Considering that the Cody Yellowstone region covers 6,967 square miles, you’d think it would be near impossible to know many of its 30,000 residents.
In this corner of Wyoming, however, it quickly becomes apparent that it’s unusual to walk into a restaurant, store, bar or cowboy music show and not at least recognize the locals. As anyone who grew up in a small town can tell you, the person ringing up your groceries can be your neighbor three doors down and his kids are on your kids’ soccer team. Oh, and their coach operates the horseback riding concession at a local campground.
“It’s a little like everyone’s favorite watering hole,” said Ryan Hauck, executive director of the Park County Travel Council’s Cody Yellowstone, comprised of Cody, Powell and Meeteetse, Wyoming, and parts of Yellowstone National Park. “The faces become familiar, and pretty soon everybody knows your name.”
The open spaces contribute to this phenomenon. It’s easier to recognize a fellow angler when she is the only other person on the river. And on the road, it doesn’t take long before you recognize both a person and his vehicle.
The best way to deal with such familiarity … tap your glasses and say “Cheers.”
For more information on Cody, visit CodyYellowstone.org.