Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cowboy Poetry Gathering ~ Day 3

It's a wee bit crisper this morning, 20 degrees, so we make it easy on ourselves and toddle across the parking lot to JR's for breakfast while the Jeep windows de-ice in the morning sun. We meet up with our friend Michael after breakfast and head out to the trade shows.

"Raku Vase with Horsehair"

The shows are at 4 different venues around town. A couple were easy to find, two were not: one in a small hotel conference room and another well hidden up the stairs to nowhere at Stockmans. I'm an artisan and have done fairs for over 20 years. There is something to be said for having all vendors at one place. It focuses shoppers on the artisans not the task of getting to the venues. It may be a matter of what space is available for the trade shows, with so much going on during the week, but I decided to email the Western Folklife Center and make the suggestion anyway.

"Bareback Rider"

The variety and quality of the work offered was astounding: handmade saddles and tack, quilts, cards, clothing and jewelry, custom boots and hats, furnishings and frames, lamps and sculptures, plus all varieties of wall art from photography to etchings. Each of us came home with a treasure or two.

"Desert Rose"

We took the afternoon off to rest up for the evening concert. Carol and I discovered a great little Italian place for dinner called Luciano's near the center of town. The concert opened with poetry and stories and closed with Wiley and the Wild West.  Wiley is the consummate performer: he has a great voice, is an amazing yodeler and has more moves that Dwight Yokum and Mick Jagger combined. We were either rolling in the aisles with laughter or at rapt attention enthralled with lyrics that told amazing stories of the West, of ranching, of rodeo and the characters that made it happen. A perfect closing to a grand adventure.

"Abandoned House in Montana"

No early night for us though, we again decide to play the penny slots and both Carol and I walk away with pockets jingling. Still not tired we decide to pack most of our stuff so we can get an early start in the morning to head for home.  Dreams of horses and the prairie.