Cowboy Poetry and Western Life

More about . . .


Events and Festivals


Following are previous years' descriptions that are
 linked from event listings on the Events page. 

We keep up previous years' descriptions here and here and here to help give an idea 
of what goes on at the various gatherings. 

Descriptions of current events are here.


There are also reports from pards who have attended events, 
and those are linked from the Events page, too.

Back to Events page . . .
Back on home . . .



2004 Information
The 15th Annual Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering 
Arvada, Colorado

Press release: Dec. 15, 2003

The Arvada Center Presents a World Class Round-Up at the 15th Annual Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering

ARVADA, CO - The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities presents the 15th Annual Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering Jan. 8-11, 2004. This four-day event is bigger than ever and features a line-up of over 45 acts of some of the best western talent on the planet from ranchers, cowboys and cowgirls to western singers and yodelers. Coming from 14 states, Canada and Australia, these entertainers capture the spirit and lifestyle of their western heritage through poetry, song and verse.

During the Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering, cowboy poets, western balladeers and yodelers help guests experience the real-life joys and hardships of modern ranch life, from driving cattle during the 1880s to waiting behind the chutes at the rodeo. Participants can take a break from the fast-paced, high-tech world to be entertained by the performers' rhymes and rhythms, which range from side-splitting to tear-jerking.

This long weekend features five on-stage concerts of poetry and music with the addition of a Saturday matinee due to popular demand, (Thursday, Jan. 8, at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, Jan. 9, at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Jan. 10, at 1:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, Jan. 11, at 1:00 p.m.)
as well as two days filled with theme-poetry and western music sessions (Friday and Saturday, Jan. 9 -10 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.). Details on the performers featured in the daytime sessions and concerts are below. Each on-stage concert will feature five different acts in 15-20 minute sets, guaranteeing a wide variety of entertainment. 

Bringing experience that extends beyond the United States, artists from Australia will be joining the gathering. John Best of Whiteside, Queensland, Australia is the winner of the 2003 QANTAS Waltzing Matilda Bush Poetry Award, and has won several regional Overall Champion Awards. John has performed at several governmental events and regularly appears at nursing homes, respite centers, service clubs, and private functions. He has produced two CD's. Janine Haig of Eulo, Queensland, Australia worked as a governess in the Australian Outback and now lives "in the bush" on a 106,000-acre sheep and cattle ranch. Haig has twice won the title of Australian Bush Poetry Champion, as well as the QANTAS Waltzing Matilda Bush Poetry Championship. Each Australian poet will perform in the daytime sessions on Friday and Saturday.

Two renowned Colorado Cowboy Poetry veterans, Liz Masterson and Sean Blackburn, have been performing western and swing music as a duo since 1988. The pair has performed at major cowboy poetry and western music events across the continent, including the Calgary Cowboy Festival withDale Evans, the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., and the Lincoln Center in New York City. Liz Masterson has also served as the coordinator of the Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering since 1992. The duo will perform at this year's gathering during both daytime sessions, in the evening on Friday, Jan. 9, and at the closing performance on Sunday, Jan. 11.

Back by popular demand is New West, a dynamic trio from Santa Clarita, Calif.. They were named Best Group of the Year, from the Academy of Western Artists and are led by award-winning songwriter Michael Fleming. He was raised in Englewood, CO and worked as a "barnstormer" at the
Country Dinner Playhouse. Steeped in tradition, yet blazing new musical trails, New West pays tribute to the men and women of the American West with their fresh approach to powerful lyrics and dazzling instrumentals.

Also returning are crowd-pleasers like Bill Barwick, Jon Chandler, Elizabeth Ebert, Brenn Hill, Jean Prescott and Angel Vigil. Newcomers to this year's gathering include Canadian musicians David Wilkie and Cowboy Celtic. Their combination of cowboy, Celtic and original music has been called a "beautiful evocation of just how much Celtic music inspired the melodies played around the campfires in the wild, wild West."

A new generation of cowboy poets is represented this year by 23-year-old Andy Hedges from Brownfield, Texas. One of the youngest performers involved in the Cowboy Culture movement, Hedges began reciting at age 15 and is known for his flawless recitations of both classic and contemporary cowboy poetry.

A complete list of performers, performance times and dates is below.

Tickets for daytime sessions of the 15th Annual Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering may be purchased at the door and are $12 per day for an all-day pass for Friday, Jan. 9, and Saturday, Jan. 10.  Daytime sessions run from 10:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. Tickets for evening performances, Thursday through Saturday, Jan. 8-10 at 7:30 p.m., and the matinee performance on Sunday, Jan. 11, at 1:00 p.m., are $24.

The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities is the metro area's eighth largest cultural attraction, devoted to all aspects of the arts. Located two and a half miles north of Interstate 70 on Wadsworth, the Arvada Center is just a short 20 minute drive from downtown Denver. For
more information, call the Arvada Center box office at 720-898-7200 or visit the Center's web site at For media requests, contact Valerie Hamlin, publicist, at 720-898-7272 or

Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering
Jan. 8-11, 2003 at the Arvada Center
Schedule of Events

Daytime Poetry and Music Sessions
Tickets: $12 per day
Friday-Saturday, Jan. 9-10, 2004
10:00 a.m. - 5:15 p.m.
Daytime sessions mix poetry, music and yodeling with themes like Women
on the Ranch, Western Humor, Rodeo Days, Multi-Cultural Roots, The Land
and many more.

