Every year around August 15, I can sense a slight shift in the air. While the temperatures may say that it is still summer, there is something subtly different in the air that lets me know Autumn is quickly approaching.
While I’m a bit sad that the sizzle and excitement of summer are beginning to fade, it also means loads of fall festivals and Autumn activities will start filling up my calendar. It’s the busiest season of the year for shopping, outdoor adventures, harvest celebrations, and social gatherings prior to our retreat indoors for the holidays and the winter chill. We’ve updated the information below with plans for each event and activity for 2021. (P.S. You know we love a good list of activities! Be sure to check out Halloween Fun, Things to Do in Colorado Springs, and Top 10 Christmas Activities).
LIST OF AUTUMN ACTIVITIES AND SIGHTS
Every year, we put together a guide for Autumn activities, such as viewing the golden Fall foliage of the Rocky Mountains:
This year we decided to gather some fun activities that you can enjoy with your family or a day/evening out with the adults. I dug through every event I could locate and highlighted a few regular happenings. In addition, I’ve included some not-so-well-known options. Click on the included links for details on each event.
We hope you enjoy an exciting and entertaining fall season!
Related Reading: Map of estimated peak fall colors
- LABOR DAY LIFTOFF (September 5-6, 2021) A quintessential Colorado Springs experience where you can see over 70 hot air balloons in flight over Prospect Lake.
- PICK-YOUR-OWN FARMS (ongoing): Spend the afternoon picking apples, blueberries, raspberries, and pumpkins at pick-your-own-farms such as the Happy Apple Farm near Cañon City or Long Neck Pumpkin Farm. Reservations are required for Long Neck Pumpkin Farm.*Be prepared for photos! In addition to a fun family day out, this could be a great opportunity to capture great family photos.
- PAWTOBERFEST (cancelled for 2021-tentative 2022 date is September 17, 2022): Bear Creek Regional Park, Colorado Springs): Gather the entire family, including your furry ones, and support the Pikes Peak Humane Society during this annual event. Vendors, food trucks, trail runs, and loads of family activities, as well as brews for the adults!
- ROCK LEDGE RANCH POW WOW ( September 18, 2021, Rock Ledge Ranch, Colorado Springs): An enjoyable way to take in the heritage and beauty of our First Nations. They honor us with their traditions and history. You and your kids will walk away with a deeper appreciation for those who were here before us. Dancing, drumming, singing, food, and vendors.
- ASPENS ON THE AVENUE (September 25, 2021, Old Colorado City): Stroll the streets of Old Colorado City while enjoying the fall colors and taking in hundreds of fall themed artwork on display from wood-turners, metal workers, painters, jewelers, and more.
- FALL HARVEST FESTIVAL (October 9, 2021, Gold Hill Mesa): Bring the kids out for live music, pony rides, and more!
- OLD COLORADO CITY FALLIDAYS (October 30, 2020, Colorado Springs): This festival includes art demos, live music, sidewalk sales and more. There will also be a pumpkin and apple.
- BOO AT THE ZOO (Select dates in October, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Colorado Springs): A unique experience for kids to dress up and trick-or-treat in a safe environment. The zoo strives to promote sustainability by providing candy that is made without palm oil.
FOOD AND DRINK
- PALMER LAKE WINE FESTIVAL (September 11, 2021) Tickets include wine tastings from 25 Colorado Wineries. Enjoy live music, food and gift vendors.
- A NIGHT AT THE RANCH DINNER AT A GRAZING LIFE (September 25, 2021, A Grazing Life Ranch, Black Forest): Enjoy a Full Ranch Tour while learning about their conservation practices, followed by dinner, brews, cocktails, music and wine. Sign up for tickets here. Hurry–these tickets sell out well before the event.
- HARVEST FEST AT THE HOLY CROSS ABBEY (September 25-26, 2021, Cañon City): Live music, fresh roasted chilies, sweet vendor booths, loads of wine tasting! Bring your lawn chairs and picnic baskets and soak in a lazy fall afternoon. Free admission. Wine tasting tickets available for purchase.
- MORRISON CIDER FEST (September 25,2021, Morrison): Bouncy houses, hay and pony rides, music, vendors, and a car show. Hard cider tastings available for a fee.
- HAUNTED BREW FEST (October 16, 2021, Norris Penrose Event Center, Colorado Springs): 21+ Brewfest featuring over 70 breweries, distilleries, & wineries.
- BLACK FOREST OKTOBERFEST & TRUNK OR TREAT (October 30, 2021) Enjoy German beer, brats, music, and contests. Kiddos can participate in the Trunk or Treat for safe trick or treating. Entrance is free.
SHOPPING, ARTS & CRAFTS
- SALIDA FIBER FEST (September 11 & 12, 2021, Salida): Fiber arts demonstrations, classes and activities all along the Arkansas River in beautiful Salida, CO. Wine and Beer garden, vendors, and numerous talented artists!
- SUGAR PLUM FOOD AND GIFT MART (October 16, 2021, Colorado Springs): The largest holiday show in Colorado Springs. The official kickoff of the holiday shopping season! Get an early visit with Mr. & Mrs. Claus, as well as, hundreds of food and craft vendors. Click here for more info.
- HOLLY BERRY FOLK ART FESTIVAL (cancelled for 2021, Garden of the Gods/Rock Ledge Ranch): The most popular outdoor art festival of the year. Located on the stunning grounds of Rock Ledge Ranch. Proceeds from the festival are used for ongoing restoration work at the ranch. Live music, talented artisans from all over the country! Tickets and information found here.
- PARADE OF HOMES (September 10-26, 2021, various locations around COS): The Parade of Homes has made some adjustments this year in an effort to keep everyone safe. Check out their website for details and tickets.
OUTDOOR, MUSIC, & MISC AUTUMN ACTIVITIES
- SALIDA BIKE FEST (September 18, 2021, Salida): A festival celebrating bikes of all kinds. There will be an assortment of activities including a parade, various races, and a kickoff party with live music and beer.
- FOX FUN FOX RUN (October, 23, 2021) This trail run out at Fox Run Regional Park in Black Forest will be a great option for folks looking for an ultra race.
- AUTUMN COLOR RUN (Cancelled for 2021, Buena Vista, CO): Enjoy the beautiful fall foliage and mountain views as you run either a half marathon, 10k, 5k or 1 mile fun run in this adorable down just over the Front Range.
- SPANISH PEAKS INTERNATIONAL CELTIC MUSIC FESTIVAL (September 16-19, 2021, La Veta): A traditional Celtic music festival straight from the hills of Scotland. Local residents originally from Scotland have gathered together the best musicians to bring us a traditional experience.
- FALL COLORS PHOTO TRAIN RIDE (Usually various dates in September, Leadville): A 3-hour train ride through some of the most beautiful scenery in Colorado. Bring your camera and a jacket to take in the wonder and sights of the bright, golden Aspens! Check website for dates.
- BLUES ON THE MESA (October 2, 2021, Gold Hill Mesa) Your $30 ticket for this event grants you access to a full day of live music from regional and national artists. A portion of ticket proceeds will benefit The Pikes Peak Blues Community.
Hopefully, you found a few options that piqued your interest! Don’t forget about all the Oktoberfest celebrations, Pumpkin Festivals, and Wine Festivals that abound. May all your pumpkin spice, falling leaves, snuggle by the campfire starry nights, and any other Autumn dreams and desires come true!