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Fashion takes center stage at Bootfest (video)

By Bianca Montes
Oct. 4, 2013 at 5:04 a.m.
Updated Oct. 5, 2013 at 5:05 a.m.

Trace Laza, 4, of Bloomington, rolls around in his blue, inflatable ball at the Water Ball pool put on by No Fear Sports at Bootfest in Victoria.

Although Kylie Reed is only 10 years old, the strawberry blonde knows what makes a true Texan: Cowboy boots.

"Texans have to have their boots," she said, showing off her pink kickers Friday night at Bootfest, "and a hat to match."

Honoring the region's rich ranching heritage, Bootfest kicked off Friday evening with good music, better food and a whole lot of fashion.

The free, two-day festival in DeLeon Plaza features boot making demonstrations, an over-the-top corral for children to play in and a full schedule of performances by artists such as the Turnpike Troubadours, Sarah Rivas and Jerrod Niemann.

Tracy Guardipee, 52, of Victoria, bought her boots during a midlife crisis. "I was turning 50, and I wanted to be pretty and different."

Her storytelling boots have everything from a rose to the words "Ride 'Em" painted on them. "I feel like I stand out," she said. "I love them."

Pablo Trujillo, 24, of Victoria, plays in a country band and has lived in Texas his entire life but never owned a pair of boots until recently.

"I always wanted some," he said. So he and his girlfriend drove to Nocona, her hometown, and picked out his first pair of Larry Mahan's.

"I plan to wear them out some on stage and give them some character," he said.

Kali Gutierrez, 26, drove in from Tivoli with her family for the event. "We don't ever wear boots," she said. "But I got a pair just for Bootfest."

Gutierrez kept her look simple with light brown leather boots with modest detailing. "I didn't want to be too over the top," she said.

As for her daughter, that was another story. Four-year-old Mariah rocked a pair of pink boots bedazzled with glittery stars.

She loved them.

Roy Thompson, 64, of Victoria, said his boots embody hard work and a little style - after all, the man was wearing rock-star red boots.

"Red goes with everything," he said.

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