Western poets and entertainers converge on Nevada's oldest settlement for the first Genoa Cowboy Poetry & Music Festival, April 29-May 2. The festival also features 80 workshops of Western crafts, folk stories and history at a dozen venues around the town.
Food includes ranch grub, Dutch oven-cooked specialties, pancake breakfasts and spaghetti, served with spaghetti-Western movies. Visitors have the chance to chat with Chautauqua-style presenters Mark Twain, Sarah Winnemucca and Wyatt Earp.
Great Basin and California Maidu tribes offer crafts, art, dances, cultural presentations, and an Indian taco sale at the Native American Cultural and Historic Center. Tours of Nevada's oldest ranch, Trimmer Ranch No. 1, and a pleasure ride are scheduled.
Day passes allow festival-goers to enter most workshops and demonstrations, the Native American Cultural and Historic Center, some cowboy poetry and music events Friday and Saturday, and cowboy church on Sunday. A one-day pass is $20 per adult and $10 per child, 12 and younger. Two-day passes are $35 adult and $15 child.
Additional tickets required for a Western dance, special tours and performances by cowboy poets and musicians including Waddie Mitchell, Paul Zarzyski, Dave Stamey, Don Edwards, Larry Maurice, Richard Elloyan and Sourdough Slim, all veterans of the National Cowboy Poetry Festival in Elko, as well as Virginia City's Lacey J. Dalton and David John and the Comstock Cowboys. Poetry and music performance tickets are $10 to $35.
Western artwork will be displayed in galleries at the Pink House, Rustic Romance Barn, Tieg Building and the former Itildo Realty office, sponsored by Lone Tree Gallery in Minden.
The festival kicks off 5-7 p.m. April 29 with a cowboy dinner of roast beef, Basque beans, salad and dessert by Trimmer Outpost and JT Basque Bar & Dining Room served in the Genoa Firehouse. Cost is $20. Dinner is followed by cowboy poetry and music at 7 p.m. at Mormon Station Stockade. Cost is $30. These two events don't require day pass.
The Basque Club serves steak and lamb with salads and paella at the cowboy dinner, 5-7 p.m. April 30, at the Genoa Firehouse. Cost is $20.
The Genoa Volunteer Fire Department hosts a dinner of beef stew, salad, bread and dessert, 5-7 p.m. May 1, at the firehouse. Cost is $20.
The Masons host a flapjack breakfast and cowboy church, 8 a.m. May 2, at the Genoa Church. Cost is $5.
A full schedule of events and tickets available at genoacowboyfestival.com
The Cowboy Poetry & Music Festival is sponsored by the Town of Genoa and the Carson Valley Arts Council. Tickets available at the Genoa Town Offices, 2289 Main St., Genoa, or 782-8696, or from the arts council, 782-8207.