Hundreds of Elvis Presley fans from across the country made their way to Branson this past weekend for the 14th Annual Branson Elvis Festival at Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater.
The festival featured a variety of events and shows for attendees to participate in between Friday, July 23 to Sunday, July 25. The highlight of the festival was the 2021 Branson Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest.
On Saturday night, nearly every seat inside Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater was filled as folks gathered for the 2021 show. For this year’s competition, 15 Elvis Tribute Artists performed for the judges for the chance to become the Branson representative for the 2021 Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest next month in Graceland.
After the first round of the contest, only five of the 15 artists were selected to move on to the finals. After performing another two songs apiece, the judges were given the difficult decision of selecting the Branson champion. The 2021 winner of the Branson Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest was Brooke Wright. Coming in second and third respectively were Robert Washington and Matthew Boyce. Rounding out the top five were Rick Lenzi and Josh Davis.
The rest of the weekend also drew large crowds. The festivities kicked off on Friday afternoon with the Memories of Elvis show presented by Wink and Sandy Martindale. During the show, each of the Martindale’s recounted their respective personal tales of friendship and even romance with Elvis.
The remainder of Friday evening included a meet and greet with the contestants of the 2021 Branson Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest, as well as the Legends of Concert show and the Dean Z-Ultimate Elvis show later that night.
Throughout the day on Saturday, attendees were given the opportunity to venture through the Elvis Vendor Village, which featured a multitude of Elvis Presley memorabilia and more.
Saturday afternoon, Ronnie McDowell took the stage at the theatre to perform his all request show. Being one of the few men responsible for continuing to keep the singing voice of Elvis alive in movies and more, McDowell performed many of Elvis’ biggest hits as they were requested by the audience.
To finish out the weekend of festivities, Ryan Pelton presented his show, You’ll Never Walk Along, a tribute to the gospel music that inspired Elvis on Sunday morning. Pelton was joined on stage by several of his fellow Legends in Concert performers.
To learn more about the Branson Elvis Festival hist bransonelvisfestival.com.