Historic downtown Cheyenne is very walkable. Union Station and the State Capitol face each other, with about ten blocks in between. Union Station is now a museum and restaurant; the only public transportation to Cheyenne is by bus.
I arrived in Cheyenne in October and found many of the tourist destinations closed for the season. There are no trolley tours after October 1. However, Cheyenne does a very good job of providing free walking tours, which are available online and in printed form at Union Station. There are markers at several historical sites with telephone numbers; just dial in to learn more information. Very clever!
Just around the corner from Union Station is the historic Atlas Theater, which continues to host live performances. The iconic Wrangler sign is also still Downtown, but, alas, the store inside is now a Boot Barn.
Parking in downtown Cheyenne is free. There are no parking meters. And, if you have an out-of-state license plate, you can park for free all day in the parking garage. This is a great benefit to the military folks who live nearby, as Warren Air Force Base is in Cheyenne.
In the Wyoming Capitol, I was shocked and pleased that I could park directly in front of the Capitol Building, for free. Entering the Capitol, there were no metal detectors or security guards. There is a lot to be said for small town living.
Like Seattle with its pigs and Berlin with its bears, Cheyenne has cowboy boots designed by artists, auctioned, and placed around the downtown area. It is a very charming addition to the town.
I located the local Eagles aerie, which boasts that it is the “Teddy Roosevelt Lodge.” Alas, the beautiful original building burned down in the 1940s, and this took its place:
I phoned the lodge to inquire about weekend activities. There is no food, no karaoke, and no social events of any kind. There is only happy hour, and then, more drinking. I did not go.
For town of only 64,000 people, Cheyenne supports two Walmarts. Leaving the downtown area into the land of strip malls, Cheyenne is as homogenized as the rest of the country, with Borders bookstores, Starbucks, Bed Bath and Beyond, and Buffalo Wild Wings, to name a few. There are two chains in the Cheyenne area that we do not have in the Pacific Northwest,
which made me snicker like Beavis & Butthead. Both are convenient stores/gas stations: The Kum and Go, and The Loaf’N Jug.
Cheyenne is approximately one hour from Laramie and one and a half hours from Denver. I loved its small town atmosphere and the efforts to preserve its history. However, I don’t think I could get through a Wyoming winter. Those Chinook winds bring the temperature to below zero, and after living one year in Oklahoma as a teen, I have been wind-blown enough.