All are Invited to the Wyoming Sheep and Wool FestivalAll are Invited to the
By Alison Crane, Wyoming Wool Growers Association
The Wyoming Wool Growers Association (WWGA), Wyoming SHEEP Foundation and the Wyoming Wool Initiative would like to invite everyone to the First Annual Wyoming Sheep and Wool Festival in Kemmerer June 30-July 2.
This is gearing up to be an exciting event to celebrate the sheep and wool industries and give the public the chance to experience firsthand what it’s like to be a sheepherder. The event is free to everyone.
Festival commences on June 30
On June 30, the festival will commence with a self-guided driving tour of the local sheep trails from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. – a map will be provided in the festival program and on the website.
At 4 p.m., events will move to the South Lincoln Training and Event Center, starting with a range talk from University of Wyoming (UW) Extension Educator Barton Stam, leading into the opening reception, which will begin at 5:30 p.m. with a juried Art and Woolcraft Show.
The opening reception will feature freshly roasted lamb and other sides, as well as a walk through of art for the public to decide on a People’s Choice Award and a Children’s Choice Award.
Also during the reception, beginning at 6:30 p.m., a historical, multi-generational sheepherder panel will discuss the industry – from changes over the generations to the daily challenges they face as Western range sheep ranchers.
Activities continue on July 1
The Vendor Fair will kick things off on July 1 at the Triangle Park in downtown Kemmerer from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. There will be educational and interactive demonstration booths, as well as product vendors. A list of vendors in attendance will be provided on the website.
The Art and Woolcraft Show will also open at 9 a.m. in the South Lincoln Training and Event Center for the public to view and vote, while also surveying for the silent auction later that evening.
The first educational program for the day, “Lamb. It’s What’s For Dinner,” a lamb cooking demonstration from UW Meat Scientists Warrie Means, PhD, and Cody Gifford, PhD, will take place on the Triangle at 10:30 a.m.
The second educational program will be held at 2 p.m. at the South Lincoln Training and Event Center, entitled “Non-Traditional Sheep Market insights,” presented by UW’s Whit Stewart, PhD and John Kane of Madison, Wis.
UW will also host a wool learning kiosk on the Triangle along with a Hand-spinning Fleece Auction on the Triangle. All of the events of the day will commence into the Sheepherders Come Bye Awards Dinner from 6-8 p.m. where we will honor WWGA’s annual award winners, the Wyoming Wool Initiative’s Lamb-A-Year awards and the art and woolcraft awards.
The dinner will be held at the South Lincoln Training and Event Center and is the only ticketed event of the festival. Following the Sheepherders Come Bye, Colby Acuff will kick off the barn dance with a live show at 8 p.m. This is a free show for the community, general public and local sheep ranchers.
Celebration wraps up on July 2
The last day of the festival, July 2, will begin at 9 a.m. with the final educational program from WWGA Executive Director Alison Crane, PhD, discussing the newly implemented Food and Drug Administration’s ruling on antibiotic usage in livestock and what it means for sheep producers.
WWGA’s summer business meeting will begin at 9:45 a.m. to conduct annual business and will conclude at 12 p.m.
We hope everyone will come celebrate the Wyoming sheep and wool industries with us, even if they have never seen a sheep before. This is the perfect weekend to not only see sheep but to learn so much about the amazing industry.
The festival would not be possible without so many of our sponsors throughout the state, especially the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, Wyoming Humanities Council and the Wyoming Arts Council. Thank you!
Please visit our website wyomingsheepandwoolfestival.com to see all of the available vendors and sponsors.
Alison Crane is the executive director of WWGA. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.