Top 5 Summer Festivals in Northern Colorado

Beyond-Form-Photography_ARISEwonderland. Top 5 Summer Festivals in Northern Colorado
The ARISE festival. Photo Credit Beyond Form Photography.

The Top 5 Summer Festivals in Northern Colorado



Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest

Is there anything better than free music? Don’t worry, I’ll wait… Started in 1989 by the Downtown Business Association, Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest, originally just NewWestFest is a three-day music festival held in the heart of downtown Fort Collins. This year, from August 9 – 11, over 80 performances will be available to residents and tourists alike. With food, art, and specialty booths also available, plus a Kids Music Adventure, NewWestFest has something for just about everyone. Co-produced by the Downtown Fort Collins Business Association and Bohemian Nights, this festival is free to complete Bohemian Nights organization goals: showcasing new, emerging and established Colorado music; revealing Fort Collins as a music city; and sharing the gift of music. A full festival line-up will be available in June at


Taste of Fort Collins

Who doesn’t love a community celebration with all your favorite things? A Northern Colorado tradition, Taste of Fort Collins will be offering community members three-days jammed full of food, music, and fun June 7 – 9 in Washington Park. Benefiting the Eyeopeners Kiwanis Club of Fort Collins Foundation, Taste of Fort Collins will bring national acts, including Rick Springfield, Dreamers, Uncle Kracker and Lovelytheband; plus local and regional musicians to the stage. While listening to great tunes, festival goers can feast on local and national food; browse local artisans and crafters; and drink local craft brews from some local favorites, including Odell Brewing and New Belgium Brewing. Tickets are currently on sale for one day or weekend pass. Learn more and purchase tickets at

Greeley Blues Jam

For two-days Greeley will be jamming to the blues thanks to the Greeley Blues Jam Festival June 7 – 8. Greeley Blues Jam (GBJ) a 501(c)3 nonprofit attracts over 4,000 fans each year. Voted one of the best blues festival in Colorado, GBJ is something you won’t want to miss. The party kicks off on June 7 in downtown Greeley for a free concert on the 9th Street Plaza. On June 8, fans can attend all music acts for $30 ($40 day of) at the Island Grove Arena. Two stages will be continually going to ensure the party never stops, as their motto goes, it ain’t nothing but a party. GBJ will also have an intimate “Blues 101 Stage” sponsored by the Colorado Blues Society to highlight talented young performers and history of the Blues. This year they will also be offering a bike corral for free, donations accepted. For more information and to purchase tickets please visit

30th Annual Colorado Brewers Festival

How could a festival devoted to beer not make this list? Coming to Fort Collins June 28 – 29 at the Canvas Stadium at Colorado State University, the 30th Annual Colorado Brewers Festival is always…hopping. Featuring over 150 Colorado beers, 40 Colorado breweries, plus food vendors, artisan exhibitors and five hours of live music, this is an event you can’t miss. Benefiting the Downtown Fort Collins Business Association, the Brewers’ Festival fits their mission of advancing vitality, vibrancy, and prosperity of downtown Fort Collins. Started three decades ago by Doug Odell, Scott Smith and Brad Page, and Maggie Kunze, the Brewers’ Festival is a local tradition that highlights great beer in a brewtiful, growing community Tickets went on sale May 1. Visit to purchase and learn more.

ARISE Music Festival

In its seventh year, ARISE Music Festival at Sunrise Ranch in Loveland is not your typical music festival. Held August 2 – 4 this year, ARISE is a leave-no-trace event that provides a weekend of music, yoga, camping, art and community. Co-founded and produced by Paul Bassis, ARISE is an independent, family-fun festival that you’d have to attend to fully experience. Conscientiously-based, ARISE plants one tree for every ticket sold. It also holds a variety of workshops and presentations focused on environmental and social justice alongside over 200 music performances. With over 10,000 people in attendance, ARISE ignites a sense of community and togetherness, including the option for attendees to camp on-site. This year, Leftover Salmon, Tipper, Beats Antique, Railroad Earth and SunSquabi will be hitting the stage, along with many other performers and presentations. Learn more and grab your ticket before they sell out at

Photo by Richard Haro Photography LLC. People dance to the music at the Arise Music Festival Sunday Aug. 5, 2018, in Loveland.
About Laura Smith 18 Articles
Laura Smith is a freelance writer, communications professional and events coordinator. Originally from Nebraska, she moved west for more adventures and more stories. When she isn't writing she can be found running, biking, hiking or at a local brewery.

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