Relive the sights and sounds of the old west at The Spirit of the West Cowboy Gathering. Cowboys stroll the streets of downtown Ellensburg mingling with the locals and city folk. Singers and poets are heard at free downtown venues main stage concerts or at open mic sessions. This festival offers a wide range of events that reflect a bygone era – Dutch oven cooking and a chuck wagon cook-off competitions in ranch roping and rough stock riding gear and art shows western and square dances a fiddle contest rodeo cowboy reunion main stage concerts and downtown venues all fused into one great event. The poets and musicians from national regional and local levels turn Ellensburg into a living postcard. Special Concert Celebrates American Music On February 16 the CWU Symphony Orchestra will join the Spirit of the West Cowboy Gathering to present a program of Colonial Civil War and American West music. On the program will be classic American tunes like Amazing Grace Shenandoah and Battle Hymn of the Republic along with music from Western movie soundtracks like The Alamo. The centerpiece of the concert is a performance of Aaron Copland’s Lincoln Portrait a musical poem using the text from the Gettysburg Address. The concert is February 16 2012 at 7pm at the Jerilyn S. McIntyre Music Building at CWU. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at ellensburgcowboygathering.com. For loads more information and to buy full weekend event tickets visit the website ellensburgcowboygathering.com. Tickets can also be purchased at the Kittitas County Chamber of Commerce office – in person or by calling 509-925-2002 or 888-925-2204.