The Ultimate 2017 Festival Guide

Winter’s great and all, but we know know you’ve been jonesing to shake your hula thing in the full sun. To that end, we offer EO’s annual festival guide, your rundown of the best happenings across Colorado and beyond. Circle these events on your calendar—everything from music fests to river fêtes to beer celebrations to gatherings that’ll engage your root chakra. Plus, look for the EO Road Show, which will be stopping at select festivals with swag, high fives and magazines.


Estes Park Duck Race

May 6  Estes Park, CO

Yes, it’s duck season. Since 1989, this springtime fun fest has raised more than $2 million to local charities.

Head for the Hills Pickin’
on the Poudre

May 13  Bellvue, CO

Back again to kick off the season, Head for the Hills   lands at the legendary Mish. Don’t Miss: Mishawaka Open Jam, every Thursday at 8 p.m. All styles and instruments are welcome and entry is free.

Colorado Bike Expo

May 19-20  Denver, CO

From a crit to demos, this baby’s the biggest bike event in the state.

The Golden Games

May 19-21  Golden, CO

The Golden Games are a paddler’s paradise, celebrating outdoor adventure sports in an action-packed weekend. Don’t Miss: The two new SUP events this year: Paddle-o-War and SUP-n-Joust.

Grand Junction Off-Road

May 19-21  Grand Junction, CO

Hone your skills on technical singletrack with races at 15, 30 and 40 miles, then head downtown to enjoy live music and some of Colorado’s best wine and beer. Don’t Miss: You’re in wine country… need we say more?

Colorado Whitewater Training Camp

May 19-21  Arkansas River, CO

Dive into paddling season with skills clinics for novices and experienced kayakers of all ages. Don’t Miss: Live music Saturday night (TBA).

Vintage Market Days

May 19-21  Estes Park, CO

This three-day market is the place to find funky and maybe classic vintage swag.

Upslope Get Down

May 20  Boulder, CO

Dance to live music, eat great food, crush your friends in yard games, all while sampling beers on tap. Don’t Miss: The Elevation Outdoors team scavenger hunt for a chance to win prizes!

Elevation Beer Co. Five-year Anniversary Party

May 20  Poncha Springs, CO

This party includes special tappings, food and a free performance by Trout Steak Revival.

The 2017 La Sportiva Trail Running Series: Boneyard Boogie

May 20  Eagle, CO

Arguably one of the most scenic trail races in Colorado. You can sign up for the 5K, 10K or the fun run. Don’t Miss: The rest of the series during the summer: La Sportiva Summer Solstice in Beaver Creek (6/24), Vail Hill Climb (7/8), Camp Hale Half Marathon (7/22), Berry Picker 5K in Vail (8/5), 10K @10,000 Feet in Vail (8/26) and MeadowGold in Minturn (9/16).


May 26-28  black forest, CO

Camp in the heart of the Black Forest and enjoy a relaxing weekend with live music and local artists. Don’t Miss: Morning yoga classes.

CKS Paddlefest

May 26-29  Buena Vista, CO

A jumpstart to Buena Vista’s famous river season, you’ll see some epic whitewater athletes compete from around the country. Don’t Miss: EO is hosting a River Park clean up with CKS Main and Eddyline Brewery on the morning of Monday, May 29.

Festival of the Brewpubs

May 28  Arapahoe Basin, CO

Beer, live music and spring skiing—that’s what Colorado does best. Don’t Miss: Skiing at the only resort still open.


Mike the Headless Chicken

June 2-3  Fruita, CO

Come out and celebrate the chicken that lived for 18 months without a head. Don’t Miss: The wing eating contest…seems fitting.

Campout for the Cause

June 2-4  buena vista, CO

With a commitment to community and sustainability, the annual benefit Campout features music, yoga and lifestyle workshops. Don’t Miss: The new venue along the Arkansas River.

Animas River Days

June 3  Durango, CO

Whitewater slalom, kayak rodeos, boatercross and SUP races—all this paddling fun is packed into one Saturday afternoon. Don’t Miss: The after-party in downtown Durango.

