Feel Inspired With These 6 Colorado Arts Festivals

People walking around in front of booths and mountains

It’s time to immerse yourself in the beauty of Colorado, and we’re not talking about the mountains. This summer, celebrate and support local and national artists with arts festivals and events in and outside Denver. Discover eclectic paintings, curated homes, handcrafted ceramics and artistic craftsmanship. Add a splash of color to your summer with these six Colorado arts festivals.

Colorado Black Arts Festival

Crowd and people on stage performing during one of 7 Colorado arts festivals
Photo Courtesy of Colorado Black Arts Festival

Where: 1700 City Park Esplanade, Denver

When: July 7 – July 8, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.; July 9, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

The Lowdown: Celebrate Denver’s 37th annual Colorado Black Arts Festival on July 7. The festival which began in 1986, aims to “develop and promote Black arts and culture in Colorado.” For three days, experience four performance stages featuring gospel, jazz, hip-hop, R&B and traditional Nigerian African Dance and Drum.

Purchase fabrics and jewelry from the marketplace, indulge in South African delights from the foodcourt, drop the little ones off at the Opalanga D. Pugh Children’s Pavilion for Art and Learning or discover watercolor, woodcarvings, published work and more from Literary and Visuals Art Row. Come and support the community, the event is free for everyone.

Arts and Crafts Festival in Grand Lake

People walking in front of tents, flags at one of 7 Colorado arts festivals
Photo Courtesy of Westernriv.com

Where: 1025 Grand Ave, Grand Lake

When: July 8 – 9 and August 12 – 13, 2023

The Lowdown: Venture north this summer to Grand Lake for their Arts and Crafts Festival. Both July and August, experience Grand Lake’s open-air market with over 50 booths featuring handmade, quality art. If you want to sell and show off your craftsmanship, there is still time to apply as one of this year’s 40 artisans and vendors.

Telluride Art and Architecture

House in front of mountains at one of 7 Colorado arts festivals
Photo Courtesy of Telluride Art and Architecture Weekend on Facebook

Where: 220 W Colorado Ave, Telluride

When: July 10 – 16, 2023

The Lowdown: Escape the city structures of Denver and immerse yourself in the architectural talent of Telluride. Take a road trip south the second week of July for this year’s Telluride Art and Architecture. The week-long event celebrates the various forms of art the town has to showcase—celebrating landscape designers, winemakers, musicians, interior designers, artists, architects and more. The week includes a garden tour—an opportunity to explore the private and beautiful outdoor spaces and a home tour. Tickets for this one-of-a-kind event range from $150-$600.

Cheesman Park Art Fest

People in art gallery at one of 7 Colorado arts festivals
Photo Courtesy of Dashevents.com

Where: 1599 East 8th Avenue, Denver

When: July 22 – 23, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The Lowdown: Ranked as one of the Top 100 Shows of the Decade by Sunshine Arts Magazine in 2020, Cheesman Park Art Fest returns this summer and is free to attend. Encounter a lineup of 150 artists from all over the U.S. and purchase your favorite artwork and handcrafted pieces from the event. Listen to Denver jazz and folk musicians while you explore the park. If you’re hungry, dozens of food trucks will be on-site featuring tasty, local delights.

Colorado Dragon Boat Festival

Dragon in water, colorful poster
Photo Courtesy of Colorado Dragon Boat Festival

Where: 1700 N Sheridan Blvd, Denver

When: July 22 – 23, 2023

The Lowdown: Did you know Denver is home to the largest dragon boat festival in the nation? Come out to Sloan’s Lake Park and join in the festivities at the 23rd annual Colorado Dragon Boat Festival. Watch traditional and contemporary performances, including musicians and martial artists.

Become a part of the boat races or root for your favorite team and experience the vibrant dragon boats. Live art demos are offered in the art area— draw your own manga and interact with local artists. Explore the marketplace for artwork, jewelry and other gifts from Asia. Need a bite to eat? Visit the food vendors for a taste of Denver’s Asian cuisine.

Crested Butte Art Festival

Crested Butte Arts festival
Crested Butte Arts Festival. Photo provided by Travel Crested Butte Facebook

Where: 601 Elk Ave, Crested Butte

When: August 4 – 6, 2023

The Lowdown: Experience Colorado’s eclectic arts scene and cultural celebration at this year’s Crested Butte Arts Festival. Support local and nationwide artists with a weekend packed full of events. Buy unique artwork from an online auction, enjoy a picnic with the family, watch live performances, join the community in an outdoor film screening and let the kids get creative with hands-on art activities at the Children’s Art Alley. Over 50 artists will be exhibited this year, including woodwork, mixed media, painting, fibers, glass, jewelry and ceramics. With so much to see at this year’s event, it’ll be worth the trip!

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