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Travel Wyoming

Thursday Travel: Thermopolis Hosts Vintage Hat Show This Weekend

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

Call them what you want — hats, lids, chapeaus — there is no denying that the things people put on top of their heads have always been works of fashion.

So it makes sense that when a museum wants to host a fashion show, it looks to the tops of our heads.

The Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center in Thermopolis will host a “Vintage Hat Show” on Saturday featuring models wearing more than a century’s worth of hats collected by the museum over the years.

Marian Bender, a curator for the museum and the event’s organizer, said the idea for the show came to her when she was helping to put away hats from the 1950s donated to the museum.

“Then I found out we had a lot of different hats,” she said. “I thought ‘We need to show these.’”

An estimated 24 hats will be worn by models on the stage at the museum, with Bender providing narration explaining the features and history of each hat, along with a description of the materials used and acknowledgement of the donor.

The oldest hat on display will be a “picture hat,” a very large lady’s hat, from 1907. Also on display will be a bowler hat worn by a Thermopolis resident during his wedding in 1914 and a straw “boater,” a hat with a flat top and brim, from the 1920s.

Many of the hats will come from the 1940s and 1950s, Bender said.

“That really was the heyday, there were so many different styles,” she said.

The newest hat, from the 1960s, is a mink “cloche,” a fitted, bell-shaped hat, Bender said.

In addition, the show will feature many cowboy hats used through the years, she said.

Bender said the number of hats that will be shown will depend somewhat on the models available.

“If we don’t have the right-sized head to put it on, we can’t show the hats,” she said.

Models for the event are coming from across the community.

“I just opened it up,” she said. “We’ve got high school kids to older folks. Of course, I recruited my fellow (museum) staffers. We’ve got a couple members of our board. It’s really hard to find guys, though. They’re too bashful.”

The hat show will run from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the museum. For more information, visit http://thermopolismuseum.com/events/vintage-hat-show.

Other events scheduled for the weekend:

The Wyoming Outdoor Weekend and Expo 2021 in Lander on Saturday;
The Cheyenne Fine Art Exchange, where art lovers can trade their services for original pieces of art, at the Cheyenne Depot on Friday and Saturday;
Joshua’s First Days of Summer Block Party, featuring food, crafts, art vendors and live music at Joshua’s Storehouse in Casper;
The Trail Mix Run at Mike Sedar Park in Casper on Saturday;
The Firefighters 5K Obstacle Race, featuring an open house of the Rawlins Fire Department, on Saturday;
The Quarantine Showdown Livestock Show in Buffalo Friday through Sunday;
The Eaton Horse Drive through downtown Sheridan on Sunday, and
The Campbell County Shootout shooting contest at Gillette’s Cam-Plex on Saturday and Sunday.

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Wyoming Ranked One of the Top Places to Travel in 2021

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Travel Wyoming, the state’s tourism office, is “honored” to have been chosen as one of the top 50 places to travel in 2021 by Travel + Leisure magazine.

The magazine placed Wyoming at No. 50 apparently because its writers believe in saving the best for last. The entry about Wyoming in the magazine praised the small population, Wyoming’s beautiful state parks, the rodeos and much more.

“No one could have dreamed up a better marketing plan for Wyoming than social distancing,” the magazine said. “The country’s least-populated state has only six people per square mile, meaning it’s not only easy, but natural to stay safely apart.”

Piper Singer, spokeswoman for Travel Wyoming, told Cowboy State Daily it was an honor for the state to be placed among the magazine’s top 50 destinations and that visitors should thoughtfully consider that when making their travel plans this year.

“We know Wyoming will be on a lot of travelers’ minds this year as we saw the revival of the ‘Great American road trip’ this past summer as folks looked to explore the outdoors,” Singer said. “While Wyoming may be best known for our iconic national parks, some of the greatest outdoor experiences can be found in some of the lesser-known areas, including our 12 state parks, eight forests and hundreds of miles of hiking and biking trails.”

Singer urged visitors to be mindful of their impact on public lands, maintain a safe distance when viewing wildlife and visit the state’s lesser known attractions.

“We also encourage visitors to expand their trip route and explore the many hidden gems of Wyoming, which are often found in small towns all across the state,” she said.

Some of the other locations on the top 50 list included the U.S. National Parks (of which Wyoming has two), the Rocky Mountains (which Wyoming is near) and Denver’s Lower Highlands (LoHi) neighborhood, which is also near Wyoming.

Basically, the article is telling you to visit Wyoming, which is the best message we can ask for.

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Travel Wyoming: Wyoming History On Ice In Store For Cheyenne Visitors

in Travel/Travel Wyoming/Column

A depiction of Wyoming historical highlights on ice awaits people who visit Cheyenne’s Ice and Events Center this weekend.

On Saturday, the center’s 23 ice skating students will put on their annual performance, this year titled “Skating Through Wyoming: A Historical Ice Skating Musical.”

