Cheyenne Frontier Days – Head to Wyoming for the World’s Largest Outdoor Rodeo This Summer!
The Annual Cheyenne Frontier Days Festival is held for a full ten days during July. The Cheyenne Festival has 120 years of rodeo success behind it and a loyal fan base that is generations strong. Each year at the Cheyenne Frontier Days Festival, over 1,200 contestants enter the rodeo competitions to compete for prizes to the tune of $1 million.
Ten Days of Frontier Fun
During this week long festival, Cheyenne Frontier Days features many kinds of different rodeo competitions. From championship bull riding, to concerts featuring today’s rock and country hits, the Cheyenne Frontier Days Festival features entertainment for the whole family.
Cheyenne Frontier Days is rooted in community from the first day the doors open until the night they close. With 10 committees and hundreds of volunteers, the Cheyenne Frontier Days Festival relies heavily on the support and service of committed volunteers.
History of Cheyenne Frontier Days
Since 1897, Cheyenne Fronteir Days has been praised as the world’s largest Western Celebration and Outdoor Rodeo. The original Frontier Days showcased bucking bronco riding, pony races, and contests featuring steer roping. The entertainment during and after the first Frontier Days featured the typical day-to-day activities of real cowboys. A century, and then some, later sees Cheyenne Frontier Days as the full-on ten day Western, horse wrangling madness rodeo that everyone knows and loves. Cheyenne Frontier Days currently ranks ad one of the best 10 Summer Festivals for families to visit.
Country Stars & Bull Riding
One of the best things about Cheyenne Frontier Days is the music! Country crooners and raging rock bands alike grace the stage for nights of music you won’t forget. The festival brings in big named singers like Kenny Chesney, KISS, Florida Georgia Line, Fall Out Boy, Billy Currington, Sam Hunt, and many more!
Additionally to the concerts at night, Cheyenne Frontier Days also features professional bull riding as a evening activity.
The Cheyenne Rodeo: The Daddy of ‘Em All
With over $1 million dollars in prizes, it’s no wonder Cheyenne Frontier Days calls their rodeo shows and competitions “The Daddy of ‘Em All”. The rodeo events are split up into roughstock events, racing on the track and timed events. Additionally, the Bull Riding championships are held as onlookers wait for the winner to be crowned.
Cheyenne Frontier Days roughstock events include activities like saddle bronc riding, bull riding and bareback riding. During these events, the cowboy is tested on his own personal performance as well as how he interacts with his animal.
Timed events at Cheyenne Frontier Days include tie-down roping, team roping, steer wrestling, and barrel racing. In all these events, steers and calves get a head start of 30 feet. 10 seconds will be added to a cowboys time if he leaves his boy too soon.
In timed events (steer wrestling, team roping, tie-down roping, barrel racing and wrestling and the roping events, calves and steers are allowed a 30 foot head start, starting from the hand-pulled barrier at Chute 9 at the south end of the arena. A 10 second penalty is added for leaving the box early. In contrast to the cowboys being the majority of the participants in these events, barrel racing features only women.
Cheyenne Frontier Days Pricing and Tickets
When considering what tickets to purchase for Cheyenne Frontier Days, try to plan out how long you want to stay and how often your family may return—it just may be easier to grab that seasonal pass instead. Season Pass Carnival Armbands start at $70 per adult and go to $100 per adult in January and $125 during July. This ticket allows the attendee unlimited rides in the carnival during the festival. Seasonal passes include gate admission. Day passes start at $30 per adult and four-day passes are $60 per adult.
Where to Stay
Check out the Cheyenne Frontier Day website for discounts on hotel reservations- many places are within walking distance of the fair grounds or offer some form of transportation to get you and your family there. Book early, you don’t want to get stuck with a hotel halfway across town.
Have a Grand Time at the Grand Parade
Children and adults alike tend to flock to the Grand Parade at Cheyenne Festival Days. The parade takes place every other day during the festival. Starting at the Capitol building on East 24th, then to 18th street, Central Avenue, Casey Blvd and 24th Street. The parade is one of the most family friendly parts of the festival featuring life music from bands, antique horse and buggies, and floats.
