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9 Things to do in Colorado this Memorial Day 2024 weekend

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Parades, ceremonies and remembrances this holiday weekend will honor those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

COLORADO, USA — Coloradans will honor those who have died in the service of our country with parades, ceremonies and remembrances across the state this Memorial Day weekend.

The holiday weekend also offers opportunities to head outside with street, food, and music festivals. The Denver Arts Festival, Boulder Creek Festival, Kickoff to Summer Memorial Weekend Festival, Colorado Springs’ Territory Days, Taste of Creede, Craig’s Grand Old West Days, and Estes Park Art Market all return this holiday weekend.

The Junior College Baseball World Series is back in Grand Junction, Colorado’s water parks open for the season, and the Bolder Boulder invites runners from across the country.

What are you doing this weekend? Share your Colorado event. 


Water World

FEDERAL HEIGHTS — One of America’s largest waterparks is opening for a summer of fun. Water World has more than 50 attractions including more family tube rides than any other park in America. Parking at the park is free, and Water World allows food and drinks to be carried in, so grab a picnic basket and let the family fun begin. Water World opens Saturday at 10 a.m. Tickets are available online at WaterWorldColorado.com.


Elitch Gardens Water Park

DENVER — The water park at Denver’s Elitch Gardens also opens for the season this holiday weekend. The water park is free with theme park admission and is open through Labor Day weekend. The water park features thrill rides, as well as family rides for the little ones. Cabanas and tubes are available for rent. Single-day and season passes are available at ElitchGardens.com. A fireworks display will be held Sunday at park closing time.


Denver Arts Festival

DENVER — The Denver Arts Festival is celebrating its 25th anniversary this weekend at the Conservatory Green in the Northfield neighborhoods of Central Park. On Saturday and Sunday, the free festival features some of Colorado’s and the nation’s best artists and will have live music, food, wine and beer. To see a music lineup or to download a festival map, visit DenverArtsFestival.com.

Kickoff to Summer Memorial Weekend Festival

DENVER — The annual Kickoff to Summer Festival Memorial Weekend Festival returns to South Gaylord Street in Denver. The festival kicks off summer with three days of family-friendly entertainment, rides, delicious food, vendors, and more. Live music begins Saturday with Very Jerry Band, Johnny & the Mongrels, and Ryan Chrys and the Rough Cuts scheduled at the festival.


Territory Days

COLORADO SPRINGS — The Old West returns to Old Colorado City in Colorado Springs for the 49th annual Territory Days celebration. Territory Days is a four-block street fair with live music on three stages, food, fun and entertainment for the family. The celebration includes one of the state’s largest craft vendor fairs. There will be pony rides, gold panning, a petting zoo, toy train rides, mechanical bull, Native American dancers, live birds of prey, Old West gunfight reenactments, live blacksmithing, two beer gardens and much more. Territory Days runs Saturday through Monday. Visit ShopOldColoradoCity.com to see a list of musical performers.

Grand Old West Days 

CRAIG — For four days in Craig, the Old West comes alive. There will be rodeos, live music, delicious food and libations in the Grand Old West Days from Friday through Monday. Josh Ward will be performing live in concert Saturday night with special guest Jarrod Morris. The Grand Old West Days Parade steps off at 1 p.m. Friday in downtown Craig. For a complete festival schedule or to purchase tickets, visit GrandOldWestDays.com.


Bolder Boulder

BOULDER — The Bolder Boulder has grown since 1979 to be one of the largest community running events in the world. More than 40,000 people of all ability levels will participate in the event on Monday. The 44th annual 10K race starts at 30th and Walnut streets and winds through Boulder neighborhoods with live music and entertainment at every corner. The finish line inside the University of Colorado’s Folsom Field is the perfect setting for spectators to cheer on the participants. Register online for the Bolder Boulder at BolderBoulder.com.


Boulder Creek Festival

BOULDER — The Boulder Creek Festival has been the unofficial kickoff to summer in Boulder for more than 30 years. The festival has vendors showcasing community arts and crafts, three music stages, carnival rides, and food and drinks vendors. The Boulder Creek Festival runs from Friday to Monday in downtown Boulder along the creek between Canyon Boulevard and Arapahoe Avenue. Check out the festival schedule at BoulderCreekFest.com.


