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Things to do in Cheyenne without breaking the bank

Boot tour art in front of the Children's Village at the Cheyenne Botanical Garden. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

Boot tour art in front of the Children's Village at the Cheyenne Botanical Garden. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

Outside the Cheyenne Botanical Garden. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

Outside the Cheyenne Botanical Garden. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

At the entrance to Vedauwoo Recreation Area in Medicine Bow National Forest. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

At the entrance to Vedauwoo Recreation Area in Medicine Bow National Forest. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

The Ames Monument, recognizing the Ames brothers who supported the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

The Ames Monument, recognizing the Ames brothers who supported the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. (U. S. Air Force photo by Glenn S. Robertson)

F. E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. --

I have lived in Cheyenne, Wyoming, for more than twenty years. When I chose to write this article, I thought that I knew nearly everything there was to know about the city and the surrounding area. After a bit of research, though, I found that there are a lot of things I did not know and there is a lot more to do than some might realize.

Yes, we all know that Cheyenne is home to Frontier Days, the world’s largest outdoor rodeo and western celebration. But, the rodeo lasts for 10 days and only comes once a year in July. Listed below are five relatively cost-free things to occupy your time in Cheyenne for the rest of the year.

If you’re into being outdoors, then you can take a short road trip just 27 miles west of Cheyenne into the Medicine Bow National Forest. Vedauwoo (which means “Land of the Earthborn Spirits”) is home to endless hiking trails or if you’re into climbing, then Vedauwoo has very unique ancient rock formations that are a must-see.

After leaving Vedauwoo, don’t head back to town just yet. Nearby, you will find Ames Monument, a 60- foot high granite pyramid built at the highest point on the Transcontinental Railroad and completed in 1882. The monument was dedicated to Oake and Oliver Ames, two brothers who were instrumental in the construction of the nation’s first Transcontinental Railroad.

Closer to home, explore Cheyenne and go on a a scavenger hunt as part of the Big Boots tour. The eight-foot tall cowboy boots are strategically located throughout the city, and painted by local artists to illustrate the history of Cheyenne and Wyoming. Maps of the boots locations can be found within the historical Cheyenne Depot in the Vistor Center. Once on the hunt, call (307) 316-0067 to listen to the artists reflect and tell stories about the significance of the images that they painted on their particular boot.

Are you a nature lover? Then breathe in some Wyoming fresh air at the Botanic Gardens (free admission). The newly renovated Grand Conservatory offers an incredible array of different types of plants, shrubs, and trees from around the world. While there, don’t forget to visit the family friendly Paul Smith Children’s Village or take a walk through the Community Vegetable Garden and greenhouse.

Show off your art skills and get to meet some local artists by participating in the Cheyenne Art Walk. The Art Tour is the second Thursday of the month from 5 to 8 p.m. The tour visits eleven different galleries and studios in the Cheyenne area.

The moral of this particular story is that that there are a lot of things to do in Cheyenne, all without emptying your wallet. Just get out and do some exploring.  For more information on the locations in the article and other things to do in Cheyenne, visit the following website: https://www.cheyenne.org.