Run the Rockies 10K/Half Marathon

June 3  Frisco, CO

Get ready to set a new PR with a fast course along the Ten Mile Range. Don’t Miss: Beer from Backcountry Brewery at the post-race party.


June 3  Meeker, CO

Break out of the city and enjoy live music and art in a friendly small-town atmosphere. Don’t Miss: The beer and wine from Palisade Brewery and Blanco Cellars.

Burning Can Festival at Lyons Outdoor Games

June 3  Lyons, CO

This little town puts on one of the best multi-sport throwdowns in the country—and it revolves around beer, with more than 50 breweries and over 200 canned craft brews. Don’t Miss: Action on the river park.

Eagle Outside Festival / CO XC & Enduro State Championship

June 3-4  Eagle, Co

A great opportunity to demo bikes on Eagle’s all-time single track. Don’t Miss: Alison Gannett’s Rippin Chix Women’s Clinics.

Photo by Logan Robertson

GoPro Mountain Games

June 8-11  Vail, CO

An adrenaline-filled weekend for the whole family, the GoPro Mountain Games are the country’s largest celebration of adventure sports. Don’t Miss: The Ultimate Mountain Challenge.

Palisade Bluegrass and Roots

June 9-11  Palisade, CO

Enjoy three days of nonstop Americana, bluegrass and roots alongside th Colorado River.

Pagosa Folk ‘n Bluegrass

June 9-11  Pagosa Springs, CO

Settle in for sounds from  The O’Connor Band, Loudon Wainwright III and others.

Car Show at Pagosa

June 9-10  Pagosa Springs, CO

Check out classic and souped-up cars and enjoy music and beer.

Dolores River Festival

June 10  Dolores, CO

This fête celebrates the life of one of Colorado’s most beautiful rivers. Don’t Miss: The Mountainfilm tour will be stopping here.

Denver Berkeley Art & Music Festival

June 10-11  Denver, CO

Browse the art and take in the tunes at Denver’s Berkeley Park.


June 15-18  Boulder, CO

World famous yoga teachers including Rod Stryker and Janet Stone lead classes and workshops in the heart of downtown Boulder. Don’t Miss: Find balance with the slacklining yoga workshop.

Telluride Bluegrass

June 15-18  Telluride, CO

The big daddy never disappoints. Don’t Miss: The annual Telluride Troubador Contest.

Sonic Bloom

June 15-18  Hummingbird Ranch, Spanish Peaks Country, CO

An eclectic mix of electronic music in one of the most beautiful venues in the Rockies. Don’t Miss: Early bird camping starts Wednesday night so you can wake up Thursday refreshed and ready to boogie.


June 15-18  Salida, CO

Hit up the 69th anniversary of the country’s oldest whitewater festival. Don’t Miss: Beer from Eddyline brewing.

Colorado BBQ Challenge

June 16-17  Frisco, CO

Bring an empty stomach to this event with 70-plus BBQ-ers, seven bands, pig races, kids’ activities and the third annual Fire Fighter Cook Off.

Vail Craft Beer Classic 

June 16-18  Vail, CO

More than just a beer fest, the Vail Craft Beer Classic pairs beer with adventure. Don’t Miss: Work off those 300-plus beers with yoga and hiking.

Rails and Ales

June 17  Alamosa, CO

Brewfest by train? Yes Please.  Don’t Miss: The brats.

Estes Park Marathon and Half

June 18  Estes Park, Co

Race past breathtaking views of the  Continental Divide on a fast course with a six-mile downhill start. Don’t Miss: The 5K fun run the day before.

Telluride Yoga Festival 

July 20-23  Telluride, Co

Now in its tenth year, this unique festival  includes biking, slacklining and SUP yoga events. Don’t Miss: Yoga Slackliners Extravaganza.


June 22-25  Rancho del Rio, CO

Jam band fans will delight with three days of the Magic Beans and more in the heart of Vail Valley. Don’t Miss: A morning hike to the nearby Radium hot springs.

Photo Courtesy Gunnison River Festival

Gunnison River Festival

June 22-25  Gunnison, CO

Not only for the Gunny— the convocation celebrates spring runoff, recreation and ecology of all our clean waterways. Don’t Miss: The riverbank beer garden.

