About This Festival
From the Organizer
The National Cowboy Poetry Gathering is six days of poetry, music, dancing, workshops, exhibits, conversations, food and fellowship, rooted in tradition but focused on today’s rural West. The Elko Cowboy Poetry Gathering began 32 years ago as a place where Western ranchers and cowboys could come together to share poems about their lives working cattle. From the beginning, it was clear these men and women had found their tribe, an artistic community that few knew existed. Three decades later, the tribe has grown to a small nation of Western poets, musicians and storytellers, performing across the country, sharing their stories of hard work, heartbreak and hilarity, and what it means to make your way in the rangeland West. The Elko Gathering was renamed the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering thanks to an act of Congress. Known simply as Elko to many, the Gathering embraces its role as a pilgrimage destination for thousands of ranch folk and others who love the West and come to learn and experience art that grows from a connection to the rhythms of earth and sky. Join us in Elko to celebrate the arts and cultures of the American West.