OPEN STAGE SESSIONS:  Guests can also register to recite, sing or tell
a story during one of the open stage sessions. Registration for these
open sessions begins at 9:00 a.m. each day
(for the same day only).

Daytime Performers:
· Bill Barwick (Denver, Colo.)
· John Best (Whiteside, Queensland, Australia)
· Deb Carpenter (Rushville, Neb.)
· Zeb Dennis (Longmont, Colo.)
· Jack DeWerff (Ellinwood, Kan.)
· Buckshot Dot (Payson, Ariz.)
· Larry Glenn (Rifle, Colo.)
· Peggy Godfrey (Moffat, Colo.)
· Janine Haig (Eulo, Queensland, Australia)
· Jill Jones (Driftwood, Texas)
· Gary Knighting (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
· Bill May (Kearney, Neb.)
· Andy Nelson (Pinedale, Wyo.)
· Ed Nesselhuf (Burbank, S.D.)
· Tim Nolting (Berthoud, Colo.)
· O'Brien Family Band (Evergreen, Colo.)
· Vess Quinlan (San Accacio, Colo.)
· Otto Rosfeld (Valentine, Neb.)
· John Schaffner (Wray, Colo.)
· Maggie Mae Sharp (Black Forest, Colo.)
· Nancy Thorwardson (Lyons, Colo.)
· Angel Vigil (Denver, Colo.)
· Barry Ward (Meade, Kan.)

A soup and sandwich grub line is available each
day for the guests' eatin' pleasure.

On Stage Concerts/Performances
Tickets: $24
Each individual performance lasts 15-20 minutes.

Thursday, Jan. 8, 2004, 7:30 p.m.
Host: John Schaffner (Wray, Colo.) - Auctioneer with cowboy poetry & original rhymes
Buffalo Bill Boycott (Lander, Wyo.) - Native American sign language, poetry, yodeling, banjo & fiddle
Leslie Keltner (Cody, Wyo.) - Poems from her ranch-life experiences & imagination
Cowboy Celtic (Turner Valley, Alberta, Canada) - Five-piece band with Celtic influence in cowboy songs
Sid Hausman (Tesuque, N.M.) - Songs & stories of Native Americans & rural Southwest
Brenn Hill (Hooper, Utah) - Cowboy poet & singer-songwriter 

Friday, January 9, 7:30 p.m.
Host: Maggie Mae Sharp (Black Forest, Colo.) - Uses humor and drama to portray women of the West
Andy Hedges (Brownfield, Texas) - 23-year-old with classic & original poems & songs
Gwen Petersen (Big Timber, Mont.) - Witty ranch woman poetry
Liz Masterson and Sean Blackburn (Denver, Colo.) - Superb harmony spiced with history, comedy & yodeling
Chuck Larsen (Saratoga, Wyo.) - Hilarious cowboy poet
Jon Chandler (Westminster, Colo.) - Songs & stories with historical basis

Saturday, January 10, 1:00 p.m.
Host: Peggy Godfrey (Moffat, Colo.) - Feisty lady rancher & cowboy poet
Howard Parker (Gordon, Neb.) - Rodeo & ranch life through songs & poems
Randy Rieman (Lamy, N.M.) - Classic poems from American West & Australian Bush
New West (Santa Clarita, Calif.) - Trio with award-winning songs and hilarious banter
Echo Klaproth (Shoshoni, Wyo.) - Rancher who preserves tradition with her poems
Gary McMahan (Bellvue, Colo.) - Reflections of ranch and rodeo through poetry/songs

Saturday, January 10, 7:30 p.m.
Host: Buckshot Dot (Payson, Ariz.) - Award-winning poetry & songs from Ark. & Ariz.
Buckshot Dot (Ovalo, Texas) - Voice & songs are "spiritual essence of the West"
Dick Warwick (Oakesdale, Wash.) - Brilliant & quirky wordsmith
Cowboy Celtic (Turner Valley, Alberta, Canada) - (see description above)
Yvonne Hollenbeck (Clearfield, S.D.) - Cattle rancher's wife expresses life with hilarious poems & lovely quilts
New West  (Santa Clarita, Calif.) - (see description above)

Sunday, January 11, 1:00 p.m.
Host: Bill Barwick (Denver, Colo.) - Big voice from radio & television & a guitarist & singer
Duane Dickinson (Scobey, Mont.) - Specializes in Victorian Ballads & cowboy songs
Elizabeth Ebert (Lemmon, S.D.) - Poetry that hits the funny bone & tugs at heart strings
Jon Chandler (Westminster, Colo.) - Still rides the Outlaw Trail
Pat Richardson (Merced, Calif.) - Former bull rider entertains with humor

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2004 Information
Fourth Annual Montana Cowboy Poetry Wintercamp 
Big Timber, Montana
Contact: Gwen Petersen by email 
more . . .