Crested Butte Bike Week

June 22-25  Crested Butte, CO

The world’s oldest mountain bike festival!  Don’t Miss: The gnarly downhill race.

Salida Art Walk

June 22-25  Salida, CO

The 25th year of celebrating creativity in the Upper Arkansas River Valley. Don’t Miss: The street performers.

Royal Gorge Whitewater Festival

June 23-24  Canon City, CO

Join in two glorious days of boats, bands and beer along the Arkansas. Don’t Miss: The scenic train through the gorge.

Rapidgrass bluegrass festival

June 23-25  Idaho Springs, CO

With a low-key vibe but no downgrade in the quality of bands performing—including Rapidgrass, Head for the Hills and Trout Steak Revival—true fans won’t want to miss this one.

Jazz Aspen Snowmass

June 23-July 1 & September 1-3

Now in its 27th year, Jazz Aspen Snowmass has grown from a three-day event to a set of multi-day festivals that feature epic line-ups of musicians. Don’t Miss: Any of it. Both weekends are exceptional.

Boulder Beer Company 38th Anniversary 

June 24  Boulder, CO

Ring in the big 3-8 with Colorado’s oldest craft brewery. Don’t Miss: This longtime brewery’s new look.

Attack of the Big Beers & Grilled Cheese Fest

June 23-25  Copper, CO

Craft beer, grilled cheese and a film festival—that’s a perfect weekend.

Blues From the Top

June 24-25  Winter Park, CO

Winter Park’s nonprofit blues extravaganza brings some heat to the high country. Don’t Miss: Performances by some of the youngest blues artists in the country.

Keystone’s Bacon and Bourbon Festival 

June 24-25  Keystone, CO

What pairs better than bacon and bourbon? Don’t Miss: The bacon bloody Marys.


Ten Sleep Climbing Festival

July 1  Ten Sleep, WY

Climbing and craft beer in the Big Horn Mountains? Count us in. Don’t Miss: The crazy costumes.

Colorado Springs Art &
Music Festival

July 1-2  Colorado Springs, CO

There’s a wide range of art and live music at this festival that takes place in the heart of downtown Colorado Springs. Don’t Miss: The creative station for the kids.

Frisco’s Fabulous 4th of July

July 4  Frisco, CO

Let freedom ring in this all-American mountain town hoedown.

Ridgway Concert Series

July 6  Ridgway, CO

Eight bands play for free for four Thursdays over the month of July. Don’t Miss: More shows on July 13, 20 and 27.

High Mountain Hay Fever Bluegrass Festival 

July 6-9  Westcliffe, CO

Bluegrass, and summer nights in the mountains of Colorado go together like peanut butter and bananas. Don’t Miss: Uncle Shuffelo and His Haint Hallow Hootnanny.

Copper Mountain Music Fest

July 7-9, 2017  Copper Mountain, CO

The views alone at this outdoor venue make this funky music festival worth attending. Plus, the activities day pass costs just $49! Don’t Miss: Title sponsor Elevation Outdoors will host a team scavenger hunt for a chance to win prizes.

Crested Butte Wildflower Festival

July 7-16  Crested BUtte, CO

It’s one of the most colorful and beautiful festivals in Colorado. Don’t Miss: Guided hikes and walks.

Salida Brewers Rendezvous

July 21  Salida, CO

Seventy-five Colorado breweries will pour over 300 beer samplings in downtown Salida.

Tequila & Tacos

July 8  Winter Park, CO

Two things that make life better. Plus live music.

Ride Festival

July 8-9  Telluride, CO

The new kid on the Telluride block features a lineup of heavy hitters. Don’t Miss: Beck, baby.

Steamboat Hot Air Balloon Rodeo

July 8-9  Steamboat, CO

Hold onto your hats because this hot air balloon festival meets rodeo is not your average outdoor event. Don’t Miss: The colorful Balloon Glow.

Photo by Todd Powell

Frisco Triathalon

July 15  Frisco, CO

This mountain-town-style tri includes

SUP, mountain biking and trail running.

Lohi Music Festival

July 15  Denver, CO

Great music and vibes in downtown Denver. Don’t Miss: The after party at Cervantes.

