Giddy up, y’all — Cowtown is preparing for the 16th Annual National Day of the American Cowboy on Sat., July 23. The fourth Saturday of July honors the hardworking heritage + cowboy culture of the American West. The special commemoration was started by US Sen. Craig Thomas in 2005 — but it wasn’t until 2018 that the US Senate officially recognized the day as a national holiday.
Voted “Best Cowboy Tribute Event” in the US by American Cowboy magazine, the Stockyards’ National Day of the American Cowboy celebration has become an iconic Fort Worth tradition. Celebrate with live concerts, quirky contests + cowboy-themed activities from 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Start planning the day with these highlights:
Cowtown Coliseum Entertainment Plaza 🎵
- Fiddle Contest | 10-11:15 a.m.
- Justin Hewitt Band | 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Rodeo Plaza 🐂
- Armadillo Races | 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Cow Milking Contest | 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Stockyards Station ✨
- Cowboy Celebration Parade | 11:30 a.m.
- Old West Comedy Gun Fight Shows | 12-4:30 p.m.
Don’t miss the fan favorite — Riscky’s BBQ Rib-Eating Contest kicks off at 11 a.m. at 140 E. Exchange Ave. with a $5 admission fee paid at the door. Find more family-friendly festivities, like face painting + glitter tattoos here.
Can’t get enough of the cowboy culture? Check out some local museums showcasing Western heritage all year long, like the National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum (2029 N. Main St.), National Cowgirl Museum & Hall of Fame (1720 Gendy St.), and Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame (2515 Rodeo Plaza).
This article was authored by FTWtoday intern Hailey Lyon.