Sheridan County Museums, Arts and Festivals Intrigue Visitors
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Adkins
To get a feel for Sheridan County’s culture and history, climb aboard Sheridan’s Historic Downtown Trolley, which departs from the Visitors Information Center on East Fifth Street. The city’s two historic trolleys are motorized replicas of the electric trolleys that operated on city streets between 1911 and 1926, and they take visitors to Sheridan's star attractions for just $1 per ride.
Sheridan County Museums and Historic Sites
Experience “how the West was won” one small town at a time at the Sheridan County Museum, where you can see artifacts detailing local history. The museum presents a local perspective on the history of the American West and features a gift shop, interactive exhibits, dioramas and Western art.
The Bozeman Trail Museum in nearby Big Horn is another place to explore local history. Housed in an 1879 log blacksmith shop, the museum focuses on the Cloud Peak Boulder, an old stone with names and dates believed to be carved by military scouts days before the Battle of the Little Bighorn fought in 1876. Kids love the museum’s old pipe organs and are welcome to tickle the ivories.
Love all things Western? Don’t miss The Don King Museum located inside King’s Saddlery, a Western tack store on Main Street in Sheridan. The King family devoted their lives to making award-winning saddles and ropes, and The Don King Museum houses more than three decades of the family’s collection of Western and cowboy memorabilia. Hundreds of saddles line the walls, along with preserved wagons, coaches, Indian artifacts, guns, Western tack and original artwork.
One of Sheridan’s most famous landmarks is the historic Sheridan Inn, built in 1892 and once owned by William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody. Although ownership of the inn has changed hands multiple times over the years, today it houses a gift shop and restaurant called 1893 Grille & Spirits, which serves Western-inspired cuisine for lunch and dinner seven days a week. Fundraising is ongoing to renovate the inn’s second and third floors, which will eventually make it a fully operational 22-room boutique hotel again.
Sheridan’s Wyoming Theater
You can’t miss the glowing marquis of the Wyoming Theater while strolling along Main Street in Sheridan. Built in 1923 as a vaudeville theater, the Wyoming Theater entertained Sheridan families for six decades before it closed in 1982. Thanks to concerned citizens, the theater was renovated and reopened in 1989, and today it hosts nationally known acts such as the Bellamy Brothers and children’s theatrical productions.
Downtown Sheridan is a big draw for art lovers, thanks to the prevalence of public artwork to be seen there. Pick up a “Art on Display” brochure at the Fifth Street Visitors Center to embark on a self-guided tour of the nearly 30 sites to view public art, from stained-glass windows in local churches to a bronze rhino sculpture.
Sheridan County Festivals
Sheridan County citizens celebrate in true Western style at the Big West Arts Festival every August on the front lawn of Sheridan College. The free event features an art show, live music, food and beverage vendors, and entertainment.
Downtown Sheridan also hosts the Third Thursday Street Festival each month from May through September. The popular community event has food vendors, demonstrations, raffles, music, steak cook-offs and more.