Estes Park Art Market

ESTES PARK — Estes Park will be bustling with events and activity over the three-day weekend. Bond Park in the center of downtown will have the 24th annual Estes Park Art Market with local, Colorado and national artists presenting their talents in pottery, glasswork, painting, jewelry, sculpture, woodcrafts, metal crafts, fiber art and more. Live music and food will be available all weekend and Estes Park’s shops and riverside patios will be ready for summer.


Company

DENVER — The hit Broadway musical “Company” brings its national tour to Denver this weekend. The winner of five Tony Awards including Best Revival of a Musical, the new production of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s groundbreaking musical comedy is sophisticated, insightful and hilarious. “Company” features Sondheim’s award-winning songs “You Could Drive a Person Crazy,” “The Ladies Who Lunch,” “Side by Side by Side” and “Being Alive.” The musical plays Denver’s Buell Theatre through Sunday, June 2.


Memorial Day Parade

COMMERCE CITY — Colorado’s largest Memorial Day Parade returns to Commerce City on Monday at 9:30 a.m. The Commerce City Memorial Day Parade brings thousands of community members together in the heart of Commerce City each year. Before the parade, the city will host a Memorial Day Ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park to honor those who have given their lives in service to our nation. After the parade at Veterans Memorial Park there will be live music from Those Crazy Nights, food trucks, booths from veterans’ service organizations, city boards and commissions.


Colorado Remembers

AURORA — The Colorado Freedom Memorial’s 11th anniversary commemoration ceremony, “Colorado Remembers,” begins Saturday at 8 a.m. The ceremony will honor generations of Colorado’s fallen veterans as well as those still serving today. The ceremony begins at 8 a.m. with a free pancake breakfast, activities, ceremonies, military displays, and music. While donations will be accepted, the day’s events are free and open to the public. The Colorado Freedom Memorial is located at Aurora’s Springhill Park at 756 Telluride St.


Fort Logan Memorial Day Ceremony

DENVER — Fort Logan National Cemetery will host a Memorial Day wreath laying ceremony, accompanied by speeches, a moment of silence, and the playing of Taps, rifle volley, patriotic music and flyover. The ceremony begins Monday at 11 a.m. and will last approximately one hour.

Veterans Memorial Day Tribute

CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE — Gold Star families, military groups, veterans and community members will gather to honor the sacrifice of fallen military heroes. Held at Bethany Lutheran Church at 10 a.m. Saturday, the 25th Veterans Memorial Day Tribute is a two-hour ceremony that includes images of fallen heroes, a wreath ceremony, stories, military officials, a reading of names and musical ensemble.

Memorial Day Commemoration 

COLORADO SPRINGS — The Evergreen Cemetery Benevolent Society will hold its annual Evergreen Memorial Day Commemoration at Colorado Springs’ Evergreen Cemetery on Monday. The event will start at 10 a.m. with historic displays. The event is free to the public.

Memorial Day Parade & Celebration 

GRAND LAKE — The Grand Lake Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony honor those who served to protect and defend our country. The parade will begin Monday at 10 a.m. and traverse Grand Avenue with veterans, service groups, horses, and lots of patriotism. A ceremony will follow the parade with a special service honoring veterans in Grand Lake’s Town Park.

Angel Run

COLORADO SPRINGS — The 6th annual Memorial Day Angel Run is Monday in support of local, veteran-owned nonprofit Angels of America’s Fallen and its mission of caring for the children of fallen service members and first responders through developmental activities such as sports, music, and arts. The event starts and concludes at 2323 Garden of the Gods Road in Colorado Springs. Registration for the family-friendly run/walk can be completed online.


Philadelphia Phillies vs. Colorado Rockies

DENVER — The Colorado Rockies are back in town for Memorial Day weekend. The Rockies host the Philadelphia Phillies from Friday to Sunday, followed by the Cleveland Guardians from Monday to Wednesday at Coors Field. For tickets, visit Rockies.com/tickets.


JUCO World Series

GRAND JUNCTION — The 66th annual National Junior College (JUCO) World Series returns to Grand Junction’s Suplizio Field this Memorial Day weekend. The 2024 series begins Saturday and will run through Saturday, June 1. The first pitch this Saturday is scheduled for 9 a.m. Johnson County Community College has received the No. 1 seed. A full bracket schedule is available at JUCOGJ.org.