The Fourth Annual Montana Cowboy Poetry Wintercamp will take place January 16-18, 2004.  Greenbroke Show (kids) on Friday night, all day open mike on Sat. followed by Nightrider Show , this year featuring Wylie & the Wild West.  All takes place at the American Legion Hall, Big Timber, Montana.  Contact: Gwen Petersen,

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2004 Information
The National Cowboy Poetry Gathering Elko, Nevada


ELKO, NV (Aug 27, 2003) For two decades cowboys, ranchers and lovers of the western lifestyle have been convening in Elko, Nevada to recite and listen to Cowboy Poetry. The National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko will celebrate its 20th anniversary, January 24 – 31, 2004. In the spirit of celebration the Western Folklife Center will bring back poets and musicians who were featured in the very first Elko Cowboy Poetry Gathering in 1985. To honor the history of the poetry of horseback culture the WFC will host a special exhibition of poetry, gear, and artifacts in The Lingo of Our Calling. There will also be a special Wednesday night symphony, one of many collaborations to come out of twenty years of Gatherings. In addition, this year’s Gathering will showcase the nomadic herdsmen of Mongolia with special evening concerts, cooking demonstrations and an exhibition of Mongolian artifacts, curated by the WFC and hosted by the Northeastern Nevada Museum. Tickets go on sale September 2nd to members of the Western Folklife Center and on October 2nd to the general public.

Highlights of the 20th NCPG include:

Western Folklife Center Founding Director Hal Cannon states that although the organizers of the first Cowboy Poetry Gathering didn’t know it at the time, "1985 was ripe for ranching culture to claim its own story, to find the touchstones of its culture. Always before cowboys had allowed their story to be told publicly by others – songwriters, scriptwriters, novelists – but increasingly that story, told in popular culture, became a monolithic Arthurian myth, far from the breadth of the real life." It was the first Gathering that let the working cowboy share his poetic voice and musical song, and it was those first brave cowboys who stood on the Elko Convention Center stage that helped start the grassroots movement of cowboy poetry events across the nation. This year the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering is bringing back some of those cowboys to let them share their stories again. Purchasers of the three-day guest pass will have the opportunity to hear these poets in daytime sessions January 29 - 31, 2004.

The Cowboy Symphony is scheduled Wednesday, January 28 at the Elko Convention Center and features The American Buckaroo Orchestra conducted by Kory Katseanes, along with the rich, burnished vocal blend of the Sons of the San Joaquin, and the traditional sounds of cowboy musician Michael Martin Murphey. Also joining the symphony will be Don Edwards, cowboy balladeer, and Waddie Mitchell, cowboy poet and spinner of tales. These famed artists have played special arrangements of cowboy songs with symphonies all across the United States. For this one night only they are pulling together to present "the best Cowboy Symphony yet!"

The nomadic herdsmen of Mongolia represent what is perhaps the last real horse-based culture in the world. Renowned for their horsemanship and animal husbandry, they rely on their vast grasslands for grazing and livelihood.


They have much in common with horse and cattle cultures in other parts of the world, including the American and Australian cowboy. On Monday, January 26 at 7pm join visiting Mongolians as they perform alongside our visiting Australians Janine Haig and John Best. They perform again on Saturday, January 31 at 6:30pm and 8:30pm, this time with Americans Henry Real Bird and Paul Zarzyski. Both shows will be at the Western Folklife Center’s G Three Bar Theater.


The Western Folklife Center, 501Railroad Street in Elko, will host an exhibit honoring the history and creative inspiration of cowboy poetry. The opening reception for The Lingo of Our Calling will be Thursday, January 29 at 5pm. The Northeastern Nevada Museum and the WFC have joined to curate the exhibit Mongolian Horseman to be held at NNM, 1515 Idaho Street. The exhibit will feature artifacts of the nomadic Mongolian herdsmen, including horse gear, a typical home (ger), photographs, musical instruments and other cultural artifacts.


This year’s event will include performances by Baxter Black, cowboy poet extraordinaire; Eddie McAlvain & the Maverick Western Swing Band, Western Swing Hall of Fame inductees; Red Steagall, poet and singer of the western prairie; Waddie Mitchell, spinner of tales; Skip Gorman & his Waddie Pals, performers of old-time cowboy songs; Oscar Auker, 11-year-old aspiring cowboy and poet; The Hot Club of Cowtown, "Bob Wills meets Django Reinhardt brand of swing music," and many, many more!


Workshops held throughout the week offer something for everyone. Ranch women will demonstrate how to cook a meal to please any hungry worker. Local Basque residents will share their skills in cooking the perfect appetizers and desserts. Folklorists and storytellers will teach how to turn memories into exciting forms that others will want to read. Instruction on how to forge your own trivet, fireplace set, or window grill will be given in a blacksmithing workshop. In the rawhide braiding workshop, participants will learn the art of braiding rawhide hobbles.

Tickets to this year’s Gathering can be obtained by calling the Western Folklife Center ticket office at 775-738-7508 or 888-880-5885. Most daytime events are open seating and require a Day Pass or three-day Guest Pass. An Advance Guest Pass costs $35 ($45 after December 23, 2003) and includes a special commemorative program book and pin. Single Day Passes cost $15 (program book must be purchased separately).

For more information, call the Western Folklife ticket office at 775-738-7508 or 888-880-5885, or visit our website at for an in-depth look at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering and this years participants.

