December 1, 2023

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9 Things to do in Denver & Colorado this weekend: July 15, 16, 17

Colorado hosts county fairs, rodeos, art festivals, the NHRA Mile-High Nationals and the Masked Singer.

COLORADO, USA — From festivals and fairs to expos and runs, there’s lots to do, see and explore in Denver and Colorado this July weekend. Celebrate the impending summer by experiencing the unique culture, food and geography that makes our state so special. Check out one of these fun events across Colorado.

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El Paso County Fair

CALHAN — The El Paso County Fair opens Saturday, July 16 and will continue through Saturday, July 23. The fair east of Colorado Springs has a carnival, bull riding, demolition derby, roping and racing events, plus family activities, live music and food. General admission tickets can be purchased at

Mesa County Fair

GRAND JUNCTION — Hard work meets fun at the Mesa County Fair. The annual tradition on the Western Slope runs through Saturday, July 16 and will showcase the best of the Grand Valley, form peaches to livestock. Gate admission is free to the fair which will have family friendly activities, carnival, shows, food and drink vendors and livestock auction. For show tickets and a complete 2022 fair schedule, head to

Park County Fair

FAIRPLAY — The Park County Fair is underway and the schedule is packed. The 2022 schedule includes 4-H shows, livestock shows, carnival, live music beer garden, kids’ activities, exhibits and Salida Circus. The fair ends Sunday, July 17. You can view a complete schedule at

Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo

COLORADO SPRINGS — A Colorado tradition is underway at the scenic Norris-Penrose Event Center in Colorado Springs. The Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo, now in its 81st year, runs through Saturday, July 16 professional rodeo’s top talent competing in bareback, saddle bronc, team roping, barrel racing, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, mutton bustin’, bull riding, and freestyle bullfighting.

Rodeo events are scheduled for Thursday and Friday nights as well as a Saturday matinee. The rodeo grounds also have a mechanical bull, pony rides, photo opportunities with longhorns, vendor booths, roadhouse saloon, dancing and food and drink options. Get your tickets ahead of time at

Cattlemen’s Days

GUNNISON — For 122 years, Gunnison Valley has celebrated the western way of life with Cattlemen’s Days. Selected by “American Cowboy” magazine as one of the best western events in the country, Cattlemen’s Days honors ranching culture with the “Granddaddy of Colorado Rodeos.” The western celebration, which includes a carnival, parade and 4-H events, ends Sunday, July 17. 

Global Dance Festival

DENVER — The 2022 Global Dance Festival returns to Empower Field at Mile High on Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16. Above & Beyond, Excision, Lane 8, Shiba San, and MK are among the 50 performers scheduled this year. The festival promises to be bigger and better than ever with dozens of artists on multiple stages outside the stadium, plus there’ll be art installations, a silent disco, a food truck marketplace and VIP village.

RELATED: 50 performers join Global Dance Festival in Denver

NHRA Mile-High Nationals

MORRISON — The biggest event of the year at Bandimere Speedway is here. The annual NHRA Mile-High Nationals has competitions in top fuel dragster, fuel funny cars, pro stock, pro stock motorcycle and more. The events on Friday and Saturday will have firework displays. Every ticket includes a “Pit Pass” so you can meet the drivers and see the cars up close. Get your tickets at The NHRA Mile-High Nationals run Friday, July 15 through Sunday, July 17.

Donor Dash

DENVER — The 23rd annual Donor Dash is Sunday, July 17 at Denver’s Washington Park. The dash is a 5K run/walk to honor the lives of organ and tissue donors, celebrate the lives of organ and tissue recipients and recognize those who continue to wait for a lifesaving transplant. Race day registration begins at 7 a.m. and the walk and runs are scheduled to start at 8 a.m. To register for the 2022 Donor Dash, head to

Blues & BBQ 

EDGEWATER — The 25th annual Blues & BBQ returns to Citizens Park in Edgewater on Saturday, July 16. Money raised from the event will go to Habitat for Humanity Metro Denver. There will be six bands including tributes to Aerosmith, INXS, Prince, The Allman Brother’s Band and Bruce Springsteen. On hand will be food vendors, local breweries and local artisans. Tickets are $10.

XTERRA USA Championship Festival

AVON — The 21st annual XTERRA USA Championship off-road triathlon will be held in conjunction with a new family-friendly weekend of events on Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16.  In addition to the main event, XTERRA will host sprint and relay races along with a variety of other endurance events for the family including kid’s races, yard games, vendor booths, food trucks, beer gardens and a free concert from Trout Steak Revival at the Avon Performance Pavilion in Harry A. Nottingham Park.

