Major Events in Colorado Canceled in Response to Coronavirus

An increasing number of businesses, organizations and influential people are moving, postponing or downright canceling upcoming events in Colorado in an effort to mitigate the spread of coronavirus. The cessation of populous public events first became an order — and not any organization’s perogative — when Colorado Governor Jared Polis called for cancellation of large public gatherings of over 250 people on March 13. That same day, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock also banned events at city and county-owned facilities through April 12, and extended it to May 11 three days later.

All other gatherings that managed to steer clear of these mandates were officially brought to an end with the initiation of the state-wide stay-at-home order on March 25, which commands Coloradans to stay at home except for absolutely critical activities. On April 6, the City and County of Denver extended its stay-at-home order and ban on mass gatherings through April 30, and Polis extended the statewide stay-at-home order through April 26.

These measures dramatically alter the fate of community get-togethers. For the sake of clarity and cohesion, 303 Magazine compiled a list of major coronavirus-related changes to events in our community. We will update this list as the responses to the outbreak unfold.


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Photo by Glenn Ross

As of the afternoon of March 13, AEG venues shut down for the foreseeable future, including Bluebird Theater, Gothic Theatre, Ogden Theatre, Mission Ballroom and 1STBANK Center. The concert promoter will try to reschedule as many events as possible, and new dates will be rolled out in the future. If a concert is rescheduled, your ticket will still be valid for the new date, and you will be notified of the change. For concerts that will not get rescheduled, a refund will be issued to the credit card you used to purchase the ticket(s) within 30 business days after AEG lifts the suspension. This impacts the following major shows, among others:

3/13 – Keane at Mission Ballroom (canceled)
3/13 – Mayhem and Abbath at the Ogden (canceled)
3/13 – Adventure Club at the Mission Ballroom (canceled)
3/14 – Nora en Pure at the Ogden (postponed, new date TBA)
3/16 – Destroyer at the Bluebird (canceled)
3/17 – Elohim (postponed, new date TBA)
3/18 – Jamestown Revival at the Ogden (postponed, new date TBA)
3/19 – Third Eye Blind at Mission Ballroom (postponed to July 25)
3/22 – Olivia O’Brien at the Gothic (postponed, new date TBA)
3/24 – Pussy Riot at the Bluebird (postponed, new date TBA)
3/28 – Grace Potter at Mission Ballroom (postponed, new date TBA)
3/31 – Coin at the Ogden (postponed to June 9)

All events at City and County of Denver-owned venues, including Red Rocks Amphitheater and Visitor Center, have been suspended through May 11. This has been date extended from the previously-announced April 11. As such, all Red Rocks concerts slated from now up until that date are canceled, though they may reschedule. If you purchased tickets via AXS, a refund will automatically be issued to the credit card you used to purchase within 30 business days, should the concert not reschedule. Other changes will be announced at RedRocksOnline. The following major Red Rocks concerts are affected:

4/16 – Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa and Cypress Hill
4/20 – Ice Cube, Method Man & Redman with Action Bronson
4/24 – Galantis and 3LAU
4/25 – Lotus
4/27 – Five Finger Death Punch
5/1 – Trevor Hall and Citizen Cope (rescheduled for October 11)
5/2 – Sublime With Rome
5/5 and 5/6 – King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard
5/10 – Die Antwoord
5/11 – The 1975

Several Kroenke Sports & Entertainment venues — including the Pepsi Center, Paramount Theatre, 1ST BANK Center and DICK’S Sporting Goods Park — will not host events during the next 30 days. This impacts the following major concerts:

3/14 – Blake Shelton at the Pepsi Center (postponed, new date TBA)
3/24 – Celine Dion at the Pepsi Center (postponed, new date TBA)
3/26 and 3/28 – The Eagles at the Pepsi Center (postponed, new dates TBA)
4/9 – Pearl Jam at the Pepsi Center (postponed, new date TBA)

On April 1, Justin Bieber called off his entire 2020 tour, which was set to begin in Seattle on May 14 and sweep through Denver on June 13. This decision follows his earlier decision to downsize the show venue from the Mile High Stadium to the Pepsi Center.

In addition, The Colorado Symphony will postpone concerts and events through May 11. To view a list of the impacted concerts and ticket holder options, go here.

