Surrounded by miles of open lands, untouched terrain and incredible outdoor recreation opportunities sits Wyoming’s cultural and culinary hub—Casper. The city’s walkable downtown is filled with plentiful options to experience another side of Wyoming, with locally owned restaurants, watering holes, shops, coffeehouses, the Nicolaysen Art Museum and David Street Station—the city’s outdoor music venue and gathering area.
Start the day with breakfast at Eggingtons, one of the best breakfast places in the area. Next on the list: a visit to the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center. With a beautiful view of the city, the Trails Center provides an incredible history of the Casper area, including American Indian culture and information about the Oregon, California and Mormon trails, as well as the Pony Express. After touring the center, head back into town for lunch at one of the city’s food trucks. Spend the rest of the afternoon perusing downtown, with highlights that include Lou Talbert Ranch Outfitters, WyoMade Apparel, Cadillac Cowgirl, Art 321 and Scarlows Gallery. End the day with dinner at one of downtown’s restaurants. Suggestions include: Racca’s Pizzeria Napoletana, Gaslight Social, Branding Iron and Wonder Bar.
Fuel up on coffee at Metro Coffee Company, followed by a visit to Ugly Bug Fly Shop to check out the gear/fly boxes made by local guide and artist Ty Hallock. After visiting the Ugly Bug, head over to the Nicolaysen Art Museum. Housed in an old power company building, the Nicolaysen is watched over by an executive team made up of six women and has an impressive art collection that includes work from Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali. This year, in honor of the 150th anniversary of women’s suffrage in Wyoming, the museum is hosting four amateur artists in its new pop-up gallery space. Each artist will curate the space themselves, with featured artists include Bri Martin in March and April, Hailee Rushing in May and June, Michelle Martin in July and August, and Molly Box in September and October. In addition, during 2020—the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment—the museum will celebrate the “Year of the Woman” with an entire year of exhibits being by women artists. After soaking in the art, head to Backwards Distilling Company to enjoy one of their unique cocktails, created by co-owner and cocktail master Amber Pollock. End the night with dinner at FireRock Steakhouse.
Must-See Events and Add-on Activities
Housed on the campus of Casper College, the Tate Museum offers an incredible look at this part of the country during the Ice Age. The museum is a must-visit, especially to see Dee the Mammoth, an 11,600-year-old Columbian Mammoth who lives in the area, as well as a T-rex skeleton.
–Wyoming Women’s Expo
Held September 20-21, 2019, the Wyoming Women’s Expo is an event for women and about women that features keynote speakers, the latest in fashion and beauty, a chance to meet Wyoming women and more.
Currently in its first season, Opera Wyoming is the state’s premiere opera company and features performances at the Nicolaysen Art Museum.
Places to Stay
Casper has a variety of hotels, motels, campsites, lodges and more. View the whole list here.