Colorado National Speedway

DACONO — Colorado National Speedway welcomes summer with one of the biggest weekend events of the season. The two-day Memorial Day Spectacular begins Saturday night with Grand American Modifieds, Pro Trucks, Late Models, and Trains. Sunday will see Super Late Models, Legends, Bandoleros, Pure Stock, and Figure 8s. Fireworks are planned following both performances this weekend. Tickets are sold at ColoradoSpeedway.com.


Taste of Creede

CREEDE — Taste of Creede returns to Creede’s Main Street for a 36th year. The weekend aims to delight visitors with inspired local art and amazing food. The festival kicks off Saturday and continues through Monday’s Memorial Day service honoring veterans in Basham Park. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday there will be live music, entertainers, vendors, food tastings, children’s activities and museum tours. Visit Creede.com for a complete schedule.


MeadowGrass Music Festival

COLORADO SPRINGS — The MeadowGrass Music Festival is celebrating its 15th anniversary this weekend. The festival brings national, regional and local artists to the Black Forest for a family-friendly weekend of entertainment. MeadowGrass opens Friday with live music starting on the main stage at 1:30 p.m. and continues through Sunday. Visit MeadowGrass.org for a complete schedule and to purchase tickets.


Red Rocks

DENVER — There is no better venue for live music in the country than Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The Red Rocks 2024 concert schedule (announced so far) is still growing and this spring and summer looks to be one for the record books.

RELATED: Red Rocks concert season begins: Here’s the 2024 lineup


Denver Trolley

DENVER — The last operating trolley in Denver has begun summer operations. The Denver Trolley has run along the South Platte River for more than 30 years. This summer, the trolley will operate Thursdays through Mondays beginning at 10 a.m. with the last departure at 5 p.m. The Denver Trolley departs from the home platform at REI/Confluence Park every 30 minutes. Roundtrip rides last about 25 minutes and include a narration about the surrounding area.

RELATED: Historic trolley in Denver beginning summer operations


Centennial Village Museum’s Centennial Celebration

GREELEY — Greeley’s Centennial Village Museum has preserved and interpreted American western heritage since 1976. The living history museum’s Centennial Celebration, set for Saturday, offers historical house tours, blacksmithing, print shop demonstrations and woodcarving. Performances by the Buffalo Soldiers reenactors begin at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday. The eight-acre Centennial Village Museum is located just south of Island Grove Regional Park.


Memorial Weekend Encampment 

FORT GARLAND — The annual living history military encampment at Fort Garland Museum is set for Saturday. The encampment portrays life at the fort with infantry, cavalry, artillery and blacksmith demonstrations. Kids of all ages are welcome to the museum from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday to learn about 19th century life on a frontier fort.


Paddlefest 

BUENA VISTA — Paddlefest is back in Buena Vista from Thursday to Monday. The weekend-long festival is all about water. There are kayaking competitions, gear swaps, street vendors, guest speakers, races, tournaments and live music. To see a full schedule of all the events or to register, visit CKSPaddlefest.com.


Rocky Mountain Stamp Show

AURORA — The 73rd annual Rocky Mountain Stamp Show runs from Friday to Sunday at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds and admission is free. With more than 40 dealers from across the country, 400 frames of exhibits, and a full day of philatelic seminars, the Rocky Mountain Stamp Show is the largest in the region. The 2024 show theme is “Native Plants of Colorado.”


An Alpine Symphony

DENVER — Principal Conductor Peter Oundjian will lead the Colorado Symphony for an sendoff to the 2023-24 season with Richard Strauss’ “An Alpine Symphony.” Pianist Bruce Liu, who rose to widespread renown in 2021 after winning the XVIII International Chopin Piano Competition, will also breathe new life into Prokofiev’s “Third Piano Concerto.” Performances are Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Boettcher Concert Hall. For tickets, visit ColoradoSymphony.org.


Longmont Summer Home Show

LONGMONT — The Longmont Home Show takes over the Boulder County Fairgrounds from Friday to Sunday. The home and garden event features vendors, expert advice, services, and demonstrations to help you get your home improvement project off the ground this summer. Admission and parking are free at this weekend’s show.


The North Pole: Santa’s Workshop

CASCADE — Colorado’s favorite Christmas-themed amusement park has opened for the season. Home to Santa’s village and the jolly old elf himself, The North Pole: Santa’s Workshop, located at 7,500 feet at the foot of Pikes Peak west of Colorado Springs, traditionally opens the weekend before Memorial Day and remains open through Christmas. With vintage rides and sweet treats, the park as been spreading Christmas cheer since 1956.


