We are officially saying goodbye to summer this week and hello to fall! With the change in seasons comes many opportunities for you to get out and have some family fun. Here is a list of local fall festivals…
- Oktoberfest – WHEN: Sept. 23-25 and Sept. 30–Oct. 2, 2016; WHERE: Ballpark Neighborhood (between 20th and 22nd Sts. on Larimer St.)
Oktoberfest lives on in The Mile High City! Modeled after Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, this family-friendly fest commemorates this world-famous and time-honored tradition of German heritage. Enjoy German attractions including music from national touring groups, performances by international dancers, children’s activities and heritage booths selling German goods, decor, an accordion concert and authentic drinks and cuisine.
- Fright Fest – WHEN: Weekends Throughout October; WHERE: Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park
Things get spooky around this time of year — especially during Fright Fest at Denver’s famed downtown theme park, Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park. This enormous fun zone transforms from theme park to “scream” park all month long during Fright Fest. Daytime is a trick-and-treat trail for little ones, and nighttime is all about haunted houses and ghoulish surprise
- Pumpkin Fest – WHEN: Oct. 7-9, 2016; WHERE: Denver Botanic Garden at Chatfield
At Pumpkin Fest, search for the perfect jack o’ lantern or pumpkin pie gourd for all your Halloween and fall festivities! Thousands of pumpkins will be ripe for the picking from the Denver Botanic Garden at Chatfield‘s pumpkin patch. The gardens will be filled with exciting children’s activities and vendors selling handcrafted gifts. Explore a menagerie of animals at the working farm, tour the historic ranch and enjoy the carnival rides
- Festival of Scarecrows – WHEN: Oct. 8, 2016; WHERE: Historic Olde Town Arvada
Head to Historic Olde Town Arvada for the Festival of Scarecrows. This autumn event features scarecrow contests, a pumpkin patch, a costume parade, community booths, hay wagon rides and a giant pumpkin contest.
- Boo at the Zoo – WHEN: Oct. 22-23 and Oct. 29-30, 2016; WHERE: Denver Zoo
Discover “spooktacular” Halloween fun at the Denver Zoo during Boo at the Zoo. Enjoy trick-or-treating stations and family-friendly entertainment while supporting Denver Zoo’s mission to provided exceptional care to our resident animals. Space is limited so buy tickets early!
- Denver Gorilla Run – WHEN: Oct. 22, 2016; WHERE: Westin Westminster
The annual Denver Gorilla Run features more than 3,000 people in gorilla suits running a 5K to benefit the mountain gorillas of Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The 13th Annual Gorilla Run will be taking place at The Westin Westminster. The run begins at 11 a.m. with the Silverback After Party immediately following. The cost of the race is $99.95, which includes a full gorilla suit (available in different sizes). All Gorilla Run participants receive entry into the after-party, and tickets are $10 (includes one beer and access to all food tents) for spectators or anyone who’d like to join the fun.
- Denver Zombie Crawl – WHEN: Oct. 22, 2016; WHERE: Skyline Park
Some 16,000-plus blood splattered crazies gather at Skyline Park and drag themselves down the16th Street Mall in this day-long event that can be as funny as it is horrifying. The Denver Zombie Crawl typically starts at 9 a.m. with the Organ Trail. This zombified version of a 5K event is a run, walk or crawl around downtown Denver. That’s followed by a parade of undead at 4 p.m. As you might imagine, during the procession, you’ll see zombie cheerleaders, zombie nurses, zombie brides, zombie Playboy bunnies, and even a complete zombie marching brass band.
- Trick or Treat Street – WHEN: Oct. 28-30 (9 a.m. – 6 p.m.); WHERE: Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus
For three days, the Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus will host costumed kids and adults for a spooktacular wonderland of fun! Families can march from one Treat House to the next and collect goodies, create Halloween crafts, play carnival games and much more. It’s the ultimate safe Halloween adventure, bursting with excitement for everyone. Event day pricing applies, see the museum’s website for details.
- Denver Film Festival – WHEN: 2016 dates TBD; WHERE: Various venues, including the Sie FilmCenter and UA Pavilions
Since 1978, the Denver Film Society has worked to promote the medium as both an art form and a civic forum, developing a program that includes year-round screenings, community outreach projects and renowned special events. The Denver Film Festival brings over 200 guest filmmakers and sells over 55,000 tickets to more than 250 films, from blockbusters and documentaries to shorts and indepedent films.
- Denver Arts Week – WHEN: Nov. 4-12, 2016; WHERE: Various galleries, museums and theaters throughout Denver
The Mile High City celebrates its vibrant creative community each year with Denver Arts Week. In 2016, this unique citywide happening returns with a lineup of innovative, inspiring and fun activities and events. Denver Arts Week takes place at seven neighborhood art districts, several museums, dozens of art galleries, and includes the wildly popular Night At The Museums, where several of the city’s greatest museums are free.
If you know of any other fall festivals/activities that we have not listed here, please share them in the comments section below.
Happy Fall Y’all!