If the city of Cheyenne is its own draw for group travel, Cheyenne Frontier Days is a destination within a destination.
In 1897, a ticket agent for Union Pacific Railroad came up with the idea of hosting “Cheyenne Day” to drum up business and boost ticket sales from Denver to Cheyenne.
Now in its 117th year, the outdoor rodeo and Western celebration is known as the “Daddy of ‘em All” and attracts thousands of visitors every summer, including national and international groups. The event sells about 3,000 group tickets every year.
The 10-day celebration runs July 19 to 28 this year and features nine rodeo performances, four parades and three pancake breakfasts. There are also nine nights of concerts, and this year’s acts include Lady Antebellum, Dwight Yoakam, Rascal Flatts and Toby Keith.
“Truly, for the country music enthusiast, these are top-name, A acts,” said Cheyenne Frontier Days marketing director Nicole Gamst.
Frontier Days also includes a carnival midway, a chuck wagon cook-off and cultural exhibits at local museums. Native Americans also have the Indian Village each year, where they demonstrate their culture and heritage through dance, musical instruments and storytelling, as well as exhibit booths, food and vendors.
“Anybody who’s a fun-seeker or who enjoys visiting the American West, anybody who likes history or culture or the Western niche — there’s something for all of them at Cheyenne Frontier Days,” Gamst said.
Cheyenne Convention and Visitors Bureau