Western Folklife Center operating support comes from a combination of earned income, contributed income and public sources. Over 1,200 members located throughout the United States and several foreign countries support the WFC. Additional funding comes from local businesses, individuals, foundations and government organizations. Prominent supporters include the Ford Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Wallace Foundation, the R. Harold Burton Foundation, the Dick Burton Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the William Randolph Hearst Foundations, George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundations, the John Ben Snow Memorial Trust, Anne Pattee, George Gund III, International Game Technology, James Irvine Foundation, Bill and Sally Searle, Sue and Wes Dixon, Trust for Mutual Understanding and many others


Western Folklife Center
501 Railroad Street
Elko, NV 89801

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2004 Information
Fort Worth Stock Show
"Campfire Stories" presented by Texas Cowboy Poets Association - West Arena

The Fort Worth Stock Show is comin' up January 26 and 27, 2004, and Lariat Laureate runner up Carl Condray writes: "Back in 1896 in Ft. Worth Texas a stock show was held on the banks of Marine Creek.  Well apparently it was a success and over the next few years it grew to be part of the annual festivities of the National Livestock Exchange and Convention. In 1901 it became known by its still familiar name in Texas, The Fat Stock Show.  In 1987 it was officially named the Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show but round these parts people still use the Fat Stock Show name.  No matter what it is called it as several weeks of rodeo fun and entertainment.  Our old friend Charles Williams is headin' up the poetry gathering and is well known for organizing such events all around the state.  I don't know how many of the Bar-D  bards will be there but I know that I will be performing there and will try to keep yall updated when I get back.  The poetry will happen on the 26th and 27th of January."  Give Carl a holler if you'll be in Ft. Worth.   Posted 1/12

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2004 Information
"Days of '76: Spirits of Deadwood"  Rapid City, South Dakota
   ....a Black Hills Stock Show Foundation Fundraiser     

 RPCC Theater  ~ Saturday, January 31, 2004  ~ Rapid City, SD
 Fashions: 4:30 - 5:30 p.m..    ~     Wine & Cheese After
   * FREE ADMISSION!  Donations gratefully accepted
   * Purchase Your Chance To Win $50 Gift Certificates
      from Participating Stores!

January 30 - February 8, 2004   ~   Rapid City, SD

  Rapid City, SD


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2004 Information
Sixth Annual Lewis and Clark Cowboy Poetry Entertainment & Western Arts Festival   Lewiston, Idaho

Free to the Public

Elks Lodge

Art in the Lodge Room
February 5-8, 2004
10am to 5pm
February 9, 10am to 12pm

Cowboy Poetry & Music
Main Stage
Friday & Saturday
February 6 & 7 2004
9am to 4pm

Sunday February 8
Cowboy Church--9am

February 5, 2004

Style show 6pm

Band Scramble
7pm till???????

Don't miss this for great fun

$5.00 admission

 February 6 & 7 2004

7pm show

Cost: $15.00 per person

Show only

Tickets go on Sale

December 17, 2002


Corral West
2016 Thain Grade
Lewiston, ID 83501

The Art Show and All Day Performances are FREE
to the public February 5,6,7,& 8 2004

A "Bronze "
By John Geis
to some lucky ticket holder.

See you at the Festival

Bring the family

Thursday Feb. 5
Kids Show
main stage
12noon to 1pm

Liars contest:
Saturday, 1 to 2pm
Great prize for the winner

This year there will be a kids' day.
February 5, 2004

Mini seminars
9am to 3pm
Terri Taylor (yodeling)
John Geis (sculpturing)
Jessie Myrick ( painting)
Jeff Streeby ( writing)

And a lot more that will be announced as we receive their verification

Bringing the West to the World

The primary purpose of the Western Heritage Corporation shall be to provide
a unified voice of contemporary cowboy poets, musicians and practitioners of
traditional  practical arts and crafts, and fine artists whose subject
matter focuses on images of cowboys and the West.

To perpetuate the cowboy way of life as it applies to music, crafts, skills
and knowledge.

To build bonds of friendship between all cultures.

To provide opportunities for young people to participate in activities that
foster creativity and public performance

To support established community activities and to provide technical
assistance consistent with the stated aims of the group.

To inform the public of the history of the Western lifestyle and its values.

To offer to the public both broad and detailed interpretations of the
Western Heritage and its important antecedents and its important
contemporary cultural relevance.

For more information about the festival call:


Lewis Clark Cowboy Entertainment & Western Arts Festival
PO Box 208
Nezperce, Id. 83543

Tickets  $15.00

Purchase early  or at the door

Sanctioned by Northwest Chapter, Western Music Association.

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2004 Information
Annual Western Heritage Roundup, Montana Country Poets and Pickers  Chinook, Montana

The Chinook High School Speech and Drama Club is, once again, sponsoring The Montana Country Poets and Pickers in their annual gathering of talent at The Western Heritage Roundup 2004 on February 6th & 7th, at the Chinook High School Auditorium in Chinook, Montana.  

Doors open at 6:15 both evenings, with opening entertainment by the Hi-Line Cowboy Symphony.
Performances begin at 7:00 with a variety of good family entertainment consisting of poems, music,
stories and a heap of fun for only a five dollar bill.  

Evening performances will be followed by free jam sessions at the Chinook Motor Inn.  The performers
invite you to free daytime entertainment sessions at the Chinook Motor Inn.  These hourly sessions begin at 10 Saturday morning and wrap up at 5 p.m.  Cowboy Church will convene at 9 a.m. Sunday February 8th downstairs at the Chinook Motor Inn.  So come to the cowboy poet capital of North Central Montana and experience performers from across the Big Sky Country and Canada.  

For more information call: (406) 386-2275 or (406) 395-4458.  

