Monday, May 20, 2024

Info About The Upcoming 25th Anniversary Celebration of Cooter's Place and My Weekend With Catherine Bach


Another big Dukes of Hazzard event is coming up and this one will be so special.  Ben and Alma have been entertaining us Dukes fans at Cooter's for twenty-five years and it's time to celebrate.  The event will take place over the weekend of July 19-21 and we have great things planned.  Catherine Bach, Tom Wopat, Rick Hurst and Jeff Atlman will headline the event and there will be a few surprise and not yet announced guests to add to the list.  Originally, the plan was to have the event at Cooter's in Luray, but it has now been moved to the Page Valley Fairgrounds, which is about five miles west of Cooter's in Luray.  The stars and cars will be there and I am fortunate enough to have a few activities planned that I hope will be crowd pleasers.  More on those in the future.  The details of the event are still getting ironed out and more announcements will be made soon.  I happened to be in Luray over the weekend where I was in discussion about some of those plans and also got to hang out with two of my favorite women, my wife and Daisy Duke herself, Catherine Bach.  Let's take a look at a few pictures from the weekend.  


Natalie doesn't always accompany me on Dukes trips but she did this time.  She had a blast and has become good friends with Catherine over the years.  The Dukes of Hazzard is all about family!


It was a very good crowd and Richie runs a great autograph line.  I love being able to help fans' dreams come true when they meet their heroes.  And Daisy Duke is a perfect hero.  We all know this.  





The line went through the entire store and was solid all day.  Every fan got their autograph and photo.  There were a lot of happy Dukes fans this weekend.  


Catherine spends time with every fan and makes sure they are having a great time.  We Dukes fans are so blessed.  


Catherine took pictures with fans in front of the General.  


A few items were sent in to Cooter's to get signed.  I opened one package that contained a baseball and a letter.  I read the letter and it happened to be from our pal Paul Letlow.  I featured a portion of Paul's Dukes collection on the blog years ago.  Check it out here.  


I had to snap some pics of Catherine autographing the baseball and text them to Paul right away.  He sure was happy to get that text.
  

Cooter's recently updated the dining area, Cooter's Country Kitchen and there's new staff running the kitchen.  They also did some remodeling.  I had several menu items and they were great.  



I love the tables, and all the decor is great.  You won't go wrong having a bite to eat at the new Cooter's Country Kitchen. 


There's always new items at Cooter's.  This time I bought several new shirts, one featuring the new 25th Anniversary logo seen above, and four new keychains.  These keychains are made with great quality and I couldn't pass them up.  


I had to snap a picture of one of my most favorite items Cooter's has ever created.  Look at all this glorious 01 wrapping paper! I don't quite have that much at DukesCollector headquarters, but I have a bunch.  I really love this stuff!


This was fun to see hanging up on the wall beside the register.  


It's the plaque Richie and I presented to Ben and Alma during the 40th Anniversary of the Dukes of Hazzard celebration in Nashville in 2019.  Great to see displayed in a prominent place. 
 

It was a perfect weekend spent with two lovely ladies.  Natalie had fun and I had a blast.  Catherine enjoyed herself too. We talked plans for the July event and I can't wait to announce my additions to the event.  It's going to be so much fun.  Look for more updates on Cooter's site and socials and keep an eye on the ol' DukesCollector blog for my announcements.  This is going to be fun!

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Cooter's Has Been Absolutely Killing It With New Products - Wrapping Paper, Pins, Football and More

For twenty-five years, Cooter's Place has been THE place for everything Dukes of Hazzard related.  We are going to celebrate that milestone this summer.  But before we get to that, I would like to take a moment to recognize the amazing effort the crew at Cooter's has been putting in lately with the newest Cooter's Place exclusive products.  DukesCollector Cooter wanted to help show off these great new items.  Let's take a look.

Maybe you might think this is no big deal, but Cooter's now has it's own plastic bag.  I think this is a huge deal.  Instead of taking your beloved new Cooter's items home in a generic "thank you" bag like before, now your purchase comes in this stunning orange plastic bag that, in my opinion, exceeds anything you would get from Walmart, Target, or anywhere else.  Duke Collector Cooter agrees!

