughly, by a Willie fan from Casper, Wyoming, to see the concert
  • 20,600 estimated crowd keeping Willie company at Sunday’s picnic
  • 50,000 bottles of speciality labeled “Willie Water” sold by 2 p.m. Sunday
  • 165,000 cans of beer delivered to booths at the Stockyards
  • 10:45 p.m. time when fireworks began with Willie singing Whiskey River.  “We might like to do this again next year if y’all hae us.” Willie told the crowd

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