Celebrating the Spirit of the West at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering

Christina Barr

It's always exciting to attend the programs Nevada Humanities supports with partnerships and grants, and the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering - held in Elko each year - is no exception. Nevada Humanities has been supporting the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering since 1984, when the first Gathering was being planned. The Gathering has grown enormously since then, and we're proud to have been part of the group that helped plant the seed.

This year I had the pleasure of joining cowboy poet and rancher Randy Rieman in welcoming attendees to a special Nevada Humanities funded session on Evidence Based Horsemanship. Neurobiologist Dr. Stephen Peters and horse trainer and clinician Martin Black introduced us all to a deeper understanding of the relationship between the science of neurobiology and a trainer's hose sense in compassionately training and conditioning horses. Randy promised us that we would never look at horses the same way again after listening to Peters and Black speak, and I can say he was absolutely right. I now have a much deeper understanding of the mind of a horse - and the role in science and tradition in getting us there.

I'm proud to be part of an organization that realizes the value in presenting such meaningful, practical, and creative work to people who will use it on the ground to better their lives and those of the animals who join in their work. Way to go, Western Folklife Center!

For more information about Evidence Based Horsemanship visit http://www.evidence-basedhorsemanship.com/. For more information about the Western Folklife Center and the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering visit http://www.westernfolklife.org/National-Cowboy-Poetry-Gathering-General-....