Planning Your Trip to Elko

Join us for the 33rd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, January 30-February 4, 2017!

To assist with your plans for attending a National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, here are some answers to your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Elko, the Gathering, the Western Folklife Center, and more.

Gathering FAQs               Travel and Lodging 
Transportation                       Becoming a Vendor
Open Mic Opportunities       Other Activities

Elko, Nevada is located in the northeastern corner of the state along Interstate 80 (230 miles from Salt Lake City; 295 miles from Reno; and 255 miles from Boise). Elko is serviced by Sky West Airlines, a Delta connection from Salt Lake City, as well as Amtrak and Greyhound Bus. Elko is in the high desert of the Great Basin at 5060 feet elevation, and winter weather in January is varied. Check the weather before you travel and road conditions if you are driving (see below). Come prepared for cold winter weather.

Travel information and arrangements
For Elko information (private vehicle, air, train, bus and charter/private air travel) including links to weather and road conditions, click here.

For hotel accommodations we recommend making your reservations well in advance, although rooms usually can be found during the event as well. Hotels that graciously support us during the Gathering are: American InnBest Western Elko Inn, Budget Inn, Centre Motel, Comfort Inn of Elko, Days Inn, Elko Motel, Esquire Inn, Gold Country Inn & Casino, High Desert Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, Holiday Inn Express & Suites, Manor Motor Lodge, Mid Town Motel, Motel 6, Oak Tree Inn, Quality Inn & Suites, Red Lion Hotel & Casino, Rodeway Inn, Shilo Inns, Stockmen's Hotel & Casino, Super 8 Elko, Thunderbird Motel, TownePlace Suites by Marriott Elko NV Travelodge, and Travelers Motel. Feel free to let the hotels know that the Western Folklife Center sent you!

For further information about available lodging, call the Elko Convention and Visitors Authority at 800-248-3556 or 775-738-4091, or you can visit their website at You can also contact the Elko Chamber of Commerce by calling 775-738-7135 or get lodging information by selecting "hotels/motels" in the search directory at

Elko is serviced by SkyWest Airlines (a Delta Connection) from Salt Lake City, Amtrak, and Greyhound Bus Lines. Rental car service in Elko is provided by Enterprise (775-738-2899 or 800-593-0505), Hertz (775-738-3147), and Avis at (775-738-4426). Private plane or charter? Contact El Aero Services for information and assistance. For the Elko Taxi Service, call 738-1400. Carpooling is encouraged. Looking for a rideshare? Check us out on Facebook, or Twitter and converse with other Gathering fans heading to Elko.

The Western Folklife Center provides shuttle transportation on a fixed route between performance venues Thursday through Saturday. These shuttles are not available to take Gathering attendees to hotels, restaurants, or other locations. As a courtesy to their guests, hotels/motels may also run a shuttle: you will need to confirm that with your designated hotel/motel.

Assisted-listening devices are available in the Elko Convention Center Auditorium, the G Three Bar Theater at the Western Folklife Center, and Great Basin College Theatre. For assistance, please check with the staff at the Guest Services Desk at the Elko Convention Center and the sound technicians at the G Three Bar Theater and the Great Basin College Theatre.

All venues are wheelchair accessible.

What else is going on?
Every January, we'll compile a list of other activities and events going on in Elko for you.  For now, click here to see a brief listing of current local attractions.

Shows at Local Casinos
For information on performances at the Red Lion Inn and Casino during the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, call 800-545-0044 or 775-738-2111. For information on performances at the Stockmen’s Hotel and Casino, call 800-648-2345 or 775-738-5141. Nightly shows are also to be found at Gold Country Inn and Casino and other venues. After hours jam sessions abound between our own Pioneer Bar / Fireplace Nook and other venues in downtown Elko. 

You can contact the Western Folklife Center in these ways:

888-880-5885 (toll-free)
Fax: 775-738-2900

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mailing address
National Cowboy Poetry Gathering
Western Folklife Center
501 Railroad St.
Elko, NV 89801

The Western Folklife Center Gift Shop and Wiegand Gallery
Hours: 10:00 am - 5:30 pm Wednesday through Friday
Saturday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Closed Sunday-Tuesday and most Holidays
Ph: 775-738-7508, ext. 234 or 888-880-5885

NOTE: We will offer special Hours of Operation during the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Also, we furnish a Gift Shop in the Ruby Room at the Elko Convention Center for your shopping pleasure and convenience. Autograph signings featuring new works of selected cowboy poets and musicians will be featured at both locations: these will be included in the daily schedule.