Governor’s Art Show  

LOVELAND — The 33rd annual Governor’s Art Show & Sale has opened for a month-long exhibit at the Loveland Museum with both in-person and online fine art sales. Recognized as one of the largest juried fine art shows to exclusively feature Colorado artists, this year 61 of the state’s most talented artists will be showcased, including a Legacy Artist. Find the perfect new piece for your art collection, add a statement piece to your home décor, or select a special gift for friends or family – all while supporting Colorado’s finest artists. The show is in person at the Loveland Museum or online at GovernorsArtShow.org through Sunday, June 9.


City Park Farmers Market

DENVER — The City Park Farmers Market has opened for its fourth season. The market has more than 100 vendors offering a variety of local Colorado produce and products from area farmers, food producers and agriculture-based brands. The market runs every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. through October. Other activations include a run club at 8 a.m., donation-based yoga at 9 a.m. and live music from local acts.

RELATED: Denver farmers market returns for fourth year


Where Did We Sit On The Bus?

DENVER — Nine-year-old Bee Quijada sits in a suburban classroom. During a history lesson on Rosa Parks, she asks, “Where did Latinos sit on the bus?” What follows in the one-person show “Where Did We Sit On The Bus?” is a theatrical mixtape of Bee’s life. The drama plays the Singleton Theatre at the Denver Performing Arts Complex through Sunday, June 2. For tickets and showtimes, visit DenverCenter.org.


Old West Days 

JACKSON, WY. — The Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce presents its 44th annual Old West Days, a 10-day festival celebrating Jackson Hole’s western heritage, culture, and community. The festival continues through Monday, May 27. Old West Days signature events include Elkfest Weekend, the Mountain Man Rendezvous, the Best of the West Parade, the Teton Powwow, ranch tours, family activities, and live music. There will also be a High Noon Chili Cook-off and Old West Brewfest.


Orcas: Our Shared Future

DENVER — The Denver Museum of Nature & Science has opened its newest temporary exhibition: “Orcas: Our Share Future.” The exhibition traces the evolution of our beliefs about orcas, from fear to admiration and awe, as we discover their intelligence and complex social structures. At the exhibition, visitors will see a life-sized replica of an orca family, inviting guests to witness their harmonies in an immersive underwater environment. Guests will also learn about the Indigenous peoples of North America’s Northwest Coast, whose respect for orcas is reflected in their art and traditions.

RELATED: Denver museum’s dinosaur exhibit gets an upgrade


88 Drive-In Theatre 

COMMERCE CITY — The only drive-in movie theater in the Denver metro area reopened for a 48th summer season. This weekend, the Commerce City drive-in theater is showing a double feature of “IF” and “Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire” on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Memorial Day Monday. Tickets are $10 per person, and children under 12 are free. Tickets are sold only at the box office starting at 7 p.m. for that evening’s program.

RELATED: Colorado drive-in movie theater says it is reopening with a double feature


Movies this weekend

John Krasinski’s imaginary friends movie “IF” claimed the top spot at the box office last weekend with about $35 million. Paramount considers it a successful debut and is optimistic about its longevity as summer actually begins for school age children.

The summer, which for Hollywood begins the first weekend in May, is still getting started and could rev up this Memorial Day weekend with the infusion of “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga” and “The Garfield Movie.”

Opening this weekend

  • Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
  • The Garfield Movie

Last weekend’s box office

  1. “IF,” $35 million.
  2. “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes,” $26 million.
  3. “The Strangers—Chapter 1,” $12 million.
  4. “The Fall Guy,” $8.5 million.
  5. “Challengers,” $2.9 million.
  6. “Back to Black,” $2.9 million.
  7. “Tarot,” 2 million.
  8. “Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire,” $1.7 million.
  9. “The Blue Angels,” $1.3 million.
  10. “Unsung Hero,” $1.1 million.

Do you know of a cool, fun Colorado festival, fair, expo, concert, or event you think we ought to mention in this week’s 9Things or the future? Send it to alexander.kirk@9news.com.

RELATED: John Krasinski’s ‘IF’ hits a box office nerve

SUGGESTED VIDEOS: Colorado’s History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=videoseries

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9 Things to do in Colorado this Memorial Day 2024 weekend

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