Festival in the Clouds 

ALMA — Now in its 24th year, Festival in the Clouds brings three days of music and art to Alma, the highest incorporated town in the USA. The festival — which runs from Friday, July 15 to Sunday, July 17 — includes 25 bands, 40 regional artists, food, beer garden, children’s activities, dancing and more. Admission to Festival in the Clouds is free, but the festival serves as a fundraiser for area community projects as well. A complete schedule is available at

Pearl Street Arts Fest

BOULDER — The 42nd annual Pearl Street Arts Fest will be held in downtown Boulder on Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17 with a special artist preview on Friday. A celebration of visual art, the festival includes many varieties of art from whimsical to modern sculptures to watercolors, oils and more. The festival begins at 10 a.m. each day, admission is free, and the City of Boulder parking garages will be free as well. Pearl Street Arts Fest will be held on Pearl Street Mall which features numerous restaurants, bars and shopping choices.

Silverthorne Fine Art Festival

SILVERTHORNE — The annual Silverthorne Fine Art Festival will be held from Friday, July 15 to Sunday, July 17 at the Silverthorne Recreation Center at the base of the Gore Range in Summit County. The festival will feature artisans in 13 categories from around the world. Admission to this weekend’s festival is free.

Lake Dillon Arts Festival  

DILLON — The 16th annual Lake Dillon Arts Festival will have 85 artists showing fine work in painting, jewelry, ceramics, sculpture, metal & woodwork, fiber and more this weekend. The Summit County art show runs Friday, July 15 through Sunday, July 17 at 104 Village Place in Dillon.

Downtown Aspen Art Festival  

ASPEN — The Downtown Aspen Art Festival returns to Aspen’s Paepcke Park for its 19th edition. The 2022 festival will take place Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The free outdoor art festival offers a wide-range of creations in sculpture, photography, glass, paintings, ceramics, one-of-a-kind jewelry and mixed media. Located directly on Main Street, Paepcke Park is located near downtown shops and restaurants.

A Taste of France

DENVER — Larimer Square is hosting A Taste of France from Thursday, July 14 to Sunday, July 17. The four-day celebration of all things French includes a mix of free and ticketed events, live music, food, art installations, a chalk art piece by Steve DeOrio, an Eiffel Tower replica and Projection Mapping by Deep Space Drive-In. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

91st Annual Bazaar

DENVER — Now in its 91st year, the Our Lady of Mount Carmel’s Annual Bazaar is one of Denver’s oldest Bazaars. The event will run Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 3549 Navajo Street. You can expect live music, Italian food, Italian vendors featuring salami, cheeses and imported items, Italian-style ceramics, Colorado peaches to order, games, a grand raffle, bingo and bazaar food including pizza, pizza fritta, sausage, sandwiches, pies with ice cream, root beer floats, wine, beer, meatball sandwiches, corn, fruit kabobs, hot dogs and more. A procession will follow Sunday’s 12 p.m. Mass. More information is available online at

The Masked Singer

DENVER — The first-ever national tour of “The Masked Singer” will make a stop at Denver’s Ellie Caulkins Opera House on Monday, July 18. Tour organizers say “audiences can expect to see their favorite characters brought to life onstage, as well as surprise celebrity guests, amazing new performances and a can’t-miss spectacular live show for audiences of all ages.” The event is hosted by Natasha Bedingfield. For ticket information, visit

Drums Along the Rockies

FORT COLLINS — Colorado’s premier marching music event moves to Canvas Stadium in Fort Collins on Saturday, July 16. Drums Along the Rockies, which steps off at 6:45 p.m., is annually one of the best and most popular events of its kind in the world with bands from Arizona, Utah, California, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming and Colorado scheduled to compete. An all-star line up of drum corps including the Blue Devils, Santa Clara Vanguard and Colorado’s Blue Knights are set to appear. Drums Along the Rockies tickets are sold online at CSU’s website.

Water Lantern Festival

THORTON — Experience the magic of floating lanterns as the soft glow reflects upon the water at Thornton’s Carpenter Park. The Water Lantern Festival combines  friends, family, great food and an array of twinkling lanterns on the waterfront. There will be local vendors, live music, lawn games and lantern-decorating stations. The festival starts at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, July 16. p.m. and lanterns will be launched between 8:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. Bring your lawn chairs for a relaxing evening at the park.


LONGMONT — Leftapalooza, Left Hand Brewing Foundation’s local tribute band competition and fundraiser, will be held Saturday, July 16 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Left Hand Brewing’s outdoor venue, The Garden. Leftapalooza is a family-friendly event and attendees 12 and under are free to attend. All event proceeds from Leftapalooza will benefit the Left Hand Brewing Foundation.