A tentative list of performers include.  Pol Haldemann, David Molitor, Arnold Hokanson, Jim Faber, Val White, Laurel White, Fred Liese, Stacey Sue, Lloyd McKenna, Tom Wilson, June Elges, Jerry Liese, Tom & Lorraine Watson, Dena Fritz, Phyllis Rathwell, Ron Pegar, Hi-Line Cowboy Symphony, Shannon Kellam, Joe Kennedy, Mike Burns, Dusty Huestis, and Steven R. Hughes.

Montana Country Poets & Pickers  e-mail:

Updated 1/12

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2004 Information
A Cowboy Concert Merritt B. C.

A Cowboy Concert, Darkwaters Cafe, Merritt BC, In support of the BC Cowboys Hall of Fame, featuring Mike Puhallo, Matt Johnston, Tammy Gislason, Danny Mack, Dave Longworth and Lynn Shook. Steak dinner at 6pm, concert starts at 8.

Tickets $20 for dinner and concert, $10 for concert only.  For information call 1-888-763-2224 or 250-378- 6812.  Posted 1/27

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2004 Information
A Cowboy Concert, Pritchard, B. C. 

7pm, A Cowboy Concert, Pritchard BC, Community Hall, in support of the BC Cowboys Hall of Fame. , featuring Mike Puhallo, Matt Johnston, Tammy Gislason, Danny Mack, Dave Longworth and Lynn Shook.

Tickets $10 For information call 1-888-763-2224 Posted 1/27

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2004 Information
A Cowboy Concert, 100 Mile House, B. C. 

100 Mile House BC, A Cowboy Concert, in support of the BC Cowboys Hall Of Fame featuring Mike Puhallo, Matt Johnston, Dick Threlkeld, Dave Longworth, Danny Mack and Tammy Gislason.

7:00 PM in the Martin Exeter Hall for tickets or information call (250) 456-2425 email Posted 1/27

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2004 Information
Cowboy Poetry, Florissant, Colorado

Laurie Wagner Buyer, W.C. Jameson, Gary Knighting and Tom and Donna Hatton at the Florissant School/Museum, Florissant, Colorado...February 15 at 2pm. Contact Donna Hatton, (719) 687-2300

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2004 Information
A Cowboy Concert, Wesworld, B. C.

7pm, A Cowboy Concert, Weswold BC Community Hall. In support of the BC Cowboys Hall of Fame, featuring Mike Puhallo, Dave Longworth, Matt Johnston, Kraig Jodrey others TBA Admission $10 at the door.

Phone Mike 1-888-763-2224 for details Posted 1/27

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2004 Information
Second Annual Lander Cowboy Poetry Gathering  Lander, Wyoming

The Second Annual Lander Cowboy Poetry Gathering  will be held at the Best Western Inn at Lander, Lander, Wyoming on Saturday, Feb. 21. 2004.   Hourly open mic sessions 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Evening Program from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., featuring Kevin McNiven of Lander, the Wyoming Reds, Leslie Keltner of Cody, Don Kennington of Ogden Utah, Joe Bain of Crowheart, Wyo., the Badwater Cattle Company of Malad Idaho; Garland Kennington, Pete Davis and Ron Bailey of Riverton, Wyo. and Jean Mathisen Haugen  and Gerry Sowers of Lander, Wyo.  Music, poetry and lots of fun!  Contact Jean Mathisen Haugen at or 307/332-9425 for further information.   

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2004 Information
"Exploring Our Western Heritage" Lecture Series  Kamloops, B. C.

7 PM , "Exploring Our Western Heritage" Lecture Series, hosted by Mike Puhallo and presented by the Kamloops Museum and the BC Cowboy Heritage Society. A four part lecture series exploring our ranching heritage and it's value in promoting our region. Speakers will include historians, cowboy poets, story tellers, film makers, as well as community leaders. This is the third year for this program, it makes a great lead in to the Kamloops Cowboy Festival.

Feb 18  Cow trails and Pack horse tales
Feb 25  Rivers,  Roads and Rails
March 3  The Cattle Industry and our economy
March 10 Hollywood doesn't come here because we look like New York City!!!

For information call Mike Puhallo 1-888-763-2224 or The Kamloops Museum (Tena) (250) 828 -3576 Posted 1/27

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2004 Information
A Western Swing Week-End  Tucson, Arizona

Popular DJ Joe Baker  of the Back Forty Bunkhouse Show sends news of a new Western Swing web site,, and of an upcomin' event: A Western Swing Week-End in Tucson featuring Ted Scanlon & The Desperados, Rick Robledo & The Working Cowboy Band, and Fred Spears & The Prescott Playboys on February 27th and 28th, 2004 at the Inn Suites resort and Hotel, 520-622-3000, 475 Granada, Tucson, Arizona. Tickets $10 each show or $25.00 for weekend. Each Band will perform all three shows for your dancing pleasure. Friday night 7pm to 1am, Saturday afternoon Noon to 5pm, Saturday night  6pm to 1am. Contact John Payne (580) 743-9328, or Joe Baker (505) 257-3955 Posted 1/5 

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2004 Information
Cowboy Poetry, Moab Style!  Moab, Utah

Join us for a weekend of cowboy poetry, music and fun!

Friday, Feb. 27th – Poetry Hoorah!
            At the Moab Information Center, Main & Center St.
            7:00-9:00 P.M.
            Free to the public
            Bring your own or your favorite pieces by others
            Musicians, bring your instruments!
            Documentary video and fun for all!!

