The Buffalo Bill Center of the West hosts its annual free Holiday Open House on Saturday, December 3, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. The event coincides with a full slate of celebrations and activities in Cody, including the Christmas Stroll and Lighted Parade, the Festival of Trees, and Old Trail Town Christmas. The festivities together kick off the holiday season for the community and surrounding region.
While the Holiday Open House is free, the Center of the West asks that all attending share the spirit of the season by bringing a can of non-perishable food or new, unwrapped toy to share. The Center then contributes these donations to Cody Cupboard and Holiday Helpers for distribution to those in need throughout the community.
The Center decks the halls for the occasion, and serves up cookies and treats made by staff and volunteers. Santa Claus is in attendance all day to visit with children and hear their Christmas wishes. Live entertainment takes place in two venues throughout the day and includes school, family, and community groups, as well as local performing arts organizations. Programs offer something for everyone: holiday music by choruses, choirs, ensembles, and jazz bands; and dance in a variety of styles. Visit the Holiday Open House page for the full schedule.
The Center Store offers special holiday discounts the day of the Open House on merchandise ranging from books, jewelry, gifts, prints, and more (some exclusions apply). From 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., the Store also hosts a book signing by Bob Richard with his latest book, Cody to Yellowstone: Beartooth Loop, as well as his previous titles Cody to Yellowstone (via Highway 14, 16, 20) and Cody: the Man, the Town, the Legend.
The birds of the Draper Museum Raptor Experience, one of the Center’s most popular programs, get into the spirit of season for the Open House as well. Attendees can view the birds and ask questions of their handlers from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. in the Center’s Draper Natural History Museum.
The Holiday Open House offers an opportunity to view the special exhibition Invisible Boundaries: Exploring Yellowstone’s Great Animal Migrations, before it closes at the beginning of January. The popular, multi-disciplinary exhibition features a blend of science, photography, artwork, and videography as well as an innovative interactive map of seasonal elk migration routes in and out of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
Since 1917, the award-winning Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming, has devoted itself to sharing the story of the authentic American West. The Center is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. For additional information, visit centerofthewest.org or the Center’s Facebook page.