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9Things to do in Colorado this Labor Day weekend

Taste of Colorado is back in Denver, 3 college football games kick off the season and the first Oktoberfests of the season are here.
Credit: A Taste of Colorado

COLORADO, USA — Happy Labor Day weekend! Although it may be the unofficial end to summer, there's still time to head outdoors and experience all that Colorado has to offer during the season.

Taste of Colorado highlights a packed weekend of festivals which includes music, food, arts, crafts, balloon, wine and beer celebrations.

There are early signs of autumn, however. College football is back with three games this weekend and the first Oktoberfest steins of the year will be raised in Keystone and Beaver Creek.

Check out one of these awesome events happening across the Centennial State this Labor Day weekend. Remember to share your weekend photos with the "Near Me" feature on the 9NEWS app.

Submit an event to 9Things To Do.

Credit: A Taste of Colorado

Taste of Colorado

DENVER — Colorado's signature Labor Day weekend festival is back at Civic Center Park in downtown Denver. The 39th annual Taste of Colorado will be held Saturday, Sept. 3 to Monday, Sept. 5. This year's event features five stages where attendees can listen to music from more than 60 artists including tribute bands, country musicians, jazz, cultural lineups and Denver bands. An Arts & Crafts Marketplace will have 50 local artisan booths and over 30 food trucks and restaurant vendors.

RELATED: A guide to the 2022 Taste of Colorado in Denver

Credit: Colorado State Fair

Colorado State Fair

PUEBLO — The largest summer event in Colorado continues this weekend in southern Colorado. The Colorado State Fair offers a carnival, 4-H exhibits, agricultural competitions, tractor pulls, live music performances, rodeos, bake offs and amazing food options. The Colorado State Fair runs through Monday, Sept. 5 with concerts from The Band Perry and Stone Temple Pilots, plus monster truck shows and a demolition derby. Check out the full fair schedule at ColoradoStateFair.com.

Credit: Windsor Harvest Festival

Windsor Harvest Festival

WINDSOR — Windsor's largest family-friendly event is back for a 100th year this Labor Day weekend. This year's Windsor Harvest Festival theme is "Build for the Future While Honoring the Past." The festival runs from Saturday, Sept. 3 to Monday, Sept. 5 with live music, a street dance, BBQ, car show, pancake breakfast, horse-drawn carriage rides, outdoor games, beer garden, movie screening in the park, and firework show. Balloon launches are planned for Saturday and Sunday at 6:30 a.m. at Eastman Park. A parade steps off at 9 a.m. Monday. Visit WindsorHarvestFestival.com to see the complete schedule.

Credit: Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift Off

Labor Day Lift Off

COLORADO SPRINGS — A Southern Colorado tradition returns this weekend with the Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift Off. Running Saturday, Sept. 3 through Monday, Sept. 5, the free event begins each morning with an ascension of over 70 balloons accompanied by breakfast and drinks from local vendors. Throughout each day there will be skydiving demonstrations, wakeboarding exhibitions, paddle boarding and live entertainment. Evening balloon glows are set for Saturday and Sunday at 7:30 p.m. The Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift Off takes place at Memorial Park.

Credit: Kevin Berne
Hadestown

Hadestown

DENVER — "Hadestown," the winner of eight Tony Awards in 2019 including Best Musical, has just opened at Denver's Buell Theatre. "Hadestown" intertwines the tales of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice with that of King Hades and his wife Persephone on hell-raising journey to the underworld and back. With an exceptional cast of actors, dancers and singers, the musical is a haunting but hopeful theatrical experience that grabs you and never lets go. "Hadestown" plays the Buell Theatre through Sunday, Sept. 11.

Credit: Denver Chalk Art Festival

Denver Chalk Art Festival  

DENVER — The annual Denver Chalk Art Festival has moved to Denver's Golden Triangle neighborhood this weekend. The street painting festival, which runs Saturday, Sept. 3 through Monday, Sept. 5, will have 150 artists creating awe-inspiring works of chalk art. The festival is two blocks south of Civic Center Park (and Taste of Colorado) near 12th and Bannock and the Denver Art Museum.