Saturday, Feb. 28th – Cowboy Poetry Workshop with Rod Miller, past Lariat Laureate 
and highly acclaimed poet and author who will present the ins and outs of writing better cowboy poetry. 
          At the MARC, 111 E. 100 North
          9:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M.
          $20 workshop registration (reserve early if possible, seating limited)

For more about this workshop and event, see the Moab Poets and Writers website at

For other info or to pre-register, call 435-259-4044 or email the Moab Poets and Writers website.

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2004 Information
Cowboy Gathering  Douglasville, Georgia

The Douglasville Cowboy Gathering, sponsored by the Cultural Arts Council, will feature Jim Dunham, Doc Stovall, Jerry Warren, Patty Clayton, Cowboy Envy, Ray Barker, and Joel Hayes.  For more info email Doc Stovall: or call him at 770/948-5570 or contact the Cultural Arts Council at 770-949-ARTS (2787)

2004 Information
Kamloops Cowboy Festival Kamloops, B.C. Canada

From Mike Puhallo:

BC Cowboy Heritage Society Press Release December 15, 2003

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and a very
Western New Year.

The Eighth Annual Kamloops Cowboy Festival March 11-14 looks like another
spectacular success already!

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society is in the saddle and working towards another
busy year in 2004. The reputation established by the Kamloops Cowboy
Festival over the last few years continues to draw an ever increasing number
of fans and entertainers from through-out Western Canada and across North
America. The festival has grown very rapidly over the last four years with
2003 total attendance figures reaching just over 4,200 over the four days of
the Festival.

The theme for Kamloops Cowboy Festival 2004 will be Stories of The Cariboo
Trail .

In 1811 David Stuart rode up the Okanogan Valley from the Columbia and
wintered at the forks of the North and South Thompson Rivers. The following
year two trading posts were built here by rival fur companies. The 2004
Kamloops Cowboy Festival will mark the beginning of the seven year countdown
to the bicentenary British Columbia's most important early trade route. The
Cariboo Trail was the lifeline of the fur trade linking Fort Kamloops with
the Columbia River Posts. It is also the most important Historic Cattle
Trail west of the Great Divide and saw a longer period of use than any other
major cattle trail in North America.

Since the arrival of the first cattle in 1822 the settlement that would
become the City of Kamloops,( first permanent settlement in Southern British
Columbia) grew to be the centre of the province's thriving Cattle industry.
It has been BC's principal transportation hub for 193 years. It is western
Canada's Original Cowtown, and the true birth place of British Columbia! It
is time we began to appreciate and celebrate the true scope of our
incredible heritage!

Early ticket sales for the 8th Annual Kamloops Cowboy Festival are off at a
full gallop leaving past successes in the dust already!

With four bus tour groups confirmed and brisk pre Christmas weekend pass
sales it looks like the 2004 festival is already a guaranteed success. We
have a great line up of Cowboy Entertainers and Artists again this year as
well as a full schedule of workshops for the budding songwriters and poets.

For details on entertainers exhibitors etc. or more complete information
please check out our website at

email us at for tickets write BCCHS Box 137 Kamloops BC
V2C 5K3 or phone 1-888-763-2224

The Kamloops Cowboy Festival is presented by the BC Cowboy Heritage Society,
with the support of Calvary Temple Church and our sponsors. Tickets
available in Kamloops at the Horsebarn.

Special Rates available at local motels.

      Live in Alberta or BC?
      Want to see the Kamloops Cowboy Festival
      without the worry of driving?

      There will be two buses coming from Alberta!
      There is also a bus from Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland,
      and another from Prince George, Quesnel, 100 Mile, and south.
      Give us a call and we'll let you know where the closest bus is to you!

      New This Year - from Prince George
      with pickups in Quesnel, Williams Lake, 100 Mile House, and south.

      Enjoy the Kamloops Cowboy Festival - Travel in style in a luxury motor
coach. Enjoy two nights at the Best Western Towne Lodge, and a weekend pass
to events at the Cowboy Festival. Tickets $290 including tax based on double
occupancy. Departing Prince George, Friday, March 12th, at 9:00 am. Will
pick up in Prince George, Quesnel, Williams Lake, 100 Mile House, and other
points along the way. Call Adventure North Tours Inc. in Quesnel at (250)
992-5169 or toll free at 1-866-992-5169 or Email:
Adventure North Tours Inc. BC Reg # 23929

      New This Year - from Vancouver Island
      with pickups in the Lower Mainland.

      1st Annual Kamloops Cowboy Festival Tour, double the fun - go with a
group! Package includes all transportation in a luxury coach, accommodation
at the Holiday Inn Express, 3 day / 2 night tour, tickets to all events and
entertainment and more. Leave on 9am ferry Friday, return on the 7pm ferry
Sunday. $284 per person double, $365 per person single. Includes
cancellation insurance and all taxes. For information and/or reservations
call Sandra or John at - Phone/fax: (250) 478-7190 or Email them at:
      Travel arrangements by Leisure Island Tours Ltd (BC Reg#563-3).

      Take the Bus from Alberta!
      Parsons Holiday Tours Ltd.

      A five day package - March 11th - 15th, 2004. The tour includes
Motorcoach transportation, 4 nights accommodation, Weekend admission to the
Cowboy Festival, and Bus shuttle to downtown Kamloops and Casino (as
requested). The accommodation will be walking distance to the Festival, ABC
Family Restaurant, and the Aberdeen Mall! Depart: Lacombe LMC, Red Deer
Holiday Inn, Olds Husky #2 Hwy, with pickups on #2 Highway!

