The National Cowboy Poetry GatheringShare this page with others
 Join us for the
32nd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,
January 25-30, 2016!

Click here to Purchase Tickets; if a show is not on the list, it is sold out

If a show is
it will not appear.

2016 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering Poster 

The artwork for our 2016 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering Poster
is from a work called Comes Back,
by Oglala Lakota artist Donald F. Montileaux.

The National Cowboy Poetry Gathering is an annual celebration of the ranching and rural West. Through poetry, music and stories, ranch people express the beauty and challenges of a life deeply connected to the earth and its bounty. Every year, thousands travel to rural Elko, Nevada, in the heart of winter, to learn and share. It's been called the most honest and open-hearted festival in America, but it is also a darned good time! At the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, you can discover cowboy 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 over a Buckaroo Brew, enjoy Basque food, listen to tall tales, dispel myths, build bridges and be inspired. Join us for an experience you will not soon forget! Use any of the links in our banner to read more about every aspect of the Gathering. Get up to date news and more on Facebook and Twitter.

For 2016, the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering finds inspiration in the flowing grasslands, vast open spaces and indigo skies of the Northern Plains. From the Rocky Mountains to the Dakotas, from the sandhills of Nebraska to the grasslands of Saskatchewan, this expansive land of prairie and woodlands is one of the top cattle producing regions in the world. It is famous for short summers and punishing winters, but also for hardy people, excellent cattle, and fine bucking horses and bronc riders. Join us in Elko, as ranchers, poets, musicians and artists from the Northern Plains share and celebrate this land of enveloping horizons and expansive hearts. View the brochure.


One of those spontaneous, magical Gathering moments: Michael Martin Murphey and Pipp Gillette get together in 2014 on Murphey's song "Shake it Off," a catchy tune, now with Bones! Be sure to catch Michael's "Songbook" session on Saturday, January 30, 2016 - and learn to play the rhythm bones from American Songster, Dom Flemons, in a workshop on January 28!

Are you planning your first Gathering? Tickets to the 32nd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering go on sale to Western Folklife Center members the day after Labor Day and to non-members one month later. To become a Western Folklife Center member or renew your membership, click here, or call us at 888-880-5885 ext. 222. Read more about what to expect at a Gathering, tickets, and planning your trip.