History of the Chicken Show

Coordinated by the Wayne Area Chamber of Commerce, the Chicken Show is a fun event held annually on the second Saturday in July. Founded by the Wayne Regional Arts Council, the first show was held in 1981. The theme of “chickens” was chosen because of 1) the potential for art materials; 2) most people have knowledge and familiarity with chickens; and, 3) chickens can be considered with humor. The Wayne Chicken Show received the 1996 Nebraska Outstanding Tourism Award and was selected in 1999, along with four other community events in America, to be featured in the Library of Congress.

Wayne Chicken Show 2005 was the winner of two Nebraska State Pinnacle Awards given by the Nebraska Festival and Events, Inc. The Collectible 25th Anniversary Egg was awarded “Most Unique” merchandise item. The other award was for best “Festival Photo”.

Wayne Chicken Show was an official event for The Nebraska Sesquicentennial in 2017.


The Wayne Chicken Show and Henoween involve nearly 1,000 volunteers throughout the community who donate time, talents, and financial support, helping to make this festival fun and “cheep” for all who attend.

Past Themes

During the early years of the Wayne Chicken Show, the themes were based on chicken related puns so not all 44 years of the Chicken Show have necessarily had an official theme. Here is our running list of themes that we have accounts for.

  • 1989-Chickens in Space
  • 1990-Rock and Roll (Caveman and Wheel and Modern wheel)
  • 1992- Opera Chicken
  • 1994-Poultry in Motion
  • 1995-Chickens on the March
  • 1996-Poli-chicks in ’96
  • 1997- You Gotta Be Yolking
  • 1998-Under Coop-struction
  • 1999-Just Fowling Around
  • 2000-Y2Kluck
  • 2001-Higher Egg-ucation
  • 2002-22 Hen Salute
  • 2003-Wayne America’s World-Chickens Rule
  • 2004 Lewis and Cluck-Egg’sploring Wayne, Nebraska
  • 2005-Cheers to 25 Years
  • 2006-Our Coop Supports the Troops
  • 2007-Cluck-nology
  • 2008-Let the Cluckin’ Games Begin
  • 2009-O’Pioneer Chickens Roostin’ in Wayne 1884-2009
  • 2010-Wingin’ it for 30 Years
  • 2011-Chicken & a Movie
  • 2012-Nightmare on Egg Street
  • 2013-I Got FRIED at the Wayne Chicken Show
  • 2014-34 Years of a Cluck Dynasty
  • 2015-#chickenselfie2015
  • 2016-Cluck and Roll
  • 2017-Good Life…Great Place to Roost
  • 2018-Welcome to Fabulous Wayne America
  • 2019-Chickens Around the World
  • 2020-40 Years of Egg-cellence
  • 2021-Wayne America’s Chicken Vacation
  • 2022-Chicken’s Guide to the Galaxy: The Meaning of Life, the Universe, and Egg-vrything
  • 2023-Eggscaliber: Are you worthy to pluck the sword from the egg?
  • 2024-American Pluckers: Aged to Perf-EGG-Tion

If you have any information regarding the past themes or fun facts, please contact us at info@wayneamerica.org or at 402-375-2240