      All for only - Price per person: Twin - $430 Single - $550.
      For more information phone: 1-800-590-9983 or (403)782-6341.
      Parsons Holiday Tours Ltd, Box 6111, Lacombe, AB, T4L 1X5.


Tales Of the Cariboo Trail

It's been nearly two hundred years,
since David Stuart rode up from the South
On a moccasin trail ten thousand years old,
from the Okanagan's mouth.

It was the trade route of the Shuswaps,
that would become the Cariboo trail.
Life line of British Columbia
before the coming of the rail.

The fur brigades and cattle drives,
the miners in search of gold,
Followed the winding valley paths,
as did the Human Beings of old.

From Kamloops to the Columbia,
Before the coming of the rails,
It was the life line of British Columbia,
and that road has many tales.

© 2004, Mike Puhallo

 For information on the Kamloops Cowboy Festival call Mike at
1-888-763-2224 email or check our website

Updated 2/21

Earlier announcement posted 9/9/03:

Kamloops Cowboy Festival March 12 -14 2004 Presented by the BC Cowboy Heritage Society  The best little cowboy fest in the whole darn West! BC Cowboy Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony, workshops and seminars, cowboy poetry, western music, Western Art and Gear Show.

Tour Bus packages available from Alberta! We have a great line up of Cowboy Poets and Western Entertainers from all over North America lined up for 2004. Our Saturday night feature performance was sold out last year so folks should get their tickets early!

Take a peek at our website call us 1-888-763-2224 or drop us a note BCCHS, Box 137, Kamloops BC V2C 5K3 


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2004 Information
7th Annual Canyon Country Western Arts Festival  Cedar City, Utah

The 7th Annual Canyon Country Western Arts Festival Slated For March 11-14, 2004

 CEDAR CITY, UT Surrounded by such pristine treasures as Bryce Canyon, Zion, and Cedar Breaks, the great American West will come alive at the 7th annual Canyon Country Western Arts Festival, March 11-14, 2004.  The festival will be held at the Sharwan Smith Center on the campus of Southern Utah University (SUU) in Cedar City, Utah. 

Dedicated to the preservation of the western music heritage that was made famous by such artists as the Sons of the Pioneers and late Roy Rogers and Gene Autry, the festival combines ongoing western music with a traditional cowboy poetry gathering. 

The Festival will kick off Thursday with the Western Heritage Banquet, featuring entertainment by singer R.W. Hampton, plus cowboy poets Phil and Don Kennington.  The banquet will be held at the Southern Utah University Great Hall from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  The cost is $25 per person and is sponsored by the SUU Block and Bridle Club. 

During the day on Friday and Saturday will be the Western Arts Festival.  The festival features ongoing western music and cowboy poetry plus quilt displays, western artists, vendors and a kid’s corral (Saturday only).  New this year will be the presentation of several cowboy documentaries, a wild horse adoption plus an improved and expanded working display area featuring demonstrations and artisans representing Native Americans, Mountain Men, Pioneers and The American Cowboy.   The day festival activities will run from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. each day.  Entrance fee is only $5.00 and includes a commemorative pin that allows admission for both days.

 At 7:00  p.m. on Friday evening, there will be western music variety show in the SUU Auditorium.  The cost is $10.  On Saturday evening, there will be an old fashioned cowboy concert, featuring the musical talents of up and coming musician Brenn Hill and famed cowboy poet Waddie Mitchell in their collaborative effort as "The Cowboy and The Kid."  The concert will also be held at the SUU Auditorium at 7 p.m. and admission is $15.   

The Western Arts Festival will conclude on Sunday with Cowboy Church, a non-denominational gathering, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Cedar City Livestock Auction.   Brenn Hill and R.W. Hampton will be featured at Cowboy Church. 

Tickets go on sale February 1st and can be obtained at the Iron County Visitors Center, 581 N. Main St in Cedar City or call 1-800-354-4849 (sorry, no credit cards). 

For more information concerning the Canyon Country Western Arts Festival, please call the Cedar City Area Tourism and Convention Bureau at 1-800-354-4849 or log onto  


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2004 Information
8th Annual Georgia Cowboy Gathering  Cartersville, Georgia

Doc Stovall tells us that the 8th Annual Georgia Cowboy Gathering, with a theme of "Women of the West," will be held at the Grand Theater in Cartersville, Georgia on March 12-13, 2004, sponsored by the Booth Western Art Museum.  Among the talent will be Devon Dawson, Ginnymac, Jean Prescott, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Jim Dunham, Jerry Warren, Doc Stovall, Ray Barker, and Joel Hayes. Stay tuned for more details or  email Doc Stovall: or call him at 770/948-5570.   See our feature about the gathering right herePosted 12/10

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2004 Information
Vinton Cowboy Poetry Show   Vinton, California

The Sierra Valley Grange in Vinton, Calif. presents its 18th annual VINTON COWBOY POETRY SHOW on March 19th and 20th, 2004 at the Vinton Grange Hall. Performers this year are Waddie Mitchell, Sourdough Slim, Richard Elloyan, and Zane Sterling.  Located only 30 miles from Reno, Nevada this Show is "California's oldest and best."

A home cooked corned beef and cabbage dinner will be served on Friday evening and a roast beef dinner will be served on Saturday.

