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National Cowboy Poetry Gathering

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Tickets are now on sale for the 35th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, January 28-February 2, 2019.


Read Breaking News
Click here to learn more about acclaimed photographer Kurt Markus and the 35th Gathering Poster.
View the Brochure (PDF).

Since 1985, ranchfolk, rural denizens and aficionados of the American West have traveled to meet in remote Elko, Nevada. Here in Elko, they are captivated by poets and musicians whose verses speak of a life lived on the land. They listen, they learn, they kick up their heels and enjoy a week filled with entertainment, delight and laughter at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Or, simply, “the Gathering.” In honor of the Gathering’s 35th anniversary, in 2019 we'll be revisiting our past and charting our course for the future. Come reminisce with us as we remember our roots and refine our routes forward!

Known for its big-heartedness, the Gathering welcomes all! Come early in the week for hands-on workshops and intimate evening performances. Stay through the later part of the week, when things really ramp up with full days and nights of offerings. Learn about creative solutions to current challenges in the rural West; listen to poems and songs from the finest Western wordsmiths; take in talks, exhibitions, films, vendors and family shows exploring just about everything of interest to the ranching West... or simply dance the night away. Friends, old and new, await at the historic Pioneer Saloon, located in the Western Folklife Center, the heart of it all.

2019 Gathering Highlights

35th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering Playlist

Gary McMahan performs his classic “Cowboyin’ Day” at the 1989 Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, in this Vintage Video from the Western Folklife Center archives. Gary will appear in the Western Jukebox show on January 30 and Laugh Kills Lonesome on February 2: tickets are still available!

Banner photo by Charlie Ekburg