Credit: Seven Peaks Music Festival

Seven Peaks Music Festival

VILLA GROVE — Seven Peaks Music Festival returns for a third edition this weekend with a star-studded country music lineup. Dierks Bentley and Morgan Wallen headline the festival with guests Boy Named Banjo, Ashley Cooke, Jordan Davis, Jackson Dean, Travis Denning, Hardy,  Kendell Marvel, Ashley McBryde, Old Crow Medicine Show, Caitlyn Smith, Rapidgrass, Alana Springsteen and Lainey Wilson. Seven Peaks Music Festival runs Friday, Sept. 2 to Sunday, Sept. 4 in Villa Grove, located about 45 miles south of Buena Vista.

Labor Day Weekend in Creede

CREEDE — Creede's Labor Day Weekend celebration is packed with events including a mountain run, outdoor movie, music, theater and more. The 36th annual Creede Mountain Run takes place Saturday, Sept. 3. Participants will enjoy the breathtaking San Juan Mountains in 50K, 22 mile, 12 mile and two-mile runs. Registration is available online. To see the complete Labor Day Weekend schedule, visit Creede.com.

Credit: KUSA

TCU vs. Colorado

BOULDER — The University of Colorado football teams opens the 2022 season on Friday, Sept. 2. The CU Buffaloes host TCU in a nationally-televised game on ESPN with an 8 p.m. kickoff. Fans are encouraged to wear black to the game. A new sound system will also make its debut at Folsom Field on Friday. Season and single game tickets remain available at CUBuffs.com.

RELATED: CU's football stadium will sound different in opener vs. TCU

Northern Iowa vs. Air Force

COLORADO SPRINGS — Air Force Academy football opens its season on Saturday, Sept. 3 against Northern Iowa in the first meeting between the schools. Northern Iowa head coach Mark Farley enters his 22nd season with the Panthers as the most winningest coach in program history. Air Force Falcons head coach Troy Calhoun is 15-0 against teams from the Football Championship Subdivision. The Falcons and Panthers kick off at 11 a.m. Saturday at Falcon Stadium.

Houston Baptist vs. Northern Colorado

GREELEY — University of Northern Colorado head coach Ed McCaffrey leads the Bears onto the field at Nottingham Field on Saturday, Sept. 3 at 2 p.m. against Houston Baptist. Last year, linebacker David Hoage recorded three sacks against Houston Baptist, the most since 2017. Fans should arrive early for the Pepsi Fan Fest, Bears, Brews and Bites and tailgate with fellow Bear fans.

Credit: Water World

Water World’s final weekend

FEDERAL HEIGHTS — This is the final weekend of 2022 to visit one of America's largest family water parks. Water World's final three days of operation this season are Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Water World features more than fifty attractions, from kids rides to huge thrill rides. Most food and drinks can be brought into the park making it perfect for picnics and parking is free. Avoid the lines and get your tickets online.

Elitch Gardens water park

DENVER — The Labor Day holiday is the final day to visit the water park at Elitch Gardens. Although the water park closes for the season after Labor Day, the main amusement park area will remain open through Sunday, Oct. 30.

Credit: Cirque du Soleil

Ovo

LOVELAND — Cirque du Soleil has brought a touring circus to Colorado for the first time since 2019. "Ovo" is in Colorado Springs before heading to Denver next weekend. The show "Ovo" — meaning "egg" in Portuguese — is comprised of 100 people from 25 countries, including 52 artists, with high-level acrobatic acts. "Ovo" is at Broadmoor World Arena through Sunday, Sept. 4. Tickets are sold at AXS.com.

RELATED: Cirque du Soleil returns to Colorado

Credit: Jurassic World: The Exhibition

Jurassic World: The Exhibition

DENVER — This is the final weekend to see "Jurassic World: The Exhibition" at the Stockyards Event Center of the National Western Center. An immersive 20,000-square-foot experience based on the blockbuster movie franchise, "Jurassic World: The Exhibition" allows visitors to walk through the world-famous Jurassic gates, encounter life-sized dinosaurs and explore richly themed environments. Tickets are on sale at JurassicWorldExhibition.com. The show will be in Denver through Monday, Sept. 5.

Credit: Taryn Parker; Broncos 7K

Broncos Fit 7K

DENVER — The 10th annual Broncos Fit 7K returns to Empower Field at Mile High on Sunday, Sept. 4. All runners will receive an exclusive Broncos shirt, finisher's medal and the experience of racing across the field and crossing the 50-yard line. Proceeds will benefit Denver Broncos Charities. Register at DenverBroncos.com.

