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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
A birthday extravaganza is happening this weekend to celebrate Merle Haggard's 77th. Although Haggard won't be in town, his fans will put together a three-part birthday event.
Friday on "First Look with Scott Cox," Dianne Sharmon and Glenda Rankin, the team behind the effort to move Haggard's boyhood home to the Kern County Museum, detailed Sunday's festivities.
At 1 p.m., a plaque will be unveiled to dedicate Merle Haggard Drive at the Bakersfield Harley-Davidson.
"The plaque is on a boulder that came from Merle's old home," Rankin said.
The ceremony is free to attend but Rankin and her sister Sharmon hope to raise money through raffle tickets. There will be hats, a guitar autographed by Haggard and a two-night stay at the Rankin family's guest ranch.
After the ceremony, be cake and ice cream will be served at the Kern County Museum, along with live music.
To wrap up the birthday party, at 8 p.m. the public is welcome to go to The Fox Theater to see Haggard at the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards. Country performers will honor Haggard with the Crystal Milestone Award.
"It's been a lot of hard work, but it's a labor of love," Sharmon said of efforts to move Haggard's old home.