Keystone Wine and Jazz Festival

KEYSTONE — No matter if you’re a Chardonnay fan or you prefer a nice Riesling, you’ll find something you’ll like among the 300 varieties of wine at the Keystone Wine and Jazz Festival. There will be local food vendors, live music, and wines to sip and savor at River Run Village on Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17.

Castle Rock WineFest 

CASTLE ROCK — Over 180 varieties of Colorado wine from more than two dozen wineries will be available for swirlin’ and sippin’ at this outdoor wine event at Castle Rock’s Bison Park in the Meadows on Saturday, July 16. If wine isn’t your cup of tea, there will be a beer garden, food trucks and live music. This event is for adults only, so leave the kids and pets with a sitter. You can buy tickets to the 18th annual Castle Rock WineFest at

Central Park Beer Fest

DENVER — The Central Park Beer Fest is Saturday, July 16 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Denver’s Central Park. A portion of the proceeds will support Pints for Prostates. This festival features craft breweries, food trucks, live music featuring Chris Daniels and the Kings and more.


DENVER — This is the final weekend to visit the Phipps IMAX Theater at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS) before it closes until December. The theater will close Tuesday, July 19. The museum said the entire theater area will undergo a “major facelift” that includes a new lobby entrance with new finishings, a new laser projector and a new sound system.

RELATED: Denver museum’s IMAX theater to close for renovations

DMNS said the new audio and visual accessibility features will include a hearing induction loop, updated closed captioning system, enhanced programming, and 2D and 3D capabilities. The Phipps IMAX Theater first opened as the Phipps Auditorium in 1940. The theater was renovated as an IMAX theater in 1983.

Lavender Festival 

LITTLETON — Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield Farms will host its Lavender Festival on Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17. With more than 2,000 lavender plants, the family-friendly celebration will have products made by local growers and artisans, demonstrations, live music, kids’ activities, farm tours, vendors and more. Tickets for the celebration are sold at

Colorado Rapids vs. LA Galaxy

COMMERCE CITY — The Colorado Rapids are back at home this weekend. The Rapids host the Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday, July 16 at 7 p.m. at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Ticket are sold at

Colorado Rockies vs. Pittsburgh Pirates

DENVER — The Colorado Rockies have a four-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates this weekend. The Rockies and Pirates play Thursday, July 14 through Sunday, July 17 at Coors Field. Giveaways include a crossbody bag on Friday, Mandalorian beverage wrap on Saturday and water bottle on Sunday.

Red Rocks

DENVER — There is no better venue for live music in the country than Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The Red Rocks 2022 concert schedule (announced so far) is steadily growing and even features some concerts postponed from 2020.

  • Thursday, July 14 – Trampled by Turtles, Ruston Kelly
  • Friday, July 15 – The String Cheese Incident
  • Saturday, July 16 – The String Cheese Incident
  • Sunday, July 17 – The String Cheese Incident

RELATED: The String Cheese Incident reflects on 25 years together

RELATED: Who’s playing Red Rocks this summer?

Movies this weekend

Four movies in, Thor is still bringing the hammer down at the box office. “Thor: Love and Thunder” earned $144 million in its opening weekend, the best opening in the franchise.

The first film opened to $65.7 million in 2011, followed by $85.7 million for “The Dark World” in 2013 and $122.7 million for 2017’s “Ragnarok.” 

“Top Gun: Maverick” continues to soar, having passed $600 million this week, becoming the highest-grossing movie in Paramount history.

New movies this weekend

  • Marcel the Shell with Shoes On
  • Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank
  • Where the Crawdads Sing

Last weekend’s box office

  1. Thor: Love and Thunder — $144 million
  2. Minions: The Rise of Gru — $46 million
  3. Top Gun: Maverick — $15.5 million
  4. Elvis — $11.1 million 
  5. Jurassic World: Dominion — $8.5 million
  6. The Black Phone — $7.7 million
  7. Lightyear — $3 million
  8. Marcel the Shell with Shoes On — $0.3 million
  9. Mr. Malcolm’s List — $0.2 million 
  10. Dr. Strange and the Multiverse of Madness — $0.2 million

RELATED: ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ scores franchise-best debut

> Would you like to see your favorite Colorado festival, fair, expo, concert, drama, musical, ballet, run or event listed in 9Things? Send it to [email protected].

RELATED: When do we get ‘Stranger Things’ season 5? Here’s what we know.


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