This piece of plastic goodness is basically a collector's item on its own.  Just look at the gorgeous imagery! I love this plastic bag!  When has anyone ever said that before?

Another cool new feature from Cooter's is not just a plain brown box, but what's on the box.  Cooter loves showing this off.  If you look closely at what's keeping this box closed, you'll see...Cooter's Place packing tape!

This stuff is unbelievable!  Anytime you order a package from CootersPlace.com, your box will now come sealed with this tire tread themed tape that has the logo and the General Lee on it.  That is too cool!  

The bag and the tape are details that Michael and the crew at Cooter's have added to their repertoire that really show the passion they have for Hazzard Nation.  These are small additions, but they mean so much.  Think about it, Cooter's could just be selling the same t-shirt and photos they always sold, which we would be happy about, but for twenty-five years now, they've never been content and have always given us fans new and exciting items.  The fact that Ben, Alma, Michael and the crew have gone so far as to invest in these giveaway items just to make our purchases more special shows how much they love us.  We as Dukes fans are truly blessed to have Cooter's and the lovely folks that work there.  Cooter's never sits still and is always innovating.  That is definitely evident with this next item!   

I can't tell you how many times I dreamed about Duked of Hazzard wrapping paper.  When I see modern wrapping paper with the Avengers, Spider-Man, Batman, Superman, Transformers, and Jurassic Park on it in stores, I always wish that we lived in a world where we could get Dukes wrapping paper.  Lately I've seen commemorative gift wrap for licenses like Masters of the Universe and WWE. I've even received some wrestler specific gift wrap showcasing Ultimate Warrior and Macho Man Randy Savage when I bought some items from sites that make authorized WWE memorabilia.  I am happy to report we live in that world I dreamed of, because Cooter's now sells 01 General Lee wrapping paper and it is amazing!  


Dukes Collector Cooter loves showing off these rolls of this beautiful orange paper.  The paper has large bold 01s as well as an image of our favorite orange car.  Making the paper orange and only having to utilize black and white inks was an ingenious design.  This is truly special paper.  


Cooter's made the paper available in time for Christmas and I couldn't wait to get some.  Let's say I ordered a lot.  My wife wrapped all the presents she bought me in this perfect orange paper and our tree become a wintery Hazzardy wonderland.  That's the first time I've ever used the term "Hazzardy" and I guarantee it will not be the last.  Full disclosure, I had a hard time ripping the paper off the presents and while opening the first few gifts I acted like my grandmother Dolly, who would always open gifts delicately and not rip it.  Jeff also does this, but I think his intentions are to recycle the paper.  With the large number of gifts I was fortunate to get from Natalie, Christmas morning would have become Christmas afternoon if I opened them Dolly-style.  I stopped thinking about it and ripped in.  I was like a kid on Christmas morning.  That's exactly how I've been on every Christmas morning my entire life.  It was awesome!

But I didn't use up my whole supply.  Cooter's plans on selling the paper for a long time to come, but that doesn't mean I didn't get enough to probably last a lifetime.  I have several unopened rolls, both for future use and to never open. I also asked my mom to wrap this small empty box so I could display the beautiful paper.  Look how great it is!  I love Cooter's 01 General Lee wrapping paper!

Next up Cooter wants to show off a couple of new key chains I recently got.  These aren't new items at the three Cooter's locations, Luray, Nashville, and Pigeon Forge, but are the steadfast items that have been bestsellers for years.  I've picked up so many of these over the years and I found so many uses for them.  I needed a few more.  

This General Lee keychain is such a perfect keychain.  I have one hanging from my backpack, on several sets of keys, and a bunch throughout the collection.  The orange 01 is just so great.  I picked up a couple and have plans for at least one of them in the future.  

The 01 has the same image on both sides.  The General has info about each Cooter's location including the web address and phone numbers.  It's a must have Dukes item. 

Another newer item at Cooter's are these really cool Hat Pins.  You know I love a good Dukes pin.  It was hard, but Cooter picked a favorite.  

The Exclusive Collection includes four different pins.  They each come on this nice card back that follows the tire tread theme.  The pins include the Gen'ral from behind with and without the Cooter's Garage logo, the Jumpin' General Lee and a front/side view.  I can't pick a favorite, because they are all perfect.  

