From bluegrass and classical music to peaches and wine, Colorado’s line-up of summer festivals showcases the state’s best music, art, food, beer, and wine.
Aspen Food & Wine Classic
For one weekend in June, culinary talents converge in Aspen for the mining-turned-ski-town’s renowned Food & Wine Classic. The festival features three days of cook-offs, famous chefs, tastings, ‘round-the-world wines, and unique food-and-beverage combos like “Green Wines & Ham.”
The mid-August Breckenridge International Festival of Arts is a ten-day fête that showcases an eclectic mix of arts and entertainment inspired by Colorado’s alpine culture. Held in the quaint, historic mining town of Breckenridge, BIFA Breck includes a series of indie films, live music, and dance performances suitable for all ages.
From June to August, Colorado’s most glamorous ski town hosts the Bravo! Vail Music Festival, where musicians and orchestras from around the world perform in a variety of venues, including a covered outdoor stage. The New York Philharmonic and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra are just a few of the headliners that will be performing this summer.
Colorado Brewers’ Festival
On a weekend in late June, the bike- and beer-friendly town of Fort Collins hosts the Colorado Brewers’ Festival. This event features more than 90 beers from 40 Colorado breweries, great music and food, and free entry.
Colorado Shakespeare Festival
From mid-June to mid-August, Boulder’s Colorado Shakespeare Festival celebrates the enduring works of the playwright in a beautiful outdoor amphitheater on the University of Colorado campus. For its 59th season this summer, the professional theater company is presenting some of Shakespeare’s best-known works, including Hamlet and Julius Caesar.
Hot Air Balloon Rodeo
For one weekend in mid-July, the relaxed cowboy town of Steamboat Springs holds the colorful Hot Air Balloon Rodeo. The weekend features a series of “rodeo” contests like dipping into Bald Eagle Lake, the Saturday evening Balloon Glow, and a celebratory Art in the Park event with free entertainment and more than 150 vendors.
Palisade Peach Fest
Every year in mid-August, the charming town of Palisade showcases its famous fruit at the Palisade Peach Fest. Locals and tourists alike gather to celebrate the community’s agricultural roots and participate in a 5k run and parade, as well as family-friendly festivities like tug-of-war and peach-eating contests.
For three nonstop days and nights in late July, the small town of Lyons hosts RockyGrass, one of the country’s best-known bluegrass festivals. The internationally renowned lineup, which this year includes the Earls of Leicester and the Infamous Stringdusters, draws ‘Festivarians’ from around the nation to the grassy grounds, where they can also camp beneath Colorado’s brilliant stars.