Favorite

Packing 'em in 

Six months of local events that draw the crowds

April

Body, Mind, Spirit Celebration

April 10-12

City Auditorium, 221 E. Kiowa St., celebrationfair.com

Formerly known as the Celebration Metaphysical Fair, this event features sessions on topics like karma and henna paintings and their spiritual connections, as well as readers, healers and booths.

Earth Day

April 18

Garden of the Gods Park, Rock Ledge Ranch, 1805 N. 30th St., gardenofgods.com

A free, eco-friendly event with nature walks, craft activities, Native American dancing performances, animal presentations, and more, meant to encourage individuals to care for the environment.

Rocky Mountain Women's Film Institute's Shorts Night

April 18

Stargazers Theater, 10 S. Parkside Drive, rmwfilmfest.org

You can support the Institute, which presents its popular weekend Women's Film Festival in November, by attending this Shorts Night in April.

Rope the Rockies Front Range Championships

April 18-19

Colorado State Fairgrounds, Pueblo, ropetherockies.com

A touring rodeo that'll usher in the season of roping activities, with prizes including fancy buckles and gold saddles.

May

Pikes Peak Herb Fest

May 2

AspenPointe Café, 1675 Garden of the Gods Road, peakherbfest.com

In addition to herb plants for sale and free chai tea, expect new features such as fresh eggs and milk for sale, and authors discussing healthy, earth-friendly living, and lots of vendors.

Hummingbird Experience

May 9

Starsmore Visitor and Nature Center, 2120 N. Cheyenne Cañon Road, cheyennecanon.org

This year will focus more than ever on the natural beauty of Cheyenne Cañon, with a guided bird walk, a migration game, demonstration tents, a hummingbird discovery presentation and nature photography how-to sessions.

Craft Beer Week Events

May 11-17

Various sites, csindy.com

Pints and Plates will run May 12-14, with local restaurants and breweries creating exclusive beer and food pairings. More events to come; see csindy.com for updates.

Wild Wild West Festival

May 15-17

Various sites in downtown Pueblo, pueblochamber.org

A Western-themed fest for people of all ages, with live entertainment, carnival rides, vendors, and more.

MeadowGrass Music Festival

May 22-24

La Foret Conference & Retreat Center, 6145 Shoup Road, meadowgrassmusicfestival.org

In addition to music ranging from bluegrass to folk to Americana — headlined by much-lauded Canadian band Blue Rodeo — MeadowGrass also offers food, beer, workshops and kids' activities.

Territory Days

May 23-25

Old Colorado City, shopoldcoloradocity.com

Territory Days attracts crowds with pony rides, a play area, a petting zoo, a mechanical bull, a cowboy church service, Wild West gunfight re-enactments, blacksmithing and much more, including beer gardens and booths.

June

Manitou Springs Colorado Wine Festival

June 6

Memorial Park, 502 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs, manitousprings.org

Have a little cheese with your wine at the annual tasting event, with samples from more than 25 Colorado wineries, live music and vendors.

Colorado College Summer Music Festival

June 7-27

Various venues on campus, 14 E. Cache la Poudre St., coloradocollege.edu

Enjoy live performances by young talent on "violin, viola, cello, bass, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone, timpani/percussion, piano..."

Springs Spree

June 13-14

Memorial Park, 1605 E. Pikes Peak Ave., springsspree.org

Springs Spree offers the works, everything from a beer garden to a carnival to health-and-wellness vendors and a chance to explore National Guard vehicles.

Colorado Renaissance Festival & Artisans Marketplace

June 13-Aug. 2, weekends only

650 W. Perry Park Ave., Larkspur, coloradorenaissance.com

In a beautiful woodland setting, RenFest provides the chance to explore a rich historical time period in unique style — with over-the-top performances, food, jousters, jugglers, minstrels, games and people dressed in costumes as far as the eye can see.

Heuberger Subaru Starlight Spectacular

June 20

Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center, 1805 N. 30th St., goo.gl/FuY0E2

Supporting the Trails and Open Space Coalition, this event draws nighttime bikers who get to eat a hot breakfast and win prizes, post-ride.

Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Fan Fest

June 26

Tejon Street, between Colorado Avenue and Bijou Street, ppihc.com

Support your favorite car-racing competitors and enjoy motorcycle exhibitions, beer, vendor booths, and the firefighters' chili cook-off to raise money for charity.

The Year of Georgia O'Keeffe

June 27-Sept. 13

Colorado Springs Fine ArtsCenter, 30 W. Dale St.,csfineartscenter.org

Traveling exhibit Eloquent Objects: Georgia O'Keeffe and Still Life Art in New Mexico, with more than 40 paintings by O'Keeffe and her contemporaries, is just the beginning.

Donkey Derby Days

June 27-28

Downtown Cripple Creek, Bennett Avenue, visitcripplecreek.com

Cool off at higher altitude and find heritage competitions, games, donkey races, street vendors, dog shows and other forms of entertainment for, yes, the whole family.

Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

June 28

Pikes Peak, ppihc.com

"The Race to the Clouds" — 94 years old now — sends daredevil drivers in an assortment of wheeled vehicles up the side of our 14,000-foot mountain.

July

Pikes Peak Art & Music Festival

July 3-5

America the Beautiful Park, 126 Cimino Drive, pikespeakartfest.com

Come enjoy a variety of creative forms — 100+ artists (local, regional and national), live music, hands-on activities and "arts happenings."

Cripple Creek's 4th of July Celebration

July 4

City Park, 128 E. Bennett Ave., visitcripplecreek.com

Considered one of the best Independence Day events in the state, Cripple Creek's celebration offers live entertainment, vendors, a beer garden and a ton of family-friendly activities.

Green Box Arts Festival

July 4-12

Various venues in and about Green Mountain Falls, greenboxarts.org

Everyone's invited to "nurture the creative process and explore new artistic directions," including dance, photography, astronomy, silversmithing, cooking, and more.

Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo

July 8-11

Norris-Penrose Event Center, 1045 Lower Gold Camp Road, pikespeakorbust.org

Your spot for gold panning, pony rides, bull rides and a climbing wall, among other forms of entertainment. Also, be sure to (carefully) snap a selfie with the longhorns.

PrideFest

July 11-12

America the Beautiful Park, 126 Cimino Drive,coloradospringspridefest.com

A big birthday for PrideFest, now 25. Despite the fact that the Pride Center is now closed, this festival — under new management — is still going, loud and proud.

Rocky Mountain State Games

July 17-19, 24-26

Various sites, rockymountainstategames.org

Everything from badminton to arm-wrestling to cricket to rock climbing to shooting to Taekwondo to Ultimate Frisbee, and on and on. Play hard, or be a spectator and cheer on those who are "in the arena."

Olympic Downtown Celebration & State Games Opening Ceremonies

July 18

Downtown Colorado Springs, rockymountainstategames.org

Help kick off the Games (and celebrate Colorado Springs' Olympic presence) with food, live entertainment, a festival and a gathering of athletes.

El Paso County Fair

July 18-25

County Fairgrounds, 366 10th St., Calhan, elpasocountyfair.com

Get your 4H shows, arts and crafts, a petting zoo, and night events such as auto races, a truck and tractor pull, rodeo and Demolition Derby.

Blues Under the Bridge

July 25

218 W. Colorado Ave. (under the Colorado Avenue bridge), bluesunderthebridge.com

Artists in downtown's leading blues event include Carolyn Wonderland, Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens and Mulebone. Pre-fest shows will take place around town July 22-24.

Fiddles, Vittles, and Vino

July 26

Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site, 3105 Gateway Road, fiddlesvittlesandvino.com

Bands for this year's fundraising event include Hot Club of Cowtown and the Stanleytones. Edibles will come from such local standouts as Coquette's Bistro, Springs Orleans and Adams Mountain Café.

August

Bronc Day Festival

Aug. 1

Downtown Green Mountain Falls, broncdayco.org

It doesn't get much more family-friendly than this, with a pancake breakfast, arts and crafts booths, a parade, a rubber duckie race, a Bronc Day princess, boat races, and more.

