Current Issue
summer festivals
Photo courtesy Colorado Dragon Boat Festival

10 Family Festivals Not to Miss This Summer

Looking for family-friendly summer fun? Add these festivals to the calendar.

1. Denver Chalk Art Festival

June 1-2 | Larimer Square, Denver

Festival Fun: Watch as Larimer Square is transformed into a giant outdoor art gallery, with hundreds of artists following the 16th century Renaissance tradition of creating art on the street.
Especially for Kids: There’s a Kids Corner where, for a small donation, kids get a bag of chalk to make their own pavement creations.
Insider Tip: Saturday is a good day to watch the artists at work, but if you want to see finished masterpieces, go on Sunday.

2. Colorado Renaissance Festival

Weekends, June 15-August 4 | Larkspur

Festival Fun: Travel back in time and immerse yourself in 16th century Renaissance life with food, activities, costumed merrymakers, artisans, performances, and contests authentic to King Henry VIII’s domain.
Especially for Kids: Children under age five always get in free; but on Children’s Weekend, July 6-7, kids age 12 and under get in free with paying adult. Special activities include a knighting ceremony and costume contest for kids.
Insider Tip: Visitors are encouraged to dress up in era-appropriate costumes, but bring a pouch for cash: all food, beverage, and some product vendors accept cash only.

3. Cherry Creek Arts Festival

July 5-7 | Cherry Creek North Shopping District, Denver

Festival Fun: See juried artwork on display and for sale, plus special performances.
Especially for Kids: Kids get their own area, the Creation Station, to explore interactive art activities such as button making and puppet creation.
Insider Tip: To avoid the heat or late-afternoon storms, visit the festival in the morning, then come back in the evening for live music.

4. Buffalo Bill Days

July 25-28 | Golden

Festival Fun: Enjoy live music, a parade, car shows, pancake breakfast, and Cody’s Wild West reenactments.
Especially for Kids: Take in the mutton busting competition and kids rides.
Insider Tip: Children ages five to seven (under 50 pounds) are allowed to participate in the mutton busting competition. Protective gear is provided.

5. Colorado Dragon Boat Festival

July 27-28 | Sloans Lake, Denver

Festival Fun: Experience music, dance, art, stories, and martial arts performances authentic to several regions of Asia. Cheer on competitors in the ramen eating contests and dragon boat races.
Especially for Kids: Stop by ImaginAsian and Dragonland for kid-oriented activities including painting dragon boat paddles, games, crafts, and children’s entertainment.
Insider Tip: Attend the first morning for a parade of dragon boat racing teams, eye dotting ceremony, and other opening festivities.

6. Colorado Scottish Festival and Rocky Mountain Highland Games

August 3-4 | Citizens Park, Edgewater

Festival Fun: Be part of Scottish culture with authentic athletics, music, dancing, art, food, goods, and a parade of Scottish clans.
Especially for Kids: Kids will enjoy seeing unique feats of strength and balance like the caber toss and other traditional Scottish Highland athletic events.
Insider Tip: This year marks the return of the festival to the Denver metro area.

7. Palisade Peach Festival

August 15-18 | Palisade

Festival Fun: Come hungry for every peach-incorporated dish imaginable, but be weary of flying peach chunks while watching the peach eating contest.
Especially for Kids: Sign kids up for peach eating contests. Enjoy a pancake breakfast before the big parade, followed by a free peach ice cream sundae.
Insider Tip: It can get quite hot so pack sunscreen and hats. Families are also allowed to bring in small coolers with drinks and snacks.

8. Colorado State Fair

August 23-September 2 | Pueblo

Festival Fun: See events featuring livestock, horses, and small animals, plus cooking demonstrations, concerts, dog shows, robotics competitions, and fine arts vendors.
Especially for Kids: Head to the small animal exhibit for a look at adorable rabbits and exotic birds.
Insider Tip: To save on parking, park in the city’s Main Street parking garage for free, then take the shuttle to the grounds for $2 per person, round-trip. Age seven and under ride free.

9. A Taste of Colorado

August 31-September | Civic Center Park, Denver

Festival Fun: Feast on Colorado’s best food and enjoy live entertainment, fine art, and crafts.
Especially for Kids: The KidZone is loaded with activities and entertainment for kids. There’s also a Baby Oasis for parents to nurse, change diapers, and relax in private.
Insider Tip: Parking is limited, so take advantage of public transportation or bike to the event.

10. People’s Fair

The People’s Fair is taking a hiatus for 2019, but festivities are expected to resume in summer 2020.

*This post has been updated for summer 2019.

Family Food

Newsletter Signup

Your weekly guide to Mile High family fun. Colorado Parent has a newsletter for every parent. Sign Up