Thunderbird Show and Fort DA Russel Days
In 1953, the US Air Force Thunderbirds began their tradition by performing their first air show for civilians at Cheyenne Frontier Days. Every year the Thunderbirds return to perform an air show that Wednesday of the festival. The air show starts at 9:30 a.m. and is one of the most impressive sights of the festival. Due to the nature of this event, some roads will be closed through its duration, be aware there may be traffic.
Fort DA Russel, the local air base, holds tours and an open hours for three days during Cheyenne Frontier Days. The base will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Festival Fare and Pancake Breakfasts
Cheyenne Frontier Days’ hospitality spirit doesn’t stop with the western activities—the food is a work of true southern art as well. From barbecue to deep fried treats, there is something for the western lover in everyone. When it comes to the first meal of the day, pancake breakfasts are a complimentary staple by the festival on parade days. Starting at 7:30 each of the days the parade is running, the Masons simultaneously throw a breakfast for those attending. Following this breakfast, attendees can find complimentary lunch at some of the local churches.
Carnival Fun and Games
During Cheyenne Frontier Days, the carnival sets up at the very beginning of the festival for two hours in the morning, starting at 10:30 a.m. Entrance is just $30 per day. To purchase, visit the CFD website.
Historical Sites Throughout the Festival and City
During Cheyenne Frontier Days a theatrical group called The Cheyenne gunslingers provide entertainment during the Wild West sections starting at noon. The actors perform gunfights and the like for the crowd to watch.
In addition to viewing the gun fighting performances, attendees may be interested in stopping by The Indian Village located relatively close to the fairgrounds. The Indian Village showcases the traditional art, crafts and food of the Native Americans in Cheyenne. Within the Indian Village are the performing acts Dance Group and Little Sun Drum from the Wind River Reservation that provide free entertainment for guests.
Welcome to the Frontier Town
Frontier Town is a trip through history of sorts for visitors. At Frontier Town, guests can talk and shop with Western merchants, artists, crafts makers, and guests from significant times in Western history. These “guests” include the likes of Buffalo Bill, Wyat Earp, Lillie Langtry, and many more. Frontier Town opens every day of Cheyenne Frontier Days.
Playing at the theatre nearby Cheyenne Frontier Days is The Old Fashioned Melodrama—a nightly show for family that features a typical western villain vs. hero type of fight. Tickets start at $15 for adults.
Arriving at the Festival
Plan out how you will arrive to Cheyenne Frontier Days. If you intend to park, do arrive early as many of the nearby parking lots will fill up fast. Whatever you do, don’t park illegally, your car will be towed and you will end up with a large fine. If looking for alternatives to driving yourself, consider using the Park & Ride services provided by the festival. You can park your vehicle remotely and shuttle to the fairgrounds. Additionally, Cheyenne offers public transportation that runs every 15 and 45 minutes for your convenience.
What to Bring to the Frontier
When packing for Cheyenne Frontier Days first and foremost consider the west! Do wear cowboy or cowgirl attire- and lot’s of it! People go all out when dressing for this festival. Wear the boots, the fringed vests, the button down shirts, the leather—there’s no such thing as too much frontier inspired attire. However, you may want to leave your own horse at home.
Additionally, when dressing for Cheyenne Frontier Days consider the weather. It will undoubtedly be hot—Wyoming in the summer is pretty much dessert weather. Dress wearing light clothing, but beware of the sun. Bring sunblock and enough coverage to protect your self like a sunhat, visor, bandana or other headwear. Carry a poncho or an umbrella as it may rain.
When thinking about what to carry in your suitcase, plan accordingly for your stay. If you’re staying the entire ten days of the Cheyenne Frontier Days bring comfortable walking shoes—you’re going to need them! Take bug repellant, medicine, antacids for that festival food, and lots of water. Due to the fact that this festival is mainly outdoors, it is very likely that you may get dehydrated quickly. Make sure you take your family and your sense of adventure and love for all things western with you!
When booking your summer vacation this year, consider a trip out west. Cheyenne Frontier Days is just the rodeo you’ve been waiting for!
Visit information about festivals section to explore a full list of festivals happening around the world yearly!