Summer in Colorado usually means way too much to do and too little time to do it. With so many festivals, carnivals and impromptu food truck sightings to cover, we’ve decided to focus on three outdoor events hitting the Denver Metro area in June and July.
Beginning tomorrow, the southeast metro city of Parker will kick off what has been voted by several outlets as “the best festival on the front range” with a carnival preview plus a one-of-a-kind live performance from Trace Adkins.
Now in its 41st year, Parker Days is expected to draw over 250,000 attendees from June 7 through June 10 and have an economic impact for the Parker community of $4.2 million.
According to Parker Area Chamber of Commerce Office Manager Heather Lindsey there will be some new features this year as well.
“We have close to 300 exhibitors,” she said. “One of the new features we have this year is our wine and whiskey garden and that will open on Friday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. That is all local wine and whiskey. We will also have a slack line competition here as well as BMX trick riders that will be here through the weekend.
The proceeds benefit the Parker community, but Lindsey added that on Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. before the carnival fully opens to the public, a group of invitees will have the opportunity to do something they haven’t before.
“We have a special needs carnival that our carnival vendor is helping us to put on,” Lindsey said. “All children with any special needs were invited to come out and ride the carnival rides and participate in that. Most of these children are wheelchair bound or have other disabilities that keep them from participating in a normal carnival, so this will be a very special event.”
The festivities begin tomorrow with the carnival preview at 5 pm. For a full schedule or to purchase discounted ride tickets as well as tickets to the Parker Days Kick-Off Concert featuring Trace Adkins visit www.parkerdatsfestival.com.
Denver Pride Fest
With over 250 vendors and an expected attendance of 350,000 to 400,000 over two days, the Denver Pride Fest has become one of the largest in the nation. The festival has its official kick-off event on Saturday, June 16 with the Pride 5K. The Coors Light PrideFest Parade at Cheesman Park begins June 17 at 9 a.m. and the festival continues at Civic Center Park.
This year the parade will feature Grand Marshals David Mullins and Charlie Craig, the same-sex couple whose case against Masterpiece Cakeshop went to the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of the cake shop on Monday.
“The whole theme of the festival this year is ‘Say it Loud, Say it Proud’,” said Jon Pushkin of Pushkin PR. “It’s a way to honor their activism and all the work that they’ve done over the past five years to get to the point where [their case] was considered by the Supreme Court.”
Proceeds from the festivities benefit the GLBT Community Center of Colorado, better known as the Center.
Pushkin added that a lot of preparation is taken into account for a festival of this size, to ensure that everyone is comfortable and safe.
“The festival is a pretty sophisticated production and there are a lot of people involved,” he said. “The Center always works very closely with the Denver Police Department. They coordinate all the safety and traffic concerns.”
For a full Pride Week event schedule visit
LoHi Bazaar BBQ
Over 15,000 people are expected to attend the annual extravaganza that has become the largest outdoor shopping experience in Denver. Located in Denver’s LoHi neighborhood on 32nd St. between Tejon and Zuni streets, the LoHi Bazaar BBQ is the culmination of a partnership between three of Denver’s event producers.
Proceeds from the event will benefit the charity WATERisLIFE, which strives to end the world water crisis.
Festivities begin July 8 at 4 p.m. and will run through July 10 to 6 p.m. For vendor information and a full schedule visit www.denverbazaar.com.