Salida riverside fine arts & music

July 15-16  Salida, CO

Browse the best offerings in many mediums and stay for the riverside tunes.

Targhee Fest

July 14-16  Alta, WY

Hit the road for the winner of the best festival award in the EO Best of The Rockies reader poll. Don’t Miss: The Marcus King Band (see page 63).

Bob Cook Memorial Mt. Evans
Hill Climb

July 15  Evergreen, CO

Do you have the lungs to race up a fourteener?

Keystone Wine and Jazz

July 15-16  Keystone, CO

Joel Rodney Simieon and a jammy red are just two pairings to enjoy on this weekend.

Festival in the Clouds

July 15-16  Alma, CO

Twenty-five bands, 40 regional artists and a beer garden. Don’t Miss: Work by 40 regional artists.

Salida Brewers Rendezvous

July 21  Salida, CO

Seventy-five Colorado breweries will pour over 300 beer samplings in downtown Salida.

Never Summer 6 and 24 Hour Adventure Race

July 22-23  Granby Ranch, CO

Compete in epic singletrack mountain biking, on and off trail trekking, and pack-rafting.

Colorado FUNC fest

July 22  Montrose, CO

That’s short for fun on the Uncompahgre at the Montrose Water Sports Park.

UpaDowna: ROAR in the City

July 22  Colorado Springs, CO

ROAR stands for Really Outrageous Adventure Race.

Winter Park Rendezvous Mountain Bike Capital USA Weekend

July 28-30  Winter Park, CO

If you ride a bike, be here. Don’t Miss: The epic downhill terrain in Winter Park.


July 28-30  Lyons, CO

Reserve a camping spot (early) at this big small-town fest that gets people grooving alongside (and in) the St. Vrain River. Don’t Miss: The Infamous Stringdusters.

Oyster Ridge Music Festival

July 28-30  Kemmerer, WY

Ever heard of a Bandscramble? Witness this ultimate band jam here, this year. Don’t Miss: The Wyoming State Flatpick / Fingerpick Contest.

Breck 100

July 29  Breckenridge, CO

Test your legs and your lungs on this off-road course that climbs nearly 14,000 feet over 100 miles and crosses the Continental Divide three times. Don’t Miss: Entering as a two- or three-person relay team.


Pickin’ in the Park

August 3  Paonia, CO

The four-show series, with two bands each night, is free to the public and features top notch music from around the country. Don’t Miss: More shows on August 10, 17, 24—and hard cider from Delicious Orchards.

Under the Stars Film Series at the A-Lodge

August 3, Boulder, CO

A free night of outdoor adventure films projected onto a 24-foot inflatable screen on the lawn of a beautiful lodge located by Fourmile Creek? We’ll be there..

Middle Park Fair and Rodeo

August 4-13  Kremmling, CO

After all, rodeos are festivals too!


August 4-5  Crestone, CO

Mountain music festival meets carnival meets charming small town good time. Don’t Miss: Carnival games.


August 4-6, 2017  Loveland, CO

Relax, rejuvenate and dance the night away in the mountains of northern Colorado. Don’t Miss: Finding your inner warrior at the Yoga Sanctuary.

Telluride Jazz Festival

August 4-6, 2017  Telluride, CO

Camping passes for this iconic music festival are only $59. Don’t Miss: Mavis Staples.

Crested Butte Arts Festival

August 4-6  Crested Butte, CO

Art in all its forms (thin cuisine, too) is on display in this iconic mountain town. Don’t Miss: Art Alley, where kids (and adults) can make art of their own.


August 5  Longmont, CO

Beer festivities and the Mile High Tribute Band Competition raise funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Left Hand Brewing Foundation.

Keystone Bluegrass and
Beer Festival

August 5-6  Keystone, CO

Appalachia meets Colorado at this funky festival. Add in 40+ craft beer vendors and you have one hell of a weekend. Don’t Miss: Headliners the Peter Rowan Band.

Steamboat Movement Fest

August 10-13  Steamboat, CO

Festival attendees at this fest are encouraged to consciously connect through music, movement and the great outdoors. Don’t Miss: The panel of presenters that includes Shannon Paige and Laura Rust.