For details contact Betty Ramelli:

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2004 Information
8th Annual RedRock Writing Seminar  St. George, Utah

Enjoy our 8th Annual RedRock Writing Seminar, March 26-27, 2004!
For information, registration, please contact Gary Christian by email  

2004 Chaparral Poetry Forum: Call for Entries
                       Redrock Writers Guild
      Contest Chair: LaVerna B. Johnson (email
Cholla Division: First Prize $200, second Prize $100, third Prize $50
     Any subject, any form, 40 lines or less.

Chaqueta Division: First Prize $100, second Prize $50, third Prize $25
     Southwest Theme: nature, people, history--any form, 40 lines or less

Chimera Division: First Prize $100, second prize $50, third Prize $25
     Imaginative or absurd/humorous/impossible/foolish--40 lines or less

Each Division will award three Honorable Mentions. All winning poems will be
published in the Chaparral Poetry Forum Chapbook, with selected readings at
the 2004 Redrock Writing Seminar, St. George, UT.

2004 Submission Guidelines--Each poem must be:
    1.  Original, any form, 40 lines or less, unpublished.
    2.  ³Typed² neatly on white 8 1/2 x 11 paper.
    3.  In good taste.
4.  Maximum of three poems each Division, nine poems total.

5.      SEND TWO COPIES of each poem. Type Division entered in top right
hand corner.  FIRST COPY: Below Division entered, type name,
address, and e-mail address. (Name/address sticker okay.)
    SECOND COPY ONLY: No name or address below Division title.

6. Entry fees: $2 per poem. Make check payable to Redrock Writers Guild.
7. Must be postmarked  on or before Jan. 15, 2004. No Certified Mail.
                   Please, no cash through the mail.
8. No poems will be returned. For a list of winners, please include
                   SASE with your submissions.
9. Submission indicates permission for winning poems to be published in a
chapbook which will be available with registration at the Redrock
Writing Seminar. After publication, all rights will revert to the author.
Chapbooks can obtained by non-seminar attendees for $5, plus $1 s&h.
                    MAIL ENTRIES TO:
D. Gary Christian, 2110 N. Blake Dr., Santa Clara, UT 84765.

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2004 Information
First Annual Florida Western Festival  Morriston, Florida

Amik Run Equestrian Center in Morriston, Florida will host the First Annual Florida Western Festival on Saturday and Sunday, March 27 and 28, 2004, featuring top name authentic western musical acts from across the USA. 

Entertainer's confirmed include Nationally acclaimed Cowboy Poet Waddie Mitchell, Western Music Association National Champion Yodeler and cowboy poet Gary McMahan, Judy Coder and the Pride of the Prairie, The Sisters of the Silver Sage (who recently won the WMA award for best original western song of 2003), Cowboy Envy, Cracker Cowboy Poet Hank Mattson, and quintessential cowboy poet Carl E. Sharp, designated by the Florida Legislature as Florida's Official Cowboy Poet. Additional acts to be announced January 1, 2004. Audience members of all ages will thrill to the musical heritage of the American West as these acts perform lively, heartwarming and unforgettable western music in the first event of this kind ever to be held in the state of Florida.

The Festival will also feature the $5000 Western Showdown Horse Show, The Florida Western and Equine Arts and Crafts Expo, The Chuckwagon Food Fest, The High Noon Western Fashion Show and Market, The Cowboy Tack Auction, The Go West Travel Expo and scores of vendors and exhibitors all centered around the themes of the West, Cowboys and Horses.

The Florida Western Festival is the perfect event for the entire family. Kids will enjoy learning rope tricks from real cowboys, taking a pony ride, posing for photographs with heroes of the Old West such as Wyatt Earp and the Lone Ranger, and meeting real Native Americans. Moms and Dads will enjoy shopping for magnificent western and equine themed arts and crafts. Even the Grandfolks will have a great time listening to favorite old-time western music reminiscent of the days of Roy Rogers and the Sons of the Pioneers.

Set on 200 beautiful rolling country acres in the heart of Florida horse and cattle country, but a short, easy drive from cities such as Ocala, Gainesville, Jacksonville, Orlando and Tampa, Amik Run Equestrian Center will be the perfect place to spend the beautiful last weekend of March, 2004.

To reserve tickets by credit card, call Amik Run's Florida Western Festival Hotline at (352) 528-4480 or email

Posted 1/26

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2004 Information
Kamloops Ranch and Country Show   Kamloops, British Columbia

Pioneering new concepts in Marketing 

From Mike Puhallo:

Last Year International Log Homes and T & H holdings of Kamloops BC teamed up with cowboy poet Mike Puhallo to try something new . First on a small scale with the Kamloops Ranch and Country Show March 29 & 30 and then moving on to a much larger event in Redmond Oregon May 16, 17 & 18.

According to Heather Gunning manager of T & H Holdings the Idea just seemed like a natural. "We where producing both types of events, and drawing a similar demographic, so why not combine them. She began testing the concept with The Ranch and Country Show in Kamloops a few years ago and in 2003, went the extra distance by hiring Mike Puhallo as talent coordinator to put together a stage show of Western music and Cowboy entertainment.

Combining a Log Home Show, Equine Trade Fair, with Clinics by top notch trainers and a stage show of Western Music and Cowboy Entertainment is already proving to be a winning combination.

Congratulations to Heather and her staff for putting together a first class event, that is leading the way in rural lifestyle marketing!

Contact T&H Holdings (250) 554 -0068 

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