On April 2, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA) announced a new swath of event cancellations in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, bringing the nonprofit’s total tally of canceled events to well over five hundred. This follows its March 13 announcement to postpone all activities until April 12. View DCPA’s complete list of cancellations here.

The City Park Jazz canceled its entire 2020 season, which featured 10 free jazz concerts from June through August at Denver’s City Park.

Museums and Public Spaces

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A scene from inside Natura Obscura at the Museum of Outdoor Arts. Photo by Cori Anderson

In addition to Red Rocks Amphitheatre and Visitor Center, the Denver Coliseum, the Colorado Convention Center and Bellco Theatre, the Denver Performing Arts Complex, the McNichols Building and city libraries and recreation centers are all suspended through May 11. Other museums and public spaces are also temporarily closed.

Beginning March 12, the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art is temporarily closed indefinitely.

The NCAR Mesa Laboratory above Boulder is temporarily closing to the public until further notice, beginning March 12. This includes the cancellation of all exhibit tours and educational programs.

As of March 13, The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (MCA Denver) is closing until the planned exhibition opening of Nari Ward: We the People on April 24. It to reschedule the programs and events originally planned for March for a later date. Tickets purchased for events scheduled before April 24 will be refunded within the next few days.

Beginning March 13 at 5 p.m., the Denver Museum of Nature and Science will close until further notice. The museum encourages people to visit for virtual programming options.

Starting March 14 at 5 p.m., the Museum of Outdoor Arts (MOA), which houses the surrealist Natura Obscura exhibit, will close until at least April 5.

Starting March 16, all Denver recreation centers will be closed until further notice. All registered spring programs are canceled and people who previously registered will get full refunds. Denver Public schools will continue to serve dinner at select recreation centers from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.

The Denver Zoo temporarily closed to the public at 4 p.m. on March 16. Animal Care professionals will continue to provide vital nutritional, medical, emotional and physical care to the Zoo’s animal residents. The exact date that the Zoo will resume its normal operations is still under assessment.

The Sie FilmCenter is postponing all scheduled screenings from March 16 until April 30, at which point they will reassess the situation. Other Denver Film operations and event status updates will be posted on their website.

As of the evening of March 20, Rocky Mountain National Park is closed until further notice. On March 26, Colorado Parks & Wildlife (CPW) closed all playgrounds, campgrounds and camping facilities — including yurts and cabins — at Colorado’s state parks until further notice. In addition, the U.S. Forest Service closed campgrounds, restrooms, trailheads, cabin rentals and fire spots, picnic sites and trash cans at national parks in Colorado. Fishing, hunting and trail use within these national parks are temporarily discouraged.

Red Rocks Park — the area surrounding the amphitheater normally open to hiking, walking and outdoor recreation — closed to the public indefinitely as of 6:00 p.m. on Friday, April 10.

On April 11, Denver Parks & Recreation closed Civic Center Park until further notice.

Festivals, Parades and Celebrations

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Photo Courtesy of St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Facebook

Nederland’s 19th Annual Frozen Dead Guy Days, which would have run from March 13 – 15, is canceled.

The Ballpark District’s Irishfest Denver 2020, originally scheduled for March 13 – 15, is canceled.

Denver’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, initially slated for Saturday, March 14, is canceled.

The 46th annual Denver March Powwow, slated to occur March 20 – 22, is postponed for later in the year. Organizers are still deciding on new dates.

The Arise Music Festival, intended to occur from July 30 – August 4, is canceled. The threat of COVID-19 was one of several factors that resulted in the festival’s cancellation, including a denied application for a special event permit. On March 30, the festival announced its sponsorship of two new virtual live performance events.

Denver Film’s 2020 Women+Film Festival, scheduled for April 14 – 19, is postponed. The organization hopes to reschedule this event for later in the year. Updates on the festival status will be conveyed through the Denver Film website.

As of April 2, Estes Park’s inaugural Roots on the Ridge Festival set for May 16 is canceled. Tickets will be 100% refunded.

The Global Dance Festival at Mile High Stadium, an event scheduled for July 10 – 11, is now canceled due to COVID-19 as of April 2.

