Celebrate the past as the old west comes alive at Bannack Days at Bannack State Park on Saturday, July 20 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Take in demonstrations of traditional handicrafts, walk up Hangman's Gulch to learn about buffalo guns, the infantry, and experience an 1860s gold camp. Try your luck at gold panning, hand-dip your own souvenir candle, or watch the blacksmith forge an incredible work of art from a flat piece of iron. Horse drawn wagon rides will be available throughout the day or if you prefer more modern transportation there is a Model AA truck motoring around the town.
Be sure to watch your step — Bannack has been known to have a few ruffians about. It is not uncommon for a gunfight to break out on main street or for people to be shouting from the hotel porch about one cause or another…imagine women wanting to vote.
Throughout both days there will be music in the air; bluegrass, barbershop, gospel and fiddlers to mention a few. Swing your partner on the green Sunday afternoon or step in time with the strolling musicians.
Special event admission to Bannack is $5 per person; children 8 and under are free. For a full schedule of events visit: http://stateparks.mt.gov/bannack/.
The re-enactments and crowds can be loud and scary for pets. Please leave your pets at home during this busy weekend. Parking is limited, so carpooling is encouraged. For more information, please call the park office at 406-834-3413.
Bannack State Park, located near Dillon, is a National Historic Landmark and the site of Montana's first major gold discovery on July 28, 1862. This strike set off a massive gold rush that swelled Bannack's population to over 3,000 by 1863. As the value of gold steadily dwindled, Bannack's bustling population was slowly lost. Today, over 50 original buildings line Main Street and their historic log and frame structures recall Montana's formative years.