Well, Osceola. What did you think of Country Thunder weekend? We had a great time at the three-day country music festival, rocking out to some of country’s biggest names — right here in Kissimmee, at Osceola Heritage Park. 

In case you missed our giveaway announcement in last week’s issue, we announced our winner of the Great Song Contest — St. Cloud resident Kolby U. 

Country Thunder

Kolby wrote his lyrics to the tune of Toby Keith’s hit song, “Should’ve Been a Cowboy.” 

I bet you’ve never heard of Osceola

Home of Country Thunder Florida, Toby let us

  Show ya…

Here you could’ve been a cowboy, we could teach you 

 How to rope and ride.

Come on down and stay a while, ride your pony in 

 Kissimmee, Florida’s cattle drive. 

Kolby’s lyrics won him two meet-and-greet tickets to meet the one and only Toby Keith and on-stage seating during his headlining performance on Friday night, plus general admission tickets for the rest of the weekend. 

The best part, Kobly and his plus one — his wife, of course — got to hear Toby Keith perform the song, “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” live on the Country Thunder stage. 

kolby and wife

“My wife didn’t believe that I won (the Great Song Contest) until I showed her the post on Osceola News-Gazette’s Facebook page. She was so surprised and excited,” Kolby said, adding that his wife is a big Toby Keith fan. “The experience was unbelievable, it was our first time ever having the opportunity to go backstage do a meet and greet. Watching the show from the stage is totally different experience and Toby put on a great show.” 

“The entire weekend was full of great performances but watching the Toby Keith show from the stage was definitely our favorite part. The people at Country Thunder were great and we are looking forward to going back next year,” Kolby said. 

Toby Keith wasn’t the only big name to come to Kissimmee. Headliner Luke Combs performed Saturday night and festival headliner Luke Bryan closed out the weekend on Sunday night with his hit “That’s My Kind of Night” from his 2013 album titled “Crash My Party.”

Luke Bryan ended his show just before 11 p.m., after asking the crowd, “How many of y’all have to work tomorrow?”

Rounding out the rest of the festival were artists including Jimmie Allen, High Valley, Chris Lane, Waterloo Revival, Maddie and Tae, Runaway June, Tracey Lawrence and more.  

Country Thunder also hosted on-site food and merchandise vendors all weekend on the Osceola Heritage Park grounds, while the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo took place in the Silver Spurs Arena — making this the first-ever weekend for the Kissimmee venue to host a music festival and a rodeo at the same time. 

Once again, the Osceola News-Gazette would like to thank everyone who participated in the Great Song Contest. We hope to bring our readers more contests in the future — so stay tuned, Osceola! 

For more information and a full list of events coming to Kissimmee’s Osceola Heritage Park, visit ohpark.com