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Celebrate John Wayne's Birthday in His Iowa Hometown

You probably associate John Wayne with the American West. But the film legend was actually born in Iowa. His hometown, Winterset, is the site of the John Wayne Birthplace Museum, which organizes an annual celebration around the Duke's birthday at the end of May (born in Winterset on May 26, 1907, he died in 1979).

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the event. On May 26-27, the town will host screenings of Wayne's movies at the recently restored Iowa Theater, an all-horse parade featuring a Wells Fargo stagecoach, a barn dance, and other good old-fashioned activities you don't have to be a diehard fan of movie westerns to enjoy.

The guest of honor is Johnny Crawford, a cast member of the late '50s/early '60s TV show The Rifleman, who also appeared with Wayne in Howard Hawks's El Dorado.

In the movie, Wayne shot him dead.