This autumn, beloved annual festivals, unique cultural events and live music return to The Mile High City. As summer comes to a close, Denver’s cultural scene is still heating up. This fall, after a year without many of the traditional festivals and events that help make The Mile High City a coveted destination, several of Denver’s top culinary, cultural and music offerings are back on the calendar. From beer to barbecue, fine art to immersive experiences, there is plenty to see and do in Denver’s thriving urban center.
Below are several culinary, music and cultural events taking place this fall. For more events and hotel deals, go to the VISIT DENVER website.
Denver Beer Week, September 10-18
The Mile High City will celebrate its world-class beer scene during the 13th annual Denver Beer Week. Featuring nine days of all things beer with dozens of events throughout the city, Denver Beer Week is the perfect time to get out and continue to support the more than 150 local breweries around the city.
Denver BBQ Festival, September 17-19
Typically held over Father’s Day weekend, Denver BBQ Festival is back this fall. Pitmasters from around the country will smoke more than 30,000 pounds of meat, and the festival will feature live music, barbeque demos and more, all held outdoors at Empower Field at Mile High.
Denver Oktoberfest, September 17-19 & 24-26
Celebrating 51 years in 2021, Denver Oktoberfest – dubbed “The Best Oktoberfest” in the U.S. by Maxim and USA Today – will once again feature beloved traditions like the stein hoisting competition, keg bowling and the costume contest, as well as live music each day, traditional German food and plenty of German beer. General admission and VIP tickets are available for both weekends.
Harvest Week, October 3-7
Returning for its 14th Year, Harvest Week is a five-night, pop-up culinary collaboration celebrating Colorado’s harvest, chefs and culinary scene. This year, 30 local chefs will collaborate on a series of five-course dinners paired with local craft beverages at a new location – Ironton Distillery & Crafthouse in the hip RiNo Arts District.
Westword Music Showcase, September 17-18
The Westword Music Showcase is back and bigger than ever. Now a two-day festival celebrating the city’s music scene, it will take over the RiNo Arts District and Mission Ballroom grounds, filling both indoor and outdoor venues with live performances by local and national musical acts, as well as visual and performing arts events, food and drink and more. Headliners include Young the Giant, Thundercat, Hippo Campus, Kaytranada and Duke Dumont among many of Denver’s best local bands.
The Eagles, September 16
Iconic band, The Eagles, will make a stop at Denver’s Ball Arena on their Hotel California 2021 tour.
Zac Brown Band, September 17-18
The Zac Brown Band Comeback Tour with Adam Doleac & Ashland Craft will come to Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre in September.
Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre Concerts
The city’s crown jewel music venue is the world’s only naturally formed, acoustically perfect amphitheater in the country, revered by musicians and music lovers alike. The 80th Anniversary lineup features Jonas Brothers with Kelsea Ballerini (Sept. 5); Jimmy Buffet and the Coral Reefer Band (September 9); Greensky Bluegrass (September 17-19); Leon Bridges (October 6); and more. The full schedule and tickets are available online.
Arts & Culture
Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art Reopening
After a temporary closure due to water damage, the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art is welcoming visitors once again, reopening along with a temporary exhibition Truth, Beauty and Power: Christopher Dresser and The Aesthetic Movement, featuring the beautiful five-legged chair recently attributed to British designer Christopher Dresser. Exhibition visitors will learn more about this lesser-known design movement through an exploration of common motifs used in designs from the Aesthetic Movement (c. 1865–1900) and the influence of British designer Christopher Dresser (1834–1904). This exhibition showcases works from the Museum's permanent collections, many never seen before.
Meow Wolf Denver: Convergence Station Opening, September 17
This fall Meow Wolf, the artist collective known for its immersive and interactive experiences that transport audiences of all ages into fantastic realms of story and exploration, will open its permanent installation in Denver. The Denver venue, dubbed Convergence Station and described by CNN as an “otherworldly escape,” will feature the work of 300 creatives, 110 of whom are Colorado-based, throughout more than 70 unique installations on four floors of colorful rooms, as well as a 450-person capacity music venue, café and retail space.
Van Gogh Alive, through September 26
Presented by Denver Center for the Performing Arts at The Hangar at Stanley Marketplace, Van Gogh Alive is a large-scale, multi-sensory digital art experience that gives visitors the unique opportunity to immerse themselves into Van Gogh's artistry and truly venture into his world. In the experience, Van Gogh's masterpieces come to life, giving visitors the sensation of walking right into his paintings, a feeling that is simultaneously enchanting, entertaining and educational. From start to finish, visitors are surrounded by a vibrant symphony of light, color, sound and fragrance, creating an unforgettable experience.
Doors Open Denver 2021, September 27 – October 17
Doors Open Denver – an annual event hosted by the Denver Architecture Foundation that encourages people to explore the city and experience the importance of design – returns this year with a hybrid format. Featuring 10 sites never offered before, Doors Open Denver will include new and archived virtual tours and in-person tours of some of Denver’s, Boulder’s and Colorado Springs’ most iconic and unique spaces.