Pikes Peak Cycling Hill Climb

Aug. 9

Pikes Peak, coscycling.com

Race to the Summit — or take it easier and do a "Gran Fondo" fun ride. Spectators can come for the relay race and festival atmosphere but are not allowed on the cycling course.

Salute to American Veterans Rally & POW/MIA Recognition Ride

Aug. 14-16

Downtown Cripple Creek, visitcripplecreek.com

Remember those who have served our country with a veteran's parade, recognition ride, remembrance ceremony, guest speakers, veterans poker run, aircraft flyovers and the largest procession of motorcycles Colorado has to offer.

Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon

Aug. 15 (ascent), Aug. 16 (marathon)

Barr Trail, Manitou Springs, pikespeakmarathon.org

Come to downtown Manitou and help celebrate the 60th year of sending only the most hardcore runners on an intense journey up and down Pikes Peak.

Pikes Peak Region's Memorial Wall Dedication

Aug. 16

Mount Pisgah Cemetery, Teller County Road 1, visitcripplecreek.com

A day to honor area military members who have given their lives in action since 9/11. Highlights include a performance by the Pikes Peak Highlanders Pipe & Drum Corps, a wreath-laying ceremony, and a reading of the names.

Colorado State Fair

Aug. 28-Sept. 7

State Fairgrounds, Pueblo, coloradostatefair.com

The fair returns with everything people have come to know and love, like music, horse shows, a carnival, and rides for family fun.

Indy Music Awards & Festival

End of August (TBD)

Ivywild School, csindy.com

What other music festival lets people vote on who gets to play? Enjoy Independent readers' picks of the best of the Pikes Peak region's music scene.

September

Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift Off

Sept. 4-7

Memorial Park,1605 E. Pikes Peak Ave., coloradospringslabordayliftoff.com

Having swooped in to save the tradition of balloons ascending on Labor Day weekend, Scott Appelman ups the ante with skydivers, bands, a kids play area, cheerleading squads, and more.

Commonwheel Artists Labor Day Fine Arts & Crafts Festival

Sept. 5-7

Memorial Park, 502 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs, commonwheel.com/festival

Shop for art, eat, listen to music, meet artists and win prizes. Hands-on art projects, drawing, face-painting and bubble-blowing are just a few of the activities to keep the little ones entertained.

Labor Day Vintage Baseball Game

Sept. 7

Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site, 3105 Gateway Road, rockledgeranch.com

A flashback to the past with a vintage-style baseball game, plus soda, hot dogs, popcorn and ice cream.

Holly Berry House Folk Art Festival

Sept. 18-20

Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site, 3105 Gateway Road, rockledgeranch.com

Help fund the ranch's restoration by picking up some "folk art," such as furniture, clothing and antiques, while tapping your toe to live music. There will also be a quilt exhibit, silent auction and history interpretation.

What If ... Festival of Innovation and Imagination

Sept. 19

Various locations, whatif-festival.org

A family-friendly event featuring music, food and 100 interactive experiences, including hands-on learning, new technologies, experiments, DIY demonstrations, and more.

2 Mile High Club's Aspen Tours

Sept. 19-20, 26-27

Cripple Creek District Museum, 510 Bennett Drive, visitcripplecreek.com

Turn over a new leaf with a free aspen tour. (Donations are encouraged.) There will be places to view and photograph the seasonal colors and a brief discussion of local history.

Loaf 'N Jug Chile & Frijoles Festival

Sept. 25-27

Various locations in downtown Pueblo, pueblochilefestivalinfo.com

Find spice in the Chili & Salsa Showdown and a jalapeño-eating contest, and catch arts and crafts, cooking competitions, lots of live entertainment and rubber duckies racing down Pueblo's lovely Arkansas Riverwalk. The best part: the unmistakable smoky scent of roasting chilies.

Intertribal Powwow

Sept. 26

Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site, 3105 Gateway Road, rockledgeranch.com

Come to Rock Ledge to honor indigenous peoples as they perform traditional dances. The powwow will feature arts and crafts, food vendors, live music and educational presentations.

  • Six months of local events that draw the crowds

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