National Cowboy Poetry Gathering

January 29 - February 3, 2018

Warm up the winter at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering with an abundance of stories—first-hand accounts, narratives passed down and around, and undoubtedly a yarn or two.

ELKO, NV 89801

(775) 738-7508

“Cowboy… poetry?”

Don’t worry. Bewilderment is common from folks who haven’t yet experienced this weeklong, town-wide, full-participation celebration of authentic western cultural arts. However, attend and you’ll quickly discover why thousands flock to “the Gathering” each winter.

To clarify, the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering isn’t just about poetry. And, like the real American West, it certainly isn’t just for cowboys.

Many years after several folklorists wrangled a handful of poets together to share an overlooked American tradition, the NCPG has blossomed into an incredible “six days of poetry, music, dancing, workshops, exhibits, conversations, food and fellowship” drawing revelers from all walks of life – western and beyond.

The result? Consider this: how many places can you encounter a ranch matriarch, Native American poet laureate, pre-teen yodeling champ, and bronc-riding free-verse slam poet, all in a single show… or even a single shuttle van?

At the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, you can discover horseman cultures from around the world, learn a traditional skill, dance the two-step, plan for the West's future with ranchers and conservationists, watch home-made films of rural life, meet new friends at the historic Pioneer Saloon, enjoy Basque food, listen to tall tales, dispel myths, build bridges and be inspired.

Get ready to “experience today’s renaissance of storytelling through poetry, song, video, visual art, new media and more.” Watch tradition respected and futures embraced with a lineup of favorite familiar faces, plus a talented bunch of new ones who are sure to make their debuts to packed houses (because it’s just that kind of crowd).

If you’re ready for a western cultural bash that takes place as much on stage as off, in a town that truly rises to the occasion, get yourself to Elko. Share a story and/or Buckaroo Brew with soon-to-be-former strangers.

Become a part of the tradition.

More info:
• Tickets, Passes, Schedule, Discounts
• A First-timer’s Guide to the Gathering
• How to Cowboy Poetry Like a Pro
• 19 Reasons to STEER CLEAR of Elko

Are you planning your first Gathering? Tickets to the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering are now on sale. Visit: 

To become a Western Folklife Center member or renew your membership:  call 888-880-5885 ext. 222.


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