Wheatland is blessed with many talented artisans, including sculptors, painters, and crafters. Probably the art form you will notice most when in Wheatland (and especially downtown) are the many murals on the walls of government and private buildings. For the most part, these wonderful murals which tell the history of Wheatland and Platte County so well are due to the talent and hard work of the Platte County Art Guild. The Pocket Park, which is located one block south of the Courthouse in downtown Wheatland, has murals that were done by Joe Arnold of Laramie in 2000. In addition there are three art galleries in Wheatland, including the Gilchrist Gallery downtown, the Wyoming Trails Art Gallery on 16th Street, and Stohl’s Taxidermy, also located downtown, where a collection of Wade Stohl’s beautifully done wildlife mounts are on display.
In addition to the miniature version of the Statue of Liberty that was done shortly after WWII and stands proudly over the Platte County Courthouse lawn there are 2 statues in Wheatland that were done by local sculptor Carl Jensen who has done sculpting for many years and has works of his throughout Wyoming and the United States, including statues at the Wyoming State Fairgrounds in Douglas. One of the statues is located on the northwest corner of the Courthouse lawn and is called “The Irrigator.” The second of Carl Jensen’s statues is that of a soldier that stands guard at the west entrance to the Platte County Library.
Wheatland is host to several great events that focus on family, art and the culture of the area. The Festival of Lights is held the last Friday in November to celebrate the beginning of the Christmas season and includes an evening parade, the lighting of the Courthouse lawn, the decorating of nearly every façade in the downtown, the arrival of Santa Claus and Christmas Tree Lane, an annual display of Christmas trees as well as a contest where organizations, businesses and individuals decorate Christmas trees at the library as a fundraiser.
For more information, visit the Platte County Economic Development website www.pcedwyo.org.