The back of the package uses that great image of Cooter that was also used on the extraordinary 1/18 Cooter's Tow Truck exclusive from Greenlight.   It's the little details like this that add so much to Cooter's products.  

Next up is an item I saw at the 2023 Hazzard Run and I had to have it.  It's a General Lee pillow case!  I know, there is an official Dukes of Hazzard pillow case that came with the official bed set in 1981, and I have several in my collection, but I'm not putting any of those in the actual laundry rotation.  This bad boy is on my bed right now!


Cooter's has two different designs for the pillow case and they are both perfect.  There's the Cooter's Garage variety. 


And the jumping General Lee version.  I have both in the rotation and I swear I sleep better with my head on a General Lee pillow.  Both pillow cases are soft and comfy and everything you want in a pillow case.  Hat's off to you Cooter's.  Another winner. 

Next up are these great Cooter's socks.  Look at how glorious they are.  I plan on actually wearing these, but haven't made myself open them yet.  I have an older pair from Cooter's that I wear pretty often.  This design is even better than the last.  They keep one-upping themselves. 

I've wanted an 01 flag forever.  I had some plans to make one myself, but never got around to it.  Thanks to Cooter's, I don't have to.  This coat of arms is big and bold.  I love it. 

Like so many items, I got one to keep in the package, but I plan on using one of these flags.  I plan on flying it when the DukesCollector collection is officially open.  The flag will tell passersby that they can come check out my Dukes stuff.  Soon!  

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The final item in this blog is one I never knew I needed, but now can't imagine life without it.  This is the Cooter's Garage football.  And it is spectacular!  It has two designs on it.  The Cooter's Garage logo. 


And a big bold 01.  I never played football officially, but I have played in over a dozen turkeybowls.  An official size and weight football is just a little too big for the average, non Ben Roethlisberger sized hands.  I've always noticed that a junior high sized football is the perfect size to throw around with your neighbors in the backyard or with your cousin on the beach.  Michael and the crew at Cooter's must be on the same wavelength cause that's exactly the size of this orange beauty.  It has the perfect feel.  The composite leather feels just the way a football should.  This ball is perfect.  You know I had to get two.  One for the collection and one to keep in my car.  


Sorry old UA football, this one is getting the prime spot in the little cubby in my hatch.  I'll have this football with me everywhere I go and will always be ready to throw it around if the opportunity presents itself.  Anytime you want to pass, let me know!


Who would have thought that I would be starting a Hazzard County Athletics Association with my 01 balls?  This volleyball has seen so many good games during my open volleyball nights here at my church's new hall in Brownsville over the last few months.  I had to take a picture of them together.  The HCAA is open to all athletes and nonathletes alike in the greater Hazzard County area, which includes all of Hazzard Nation.  Let's play!


This football is remarkable.  And it has become available at the perfect time, just in time for the TaylorBowl, I mean the Superbowl.  


Though my Steelers aren't in it this year, I'll be watching the Superbowl in my 01 Steelers jersey with my 01 football in hand.  It's our year next year Steelers!


Before I wrap this blog up, in figurative 01 wrapping paper, I decided to throw the new orange pigskin around with DukesCollector Cooter.  I asked him if it was to big for him, but he said he could handle it.  


Whoops.  He was wrong.  Sorry buddy.  


He dusted himself off and decided he would just be the holder for me to practice my field goals.  You're a good man, DukesCollector Cooter. 


All of these great items are available now at Cooter's.  You can get them at the three locations, Luray, Nashville and Pigeon Forge, or from the website cootersplace.com.  Michael and the crew also have some unbelievable items planned, and I have been lucky enough to get a sneak peak.  I can't wait to get my hands on them.  We Dukes fans are so blessed to have Ben, Alma and the family at Cooter's.  They really keep this hobby thriving.  

This July we'll be celebrating 25 wonderful years of Cooter's Place with a big ol' celebration at the Luray location.  It's shaping up to be a great event and I look forward to sharing a lot of details soon.  You will not want to miss this one.  It's going to be epic.