Labor Day Half Marathon, 10K and 5K

PARKER — Celebrate the holiday weekend with a half marathon, 10K or 5K. There's a distance for everyone at Monday's races at Parker's Salisbury Equestrian Park. Runners of all abilities are welcome. Each participant gets a running shirt, finisher's medal, chip timing and race photos. Race registration is available at ColoradoRunnerEvents.com.

Credit: DCPA
David Byrne and Mala Gaonkar

Theater of the Mind

DENVER — "Theater of the Mind" is a new theatrical experience you’ll see, feel, taste and hear, co-created by Academy, Grammy, and Tony Award-winning artist David Byrne and writer Mala Gaonkar. Witness the wonders of your mind for yourself as you follow The Guide through a spectacular, 15,000-square-foot installation in a group of 16 audience members. "Theater of the Mind" takes place at the York Street Yards at 39th and Steele through Dec. 18.

RELATED: David Byrne brings his creative talents to Denver for DCPA's latest show

Credit: Saint Rafka Maronite Catholic Church

Lebanese and Middle Eastern Festival

LAKEWOOD — Saint Rafka Maronite Catholic Church is hosting its annual Lebanese and Middle Eastern Festival on Saturday, Sept. 3, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 2301 Wadsworth Blvd in Lakewood. Experience this unique cultural and culinary festival featuring authentic Lebanese and Middle Eastern cuisine and entertainment with fun for everyone.

Credit: Keystone Festivals

Keystone Oktoberfest

KEYSTONE — Oktoberfest season officially arrives with Saturday's 9th annual Oktoberfest at Keystone’s River Run Village. Attendees will be raising their steins, dancing to oompah bands and savoring delicious German fare. The festival, which runs from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., will have live music, food and seasonal beer. The festival will also have a kids’ area with crafts and dance performances from the Denver German Traditional Dance Group. If you buy a commemorative 2022 stein, you'll get three beer tokens. Stein tickets are available online.

Beaver Creek Oktoberfest

BEAVER CREEK — Beaver Creek’s long-running Oktoberfest is a family-friendly celebration of traditional live music, food and drink the heart of a Bavarian-inspired village. Festivities planned on Friday, Saturday and Sunday include stein-hoisting competitions, bratwurst-eating competition, kids’ zone, Oktoberfest shuffle, best-dressed contest and live music from Trachtenkapelle, The Helmet Fricker Band, Philadelphia Freedom and more. A complete schedule can be found at BeaverCreek.com.

Castle Rock Brew Fest Under the Stars

CASTLE ROCK — The Castle Rock Brew Fest Under the Stars is Sunday, Sept. 4 at Philip S. Miller Park. The fest will offer craft beer from more than 20 breweries, food from eight food trucks and four bands. Each ticket comes with admission, unlimited food, eight-ounce craft beer pours and live entertainment until 9 p.m. Tickets are available online.

Fountain Fall Festival & Parade

FOUNTAIN — The 52nd annual Fountain Fall Festival and Parade arrives Monday, Sept. 5 in Fountain. The Labor Day Parade begins at 10 a.m. Monday and will run along Main Street and Ohio Avenue. The Fall Festival opens at 10:30 a.m. at John Metcalf Park.

Credit: Jazz Aspen Snowmass

JAS Labor Day Experience

SNOWMASS — The Jazz Aspen Snowmass Labor Day Experience is a popular three-day music festival on the grounds outside the Snowmass Village Recreation Center. This year's 31st annual lineup includes Leon Bridges, Chris Stapleton, Stevie Nicks, Little Big Town, Zach Bryan, St. Paul and the Broken Bones and more. The festival runs Friday, Sept. 2 to Sunday, Sept. 4. Tickets are sold at JazzAspenSnowmass.org.

Credit: Pixar Putt

Pixar Putt 

DENVER — Pop-up, open air mini-golf experience Pixar Putt has arrived in Denver. The experience is made up of 18 holes inspired by the stories, characters and icons from some of Disney and Pixar's most beloved films including "Toy Story," "The Incredibles," "Monsters, Inc.," "Finding Nemo," "Coco," "A Bug's Life," "Wall-E," and "Inside Out." Pixar Putt is staged at McGregor Square’s Rally Hotel beginning Saturday, Sept. 3 and running through Nov. 27.

