Often referred to as the “Last of the Old West”, Jackson Hole, Wyoming, attracts visitors from all over the country who want to get a true taste of American history. Each year in May, the town celebrates its unique culture and heritage with Old West Days, a weekend-long festival full of exciting events including live musical performances, rodeo events, tours, arts and crafts, and much more. Just a ten-minute drive from the Bentwood Inn, you’ll watch in awe as mountain men compete in a bow and arrow competition, meet some real cowboys and gunslingers, and enjoy the talents of local poets and musicians. Between the line dancing and fiddles playing, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into another world! Here are some of our favorite things to see at the Old West Days.
Visit the Annual Old West Days in Jackson Hole
Jackson Hole Shootout
Put ’em up! Every Monday through Saturday during the Old West Days, patrons gather in Jackson Town Square to experience a Wyoming tradition. Each evening at 6 PM, spectators can enjoy ice cream and other refreshments while watching the longest-running gunfight in the United States. It’s said that the outlaw cowboy Clover the Killer and the Cache Creek Posse (the good guys) started the shootout show with a mission to attract visitors to the area and battled each other in the streets using guns, horses, and various characters. The Shootout was an immediate success that drew huge crowds, and has had an estimated 4 million witnesses since 1957.
Jackson Hole Rodeo
Visitors can enjoy another western Wyoming staple on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8 PM. The Jackson Hole Rodeo takes place at the Teton County Fairgrounds and provides two hours of excitement for audience members of all ages. You’ll watch as cowboys tackle a variety of competitions including bull riding, barrel racing, and roping, and can enjoy a full concession bar stocked with beer, sodas, burgers, and hot dogs. With all of its heart-pumping thrills, a trip to the rodeo is the perfect way to spend a summer night in Jackson Hole.
Jackson Hole Memorial Day Parade
Mountain men, covered wagons, vintage cars, and legendary gunslingers will all be in attendance at the Old West Days parade. As the longest-running horse-drawn parade in the west, this event showcases local veterans, groups, and entertainers and celebrates Jackson Hole’s community. After the parade, grab the kids and check out Old Town Entertainment with live music, crafts, activities, or enjoy a stage coach ride through the historic downtown streets.
Old West Brewfest
A favorite of Jackson Hole locals and visitors, guests can try a sampling of an age-old craft at the Old West Brewfest. More than a dozen regional craft breweries will gather under one tent, offering their best beers to tasters and competing for the coveted Golden Boot Award. Be sure to submit your vote for your favorite brew!
The Best of the West at the Bentwood Inn
It may seem impossible to see all of the Old West into one afternoon, so spending an entire weekend in Jackson Hole is the best way to make the most of your trip! When searching for the perfect homestead in between events, look no further than our beautiful bed and breakfast. Featuring cozy cabin-like rooms, country charm, and spectacular views of the Tetons, you’ll feel like a Jackson Hole native in no time. Don’t forget your cowboy boots!
Photo Credit: DennyThurstonPhotography | Thinkstock