While I thoroughly enjoy the long, hot days of summer, I figure fall is a fair compromise between baking in the heat and freezing in the blizzards of winter. And, of course, there are very few things I love more than pumpkins – pumpkin eating, drinking, baking, decorating, picking – you get the picture.
So with the colors slowly changing and the temperatures dropping, here are just a few of those fall activities that you won’t want to miss.
Miners Blast (formerly known as Harvest Fest): Oct. 5, Erie Community Park
With over 1,000 pumpkins, hay rides, a car show, and several local craft vendors, this family event has something for mom, dad, and kids. There’s also a “Hoses and Guns” softball tournament with the local fire department taking on the local police department. (Who wouldn’t want to see that??)
Admission is free (including hayrides and one free pumpkin per child)
Berthoud Oktoberfest: Oct. 5, Fickel Park
If you missed the Oktoberfest celebrations around the state in September, don’t worry – Berthoud has you covered. Their celebration includes German fare, local brews (of course), arts and crafts, a scarecrow parade and contest, and activities for kids.
Admission is free
Applefest: Oct. 5-6
If apples are more your style, Cedaredge’s annual Applefest is hands-down your best bet. The festival includes over 150 vendors, a classic car and antique tractor show, and, of course, a wide variety of apples grown locally.
Admission is free
Lakewood Cider Days: Oct. 5-6, Lakewood Heritage Center
Lakewood Cider Days offers a bit of a small town vibe close to the city – including tractor pulls, hay and barrel train rides, a pie eating contest, and a wide variety of nostalgic vendors, entertainment, and food.
Admission: $7 Adults, $4 Children
Breckenridge Craft Spirits Festival : Oct. 4-6, Cedaredge Town Park
While you’re in Breckenridge checking out the changing colors, you might want to stop in at the Craft Spirits Festival to sample some of the sprits from small-batch distillers as well as local cuisine. Beer festivals might be all the rage in Colorado, but this is the first festival that celebrates what our distilleries have to offer.
Tickets: $25 in advance, $30 at the door
Telluride Horror Show: Oct. 11-13, Sheridan Opera House and Nugget Theater
Some people love fall simply because of Halloween – I may not be one of those people, but I can appreciate a good horror film every once in a while. The Telluride Horror Show doesn’t just have a few films, it boasts 20 feature length films and 30+ short films, all in the spirit of scaring yourself silly.
Tickets: $84 (3-day pass)
Pumpkin Festival: Oct. 11-13, Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield
The Botanic Garden’s Pumpkin Festival is about all things pumpkin (obviously.) Pick a pumpkin from their 10-acre patch, watch a pumpkin carving demonstration, and participate in pumpkin bowling. It’s perfect fall fun for any family.
Admission: $7 Adult/$6 Member Adult; $5 Child (ages 3-12)/$4 Member Child (ages 3-12)
Historic Ghost Walk: Oct. 11-12, 18-19, 25-26, Pioneer Cemetery
Like ghosts? Tour Glenwood’s oldest cemetery for a little bit of history and some fascinating scary stories. The tour includes performances highlighting the cemetery’s storied past and the pioneers that might not have had the most pleasant end.
Tickets: $15 per person
Giant Pumpkin Festival: Oct. 19, Old Town Plaza
Giant pumpkins abound at this Colorado Springs festival. Awards are given to the largest pumpkins, squash, and gourds, and attendees can also enjoy live music and face painting for the kids. Be sure to stroll through town and check out the scarecrows local shops have created for Scarecrow Days (Oct. 1-31).
Admission is free
Do you know of any Colorado fall festivals or events that you’d like to add to the list? Leave a comment!