“It’s kind of a yearly thing we do to show off what the skaters have learned in the year,” said Taylor Bassett, the Ice and Events Center’s program and event coordinator. “The coaches thought that because of the historic events Wyoming celebrated this year and last year, we would do some Wyoming things and then make it more musical and theatrical.”

The center’s students, ranging in age from 4 to 18, will take part in performances depicting important points in Wyoming’s history, such as women winning the right to vote.

The students at the center, which is involved in the national “Learn to Skate” program, will perform in groups, as duos and as soloists in putting on the show, Bassett said.

“We’re starting from the beginning, with Native Americans and the history with them and working our way up to more modern day stuff,” she said.

Similar programs are held each year as the center nears the end of its ice season, Bassett said.

Doors at the Ice and Events Center will open for the performance at 6 p.m., with the show scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $5.

For more information, visit Cheyenne’s events page at 


Travel Wyoming: Western Wyoming Sportsman’s Expo in Rock Springs

in Travel

A plethora of items designed to make the great outdoors even greater will be on display this weekend in Rock Springs.

The Western Wyoming Sportsman’s Expo will be held Friday through Sunday at the Sweetwater Events Complex.

The expo, now in its fifth year, features vendors showing good such as off-road vehicles, boats and campers, along with fishing and hunting equipment, cookware and camping equipment.

“We also have some western decor,” said Debi Knezovich, whose company Wyoming Home Show is putting on the expo. “There will also be some antler jewelry. It’s not just ATVs and campers and guns and knives.”

Kenzovich has put on other shows throughout the year in Rock Springs, such as the Wyoming Home Show and Home and Holiday Show, for 24 years.

The Sportsman’s Expo came about as recognition of what people do for fun in the state, Knezovich said.

“It’s kind of our lifestyle up in this area and that’s why we live in Wyoming,” she said.

In addition to the equipment and gear on display, several outfitters from Alaska and Canada will be attending the expo, Knezovich said.

“So if you want to plan a hunting trip, there will be outfitters on-site to answer those questions,” she said.

Booths with groups offering educational information will also be set up, as will a “mini golf course” where people can test golfing equipment.

The expo runs from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.

For more information, visit the event’s website at https://wyominghomeshow.com/3.

Travel Wyoming: Skijoring in Saratoga

in Column

A racing event that pairs skiers with horses is expected to draw more than 800 people to Saratoga this weekend for the community’s annual skijoring races.

The Saratoga Skijoring Races, now in their fourth year, will see competitors from across the Rocky Mountain West work during the the weekend to post the best time at the Buck Springs Race Track east of Saratoga. 

Saratoga’s race has become one of the major skijoring events for the region, said race organizer Will Faust. In fact, online pre-registration for competitors has been closed because the early racing slots have been filled, he said.

“We have 100 racers in the novice division each day,” he said. “The town is full. It’s become one of the more competitive skijoring races in the country.”

Join us on February 8th and 9th in Saratoga, Wyoming to experience the excitement of Skijoring. www.saratogaskijoring.com

Posted by Saratoga Skijoring on Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Registrations will still be accepted on Friday at the Wolf Hotel from 2 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In skijoring, a skier is pulled by a horse along a track marked by slalom turns, jumps and rings hung from ropes that are to be collected by the skier.

Competition each day on the Buck Springs Race Track’s 700-foot skijoring track will feature teams broken into several different divisions, one for youths, one for novices and several “open class” divisions, based on the time in which the racers complete the run.

“The novice category, these folks are just out to do it for fun,” Faust said. “They’re just in it for the experience. It’s slower and they’ve got less competitive horses. We’ve got about 20 teams in that category.”

The teams in the “open” competition, however, are usually more experienced.

“That’s where people bring in the faster horses, that’s the more competitive one,” Faust said. “The skiers can hit 50 mph on the outside turns. That makes for some pretty fun watching.”

Racers are planning to come to Saratoga from as far north as Kalispell, Montana, and as far south as Durango, Colorado, near the New Mexico border, Faust said.

The cost to register is $25 per person or $50 per team in the open division and $20 per person or $40 per team in the amateur/novice division. There is no registration fee for those under 18 competing in the youth division.

Winners from each day’s races will win prizes, as will winners with the best average time from Saturday and Sunday’s races. Faust said the prize money will total about $11,000.

“We’ve got some nice belt buckles for the winners of each division as well,” Faust said.

Some 600 to 800 spectators are expected to attend the event, Faust said. The cost to attend the race is $5, although children under the age of 12 can attend at no cost.

Activities begin Friday with racer registration and a welcome party at the Wolf Hotel. Races will begin Saturday at 9:30 a.m. The day’s activities Saturday will wrap up with a concert by Chancey Williams and the Younger Brothers Band. Racing will begin Sunday at 10 a.m. 

Money raised through admission fees and contributions will be used to finance the Lions Club’s other activities in Saratoga, such as its annual Kids Fishing Day.

For more information on the Saratoga Skijoring Races, visit the event’s website or its Facebook page.

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