Velorama Festival

August 11-13  Denver, CO

Meet our favorite new festival when it comes to high-flying lineups. It’s time to rock out in Denver’s hip RiNo Art District and maybe stop by Stem Ciders (see page 53) for three days of bands, brews and bikes. Don’t Miss: Wilco, The New Pornographers, La Santa Cecilia, Death Cab for Cutie.

SolShine Music Festival

August 12  Winter Park, CO

Soak in live music at the newly remodeled outdoor stage in the heart of Winter Park.

Aspen Backcountry Marathon and Half Marathon

August 12  Aspen, CO
Ready your legs and lungs for the most challenging marathon you’ll ever run. Don’t Miss: Spectacular views of the Elk Mountains.

Denver Sloan’s Lake Fine Arts & Music Festival

August 12-13  Denver, CO

Perfect location, meet unbeatable live music and art.


August 18-20  crested butte, CO

Find all things bikes at the new summer edition of the ever-popular event. Don’t Miss: Demos with your favorite brands.

Rocky Mountain Folks Festival

August 18-20  Lyons, CO

Cap off your summer with one last outdoor music festival in everybody’s favorite quirky Colorado small town. Don’t Miss: Local hero Gregory Alan Isakov.


August 25-27  Nederland, CO

This kid-friendly festival in Nederland highlights a variety of musical genres in an intimate space. Don’t Miss: The rockabilly sounds of The Gasoline Lollipops.

Trinidaddio Blues Fest

August 26  Trinidad, CO

From the Fabulous Thunderbirds to Nathan and the Zydeco Cha Chas, this fest is the real deal.

Buses at the Brewery

August 26  Colorado Springs, CO

Hey Millenials, there’s #vanlife and craft beer here.

10th Annual Albuquerque Hopfest

August 26  Albuquerque, NM

The Land of Enchantment proves it has some hops at this beer festival with over 70 breweries and seven bands on three stages.


Four Corners Folk Festival

September 1-3  Pagosa Springs, CO

The Wood Brothers, Los Lobos, The Drunken Hearts—they’re all coming to  year’s Four Corners Folk Fest. Don’t Miss: Early bird ticket pricing.

Salida Winefest

September 2  Salida, CO

Colorado’s grapes take center stage in the heart of the mountains.

Photo Courtesy Telluride Blues and Brews

Telluride Blues and Brews

September 15-17  Telluride, CO

Take in changing autumn colors along with world-class music (think Bonnie Raitt and Taj Mahal) and exceptional beer at the Telluride Blues and Brews festival. Don’t Miss: Late night concerts throughout Telluride.

Colorfest Weekend

September 15-17  Pagosa Springs, CO

The Mountain Harvest Festival is small town Americana at its best. Don’t Miss: The colorful hot air balloon mass ascension in downtown Pagosa Springs.

17th Annual Mountain
Harvest Festival

September 21-24   Paonia, CO

This autumn weekend celebration is jam-packed with a variety of fun events. Don’t Miss: The farms and winery tours.

Salomon Golden Leaf Half Marathon

September 23  Aspen, CO

Incredible autumn views between Snowmass and Aspen make this 13.1-mile half-marathon a tad easier. Don’t Miss: Free lunch post-race as long as you have your bib.

Longmont Oktoberfest

September 22-23  Longmont, CO

Longmont shuts down for a massive family-friendly carnival and beer fest featuring Left Hand Brewing.

Parker Fine Arts & Music Festival

September 23-24  Parker, CO

Enjoy live music and browse fine artisan wares in O’Brien Park.

14er Fest

September 29-October 1  Buena Vista, CO

Celebrate a love of trails, no matter if you 4×4, mountain bike, hike, fish or run.


Great American Beer Festival

October 5-7  Denver, CO

It’s Disneyland for craft beer drinkers. Don’t Miss: The food pairing pavilion where 21 chefs pair up with 21 craft breweries.

Nitro Fest

November 11  Longmont, CO

Forty-plus breweries from across the U.S. pour rare, never-before-seen nitro styles alongside circus acts.


By Lily Krass and Tyra Sutak 

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