Casper is big enough to have the advantages of a big city like national chains, good hospitals and good schools. It is also small enough that we don't have the pollution or traffic that is problematic in big cities. With a population of just under 60,000, it still has that small town feel. We also have great outdoor sports all year around with the North Platte River running through town and Casper Mountain just a short drive away.
Although the majority of my shopping takes place at the big box stores you find everywhere, I like to shop for clothes at Fashion Crossroads [216 E 2nd St]. They get some great bargains and have good quality and fashionable clothing for even larger sizes. If you want quality western wear, the place to go is Lou Taubert Ranch Outfitters [125 E 2nd St]. Lou Taubert is world famous for its western wear. They were even the site for the Wyoming stop by Al Roker as he tried to set the world record for forecasting in all 50 states in the shortest amount of time. For help with any kind of photography, our local Canon Distributer is Wyoming Camera Outfitters [128 W 2nd St]. There is also the Eastridge Mall [601 SE Wyoming Blvd], but most of the stores there are chains. If you really want to visit a mall setting but want to shop local business, try Sunrise Shopping Center [4000 S Poplar St]. Situated near the base of Casper Mountain, Sunrise offers mostly local stores, but does have some chain stores, too. It is well worth a visit.
Besides Hobby Lobby [2911 E 2nd St] and Hancock Fabrics [2125 E 12th St], we have several local shops as well. Prism Quilt & Sew [114 E 2nd St] carries everything you would need to quilt or sew whatever you want. Dancing Sheep Yarn & Fiber [122 E 2nd St] sells yarn of all kinds, but they specialize in wool and other fibers that you might not be able to get at the chains including locally grown alpaca yarn. Jade Elephant Beads [126 E 2nd St] is just for beading crafts and has a variety of glass and mineral beads from around the world and right here in Wyoming. All of these stores are within a few steps of each other.
Local crafters can sell their wares at one of the many Craft fairs held throughout the year, the most prominent being held at Sunrise at least one each season and two before Christmas. A recent addition to our downtown area is WyoMade. WyoMade [116 E 2nd St] is a shop that specializes in crafts and art made in Wyoming. They have everything from clothing to knick-knacks made by hand and with Love right here in Wyoming, much of it imprinted with the bucking bronc, the registered trademark for the state of Wyoming.
Casper is a city filled with a rich history from the wagon trails--Oregon, California and Mormon--that cross here to the Pony express to the ranching and oil industries that made Wyoming the state it is. There are several museums that tell the history, educate on the animals and fossils and display our local art scene. You can find this all at Casper College [125 College Dr]. They have the Tate Geological Museum [125 College Dr], Werner Wildlife Museum [405 E 15th St], and a museum in the Goodstein Visual Arts Center [125 College Dr]. Casper Mountain  is good in all seasons for enjoying the outdoors with many skiing and hiking trails as well as a braille trail for the enjoyment of more than just the blind. All of these are good for photography, painting and drawing. If you aren't into the outdoors, stop by the Natrona County Public Library [307 E 2nd St] (NCPL) where you can learn a new craft on the first Saturday of every month. They also offer classes with computers and always have something going on.
Fort Casper [4001 Fort Caspar Rd] is the rebuilt fort named for Caspar Collins, a brave lieutenant that was killed trying to assist a small supply train being attacked by Indians. Along with Fort Casper is the National Historic Trails Center [1501 N Poplar St]. Once you have gotten your fill of Casper's historic tales there, head out to their patio to get the best view in Casper. The CC library also houses the Wyoming History Center for more local history. Casper also has a White Water Park [1007 W 1st St] on a stretch of The North Platte River and the fishing all along the river is great.
The most prominent architecture in Casper is a HUGE white obelisk found in downtown Casper. Today, it advertises Wells Fargo Bank, but at one time was the home to Wyoming National Bank. At its base is the bank's main building and drive through. The dome shaped offices stand out among the normal square buildings around it. Downtown is a veritable scavenger hunt for the photography enthusiast as there are several bronze statures, ghost signs and historic buildings to enjoy and photograph, all within walking distance of each other.
Eat & Drink
I have been known to eat at the Western Grill Restaurant [2333 E Yellowstone Hwy]. They have great food and daily specials. There is a train circling along the outer edge of the ceiling and the owner has a glass eye and a wooden leg. When you stop, ask someone to point out the case where he keeps them. Poor Boys Steakhouse [739 N Center St] is another place that has really good food. They are famous for their prime rib, fresh bread and bucket of salad.
Donells Candies [201 E 2nd St, Atrium Plaza] is in the Atrium Plaza and serves coffee, chocolate and ice cream made fresh every day. If you just want a good cup of coffee, head up the street to Java Jitters Espresso [211 S Montana Ave]. Both places have great coffee and great atmosphere. Metro Coffee Company [241 S David St] serves coffee and beverage from around the world and displays art from local artists, some of which is for sale.
The first thing on this list would have to be the "World Famous" Wonder Bar [256 S Center St]. They have good food and atmosphere as well as a bar upstairs called the Attic [256 S Center St] where many local events take place. Another well known local bar is The Beacon Club [4100 West Yellowstone Highway, Mills]. It is a great place to see good local talent as well as nationally famous groups playing smaller venues.
Prism Quilt [114 E 2nd St] offers classes and a space downstairs to use in making your very own quilt. The Natrona County Public Library [307 E 2nd St] has the craft classes, but if you need space to do something, they may let you use their Crawford room if there is nothing else going on there. The Senior Center [401 Wasatch Ave, Mills, WY 82604, United States] has help and space for those over 60 and Casper Recreation Center [1801 E 4th St] holds craft and art classes from Zentangle to pottery for a small fee.
The Casper Photography Club meets the first Monday evening of every month for regular meetings, but also meet to take photos during various times during the year. The Casper Needle Guild works with all crafts that involve needles from crochet to embroidery and everything in between.
See Something Special
In downtown Casper there are three oddities that are easy to find and fun to speculate on. If you go down the alley on 1st street that is halfway between Wolcott and Center Streets, you will find a spiral staircase that goes from ground to roof. It is the fire escape for that building. The second oddity is in another alley a few blocks away, but is visible from the north-east corner of the third floor of the parking garage. It is an old clock forever stuck at 4:20. If you go to the Natrona County Public Library [307 E 2nd St], go through the rear entrance from the parking lot. There is a small circular courtyard with a curved wall with a plaque in the center. If you stand in the center of the brick-paved area and speak to the plaque, you will hear your voice echo back. The only spot that this works in is the very center where a pie of bricks is planted exactly in the center.
Wherever you go, you will find items with the Bucking Bronc on it. This is a Wyoming trademark, officially registered nationally. The state Trademark Licensing office will allow Wyoming companies to use the logo if asked but had sued over it in the past. Anything with this logo on it would make a great souvenir of Casper and the Great state of Wyoming.