Credit: 9NEWS

Nan Desu Kan

AURORA — The three-day Japanese culture convention Nan Desu Kan is back this weekend at Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center in Aurora. Since 1997, the event has showcased traditional Japanese arts, anime, cosplay, gaming, shopping, music, dance, voice actors, competitions, charity and more. Nan Desu Kan runs Friday, Sept. 2 through Sunday, Sept. 4. Check out the full lineup at NDKDenver.org.

Credit: NPS Photo/J. Koch

Bent’s Old Fort

OTERO COUNTY — The public is invited to join the inhabitants of Bent’s Old Fort on Friday, Sept. 2 from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 3 from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. to experience the sights and sounds of Bent, St. Vrain, & Company in 1847. There is no additional fee to participate in this special event. Regular park entrance fees apply. Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site is located on Colorado Highway 194, eight miles east of La Junta.

Credit: jerd nakata - stock.adobe.com

Estes Park Labor Day Arts & Crafts Show

ESTES PARK — The Estes Park Arts and Crafts Show brings over 100 artisans to downtown Estes Park every Labor Day weekend. This year's show runs from Saturday, Sept. 3 to Monday, Sept. 5 at Bond Park. The show, when combined with the shops and restaurants of downtown, make Estes Park a great weekend destination on the edge of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Commonwheel Art Festival

MANITOU SPRINGS — Manitou Springs' Memorial Park is the site of this weekend’s Commonwheel Artists Co-op 48th annual Labor Day Art Festival. The festival will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 3 to Monday, Sept. 5. There will be dozens of art vendors, live music, food options, beer garden and kids’ activities. Admission is free.

Credit: digidreamgrafix - stock.adobe.com

Windsor Cruise In Car Show

WINDSOR — One of the largest car shows in northern Colorado will be held Sunday, Sept. 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Windsor Cruise In Car Show at Eastman Park will have categories in 20s and older, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and newer, trucks, and diamond-in-the-rough vehicles. There is no entry fee for car enthusiasts interested in stopping by, viewing the cars, meeting and mingling with the owners of the vehicles.

Credit: Lukas Gojda - stock.adobe.com

Four Corners Motorcycle Rally

DURANGO — Durango, which serves as a gateway to the world famous Million Dollar Highway, is the home of this weekend's three-day Four Corners Motorcycle Rally. There will be races, stunt shows, live music, bike shows and more. Visit FourCornersMotorcycleRally.com to see a complete event schedule.

Credit: Rotary Club of Vail

Vail Duck Race

VAIL — The Vail Rotary Club is hosting its annual rubber duck race at 3 p.m. this Sunday, Sept. 4. The club will send about 15,000 ducks down Gore Creek. The race will begin at the Covered Bridge and end at the Vail Rotary International Bridge. The owner of the first duck that enters the chute will win $5,000. This event serves as a fundraiser for the Vail Rotary which supports many Vail-area organizations. Ducks are available for adoption online.

Credit: Steve Lovegrove - stock.adobe.com

Ouray County Rodeo

RIDGWAY — Ouray County is ready for rodeo! The 2022 Ouray County Labor Day Rodeo will be held Monday, Sept. 5 with a parade at 10 a.m., BBQ in the Park at 11 a.m. and CPRA Rodeo at 1 p.m. Active military and children under six receive free admission.

Labor Day Weekend Rodeo

TRINIDAD — The Trinidad Round-Up Association's 112th annual Labor Day Weekend is a three-day celebration at the Las Animas County Fairgrounds. The weekend includes two rodeo performances, Saturday night dance, performance by the Westernaires, beer garden, expo, concessionsvendors, stick horse races, kids nickel scramble and more. The Labor Day Parade steps off at 9 a.m. Monday, Sept. 5 in downtown Trinidad.