Denver Pop Culture Con, originally set for July 3-5, has been postponed until November 27-29, 2020, though these new dates are tentative. Its venue, the Colorado Convention Center, will be transformed into a temporary hospital by April 18 in order to take on the predicted influx of critical COVID-19 cases.

The Colorado Shakespeare Festival is postponing its upcoming season until summer 2021. Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. on October 26, 2020.

The annual six-day international television festival put on by SeriesFest, a Denver nonprofit, will now occur virtually from June 18 – 24. Additional virtual writers rooms, creator hangouts, network watch parties will occur in the months leading up to the festival. For information on how to participate, click here.

As of April 28, the 2020 Colorado Dragon Boat Festival is canceled. The event, once set to occur from July 25 – 26 at Sloans Lake Park in Denver, would have been celebrating its 19th straight year.

The fourth annual Slow Food Nations festival, scheduled for September 11 – 13, 2020 in Denver’s Larimer Square, is canceled.

Food + Booze Events

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Photo courtesy of Avanti on Facebook

As of March 17 at 8. a.m., all restaurant seating is barred for the next 30 days statewide, and for the next eight weeks in Denver. Delivery, take-out and drive-thru are all still available.

As of March 16, Avanti Food & Beverage will remain closed until further notice. This prolongs the collective eatery’s temporary weekend closure that began March 13.

Illegal Pete’s temporarily closed its restaurants, effective March 16.

Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar postponed its eighth annual High West Oyster Fest, set to occur on April 2. A new date will be announced in the near future.

The Colorado Brewers Guild’s 7th Annual Collaboration Fest, which was to take place on April 4 at the Fillmore Auditorium, is postponed. Organizers do not have a rescheduled date yet.

Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Day, originally slated for April 14, will be rescheduled for a later date. The ice cream chain has put on this giveaway since 1979.

Civic Events

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Colorado Convention Center. Photo by Scott Dressel Martin Courtesy of VISIT DENVER

The Denver Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation’s annual meeting, which includes the election of next year’s board members, is postponed. The meeting was planned for March 10, and the cooperation hasn’t set a new date yet.

The Colorado Education Association’s annual protest, Day of Action, which was planned for March 19, is canceled.

The largest annual hemp-industry conference, NoCo Hemp Expo, will now take place from August 6 – 8, 2020, instead of its original dates of March 26 – 28.

University of Colorado (CU) Boulder’s Conference of World Affairs, arranged for the week of April 6 – 10, will now occur online as of March 30. This follows the conference’s previous announcement of its cancellation.

The spring 9Health fairs across Colorado, initially set to occur in late March through early May, are adjourned until later in the year.

On April 20, Outdoor Retailer canceled Summer Market, originally scheduled for June 23 – 25 at the Colorado Convention Center. Outdoor Retailer is North America’s largest B2B tradeshow in the outdoor industry.

Sporting Events

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Photo courtesy of the Avalanche on Facebook.

On the evening of March 14, Governor Jared Polis issued an executive order that suspends all downhill ski resort operations in Colorado for one week. On March 19, he extended the suspension date to April 6. On March 17, Vail Resorts also announced it will close all of its North American ski areas for the 2019-2020 season. However, it will reevaluate for three resorts — Breckenridge Ski Resort, Heavenly Mountain Resort and Whistler Blackcomb — in late April/early May. Telluride Ski Resort, Loveland Ski Resort and Eldora are closing for the rest of the season. Copper Mountain has suspended its resort operations indefinitely.

The 42nd annual Bolder Boulder is postponed to Labor Day, Sept. 7. The 10K race normally occurs every Memorial Day.

The National Baseball League canceled all spring training games as of March 12. The start of the spring season, originally set for March 26, will be delayed by at least two weeks.

The NBA season — and thus all Denver Nuggets games — are suspended until further notice.

Major League Soccer (MLS) and the Colorado Rapids are suspending play for the 30 days, beginning March 12.

The National Lacrosse League (NLL) suspended the 2020 season until further notice. This impacts Colorado Mammoth games.

The National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic at Aspen Snowmass, once set for March 29 – April 2, is canceled.

The Colfax Marathon, originally set for May 16 – 17, is postponed until further notice. Organizers hope to put on the race sometime in 2020, but it could be called off altogether this year.