Credit: kojihirano - stock.adobe.com

Yampa Valley Crane Fest

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The 11th annual Yampa Valley Crane Festival will be held Thursday, Sept. 1 to Sunday, Sept. 4 in Steamboat Springs, Hayden and Craig. The festival features four-days of mostly free events, but some activities including crane-viewing shuttles and those with limited space, require advance registration and small fee. Organizers say the best way to view cranes are the four guided crane-viewing events throughout the festival. This year’s event also will have speakers, workshops, educational displays, story-telling event, aerial arts dancers, walks, coloring contest, children and family activities and more. See the full schedule at ColoradoCranes.org.

Credit: Colorado National Speedway

Colorado National Speedway

DACONO — Colorado National Speedway will hold two nights of Labor Day weekend racing. Short track NASCAR-sanctioned racing is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 3 and Sunday, Sept. 4 with post-race firework shows. Tickets are available at the box office or ColoradoSpeedway.com.

Credit: Rocky Mountain Vibes

Rocky Mountain Vibes vs. Northern Colorado Owlz

COLORADO SPRINGS — The Rocky Mountain Vibes host rival Northern Colorado Owlz for three games at UCHealth Park. Thursday, Sept. 1 is Ladies Nights and Friday, Sept. 2 has post-game fireworks.

Credit: Michael Pierce Photography

Four Corners Folk Festival

PAGOSA SPRINGS — The 26th annual Four Corners Folk Festival runs Friday, Sept. 2 to Sunday, Sept. 4 with live performances from Yonder Mountain String Band, Darrell Scott Trio, Heartless Bastards, Dirtwire, Gangstagrass, Amy Helm, William Prince and more.

Credit: Amy Harris/Invision/AP
Trey Anastasio of Phish

Phish

COMMERCE CITY — In what's become a tradition dating back to 2011, Phish returns to Colorado over Labor Day weekend. Known for its improvisational style and dedicated fan base, the jam band will play at Dick’s Sporting Good Park on Thursday, Sept. 1, Friday, Sept. 2, Saturday, Sept. 3, and Sunday, Sept. 4. Phish's run in Colorado ends the band's 2022 summer tour. Tickets are sold at Ticketmaster.com.

Credit: Kizzy O'Neal
Singer-songwriter Jack Johnson will perform at Ruoff Music Center in Noblesville, Indiana, on Sunday, July 3, 2022.

Jack Johnson

GREENWOOD VILLAGE — Singer-songwriter Jack Johnson will bring his 2022 tour to Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre on Wednesday, Aug. 31 and Thursday, Sept. 1, with Ziggy Marley & the Melody Makers. Johnson's tour kicked off in June and wraps in October. Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre is the largest outdoor amphitheater in the Denver metro area.

Credit: Colorado Tourism Office

Telluride Film Festival

TELLURIDE — The 49th annual Telluride Film Festival is this Labor Day weekend. The prestigious event features many films premiering for the first time in North America. From Friday, Sept. 2 to Monday, Sept. 5, more than 50 programs will be screened in ten venues. The lineup of the Telluride Film Festival will not be revealed until the weekend.

Credit: Hershey Entertainment

Red Rocks

DENVER — There is no better venue for live music in the country than Colorado's Red Rocks Amphitheatre! The Red Rocks 2022 concert schedule is still growing and even features some concerts postponed from 2020.

Credit: oles_photo - stock.adobe.com

Movies this weekend

Without any major releases this weekend, most major movie theater chains have declared Saturday, Sept. 3 as "National Cinema Day" with special deals and discounts. AMC, Cinemark and Regal Cinemas are participating, as are all major film studios. In participating theaters, tickets will be no more than $3 for every showing, in every format.

RELATED: Coming to a theater near you: $3 movie tickets for one day

Last weekend's box office

  1. The Invitation — $6.8 million
  2. Bullet Train — $5.6 million
  3. Beast — $4.8 million
  4. Top Gun: Maverick — $4.7 million
  5. Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero — $4.6 million
  6. DC League of Super-Pets — $4.1 million
  7. Three Thousand Years of Longing — $2.9 million
  8. Minions: The Rise of Gru — $2.7 million
  9. Thor: Love and Thunder — $2.6 million
  10. Where the Crawdads Sing — $2.3 million

RELATED: Back to normal at the movies? What to expect this fall

RELATED: 'The Invitation' tops tepid weekend at box office

> Would you like to see your favorite Colorado festival, fair, expo, concert, drama, musical, ballet, run or event listed in 9Things? Send it to alexander.kirk@9news.com.

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