Denver Botanic Gardens

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Summer Finale & Labor Day Weekend

Denver is packed with outdoor activities, blockbuster museum exhibitions and family-friendly fun before and after this Labor Day weekend, Aug. 30–Sept. 2, 2024. Check out these hotel deals and plan a dream getaway. Also, Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park will be featuring fireworks at 9 p.m. (as the park closes for the day) on Sept. 1, 2024.

Music, Movies & Performing Arts | Museum Exhibitions | Sports & Fitness | Outdoor Fun | Urban Exploration | Day Trips

Featured Events


Aug. 31-Sept. 3, 2023 | Phish is back, performing live at Dick's Sporting Good Park for four nights!

Colorado Rockies vs. Toronto Blue Jays

Sept. 1-3, 2023 | Cheer on the home team as they take on one of Canada's finest.

Awful Bigness

Thru Sept. 10, 2023 | The exhibition fills Clyfford Still Museum’s largest, skylit galleries with…

Can't-Miss Events

Civic Center Eats

WHEN: Thru Sept. 28, 2023; Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
WHERE: Civic Center Park

Every Wednesday and Thursday From May through September, Civic Center Eats transforms Civic Center Park into a lunchtime extravaganza with Denver's best food and fashion trucks and live music. It's your chance to savor a variety of cuisines while supporting our city's small local business scene and the Civic Center Conservancy's mission to restore and enhance Civic Center Park, Denver's only National Historic Landmark.


Music, Movies & Performing Arts

'The Sound of Music'

WHEN: Thru Sept. 30, 2023
WHERE: Boulder's Dinner Theatre, Boulder

Based on the true story of the Trapp Family Singers, this Broadway classic is a tale of courage and love. The winner of several Tony awards, including Best Musical, "The Sound of Music" was the final collaboration between Rodgers & Hammerstein.

'Miss Rhythm – The Legend of Ruth Brown'

WHEN: Thru Oct. 15, 2023
WHERE: Garner Galleria Theatre & Bar

This intimate cabaret experience explores the life and times of R&B legend Ruth Brown through story and song, accompanied by a five-piece jazz band. Ruth Brown is a pioneer in the development of rock, blues and jazz, a Tony and Grammy award-winner and an inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. A true original who showed grace and strength with a great sense of humor, Ruth Brown took the stage with as much talent as she did warmth. Here’s to Ruth!


WHEN: Aug. 31–Sept. 4, 2023
WHERE: Dick's Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City
Phish returns to Dick's Sporting Goods Park for their annual slate of Labor Day weekend shows!

Movies & Music in the Park at Parfet Park in Golden

This family-friendly series features free music and a movie on three Friday nights during the summer in downtown Golden's Parfet Park. Music begins at 7 p.m. and movies start at dusk, around 8:30 p.m.

  • Sept. 1, 2023: "Ghostbusters: Afterlife"

Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre Concerts

No summer in Denver is complete without at least one — or two, or five — trips to the awe-inspiring Red Rocks Amphitheatre, just 15 miles from downtown Denver. More than 70 million years in the making, the 9,450-seat venue is flanked by enormous 300-foot red sandstone rock formations and always boasts a star-studded musical schedule.

  • Sept. 1, 2023: REZZ with Ivy Lab, Esseks, ROSSY, isqa
  • Sept. 2–3, 2023: The Chainsmokers – The Party Never Ends with SG Lewis (DJ Set), NOTD
  • Sept. 4, 2023: Gregory Alan Isakov with with special guest Jeremiah Fraites of The Lumineers plays Piano Piano

Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre Concerts

Grab a blanket and take a seat on the lawn or buy a reserved seat at this beautiful venue just south of Denver in Greenwood Village. Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre has a variety of acts coming up this spring and summer.

  • Sept. 2, 2023: Gojira & Mastadon with Lorna Shore
  • Sept. 3, 2023: Jelly Roll with Yelawolf, Struggle Jennings, Josh Adam Meyers

Caveman Music Festival

WHEN: September 2–4, 2023
WHERE: Monument Lake Resort, Weston

Head to beautiful Monument Lake Resort this Labor Day Weekend for live music, hiking, fishing and the last of the September sun! Finish your summer off with three days of festival experience listening to more than 20 bands and musicians.

Museum Exhibitions

Awful Bigness

WHEN: Thru Sept. 10, 2023
WHERE: Clyfford Still Museum

Awful Bigness fills the museum’s largest, skylit galleries and celebrates Still’s biggest, most ambitious works. This installation follows a chronological display of Still’s works in the museum's first four rooms, offering an overview of Still’s groundbreaking path to abstraction.

Return of the Corn Mothers

WHEN: Thru Sept. 30, 2023
WHERE: History Colorado Center

Return of the Corn Mothers marks a three-year effort to honor 22 new Corn Mothers in 2022. What began in 2007 with a small grant from the Rocky Mountain Women’s Institute and eight local women has now expanded to include more than 70 women. Join in the rich tradition of honoring Southwest women through this revitalized exhibit.

Ansel Adams: Early Works

WHEN: Thru Oct. 1, 2023
WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens

Discover the early work of renowned landscape photographer Ansel Adams with photos of the American West. Known best for his high-contrast photos made in the 1970s and 1980s, Adams’ earlier prints feature a softer focus, smaller scale and warmer tones, providing a glimpse into the evolution of the photographer’s signature style. The exhibition features 39 vintage photographs, including some of his best-known works. Adams was a giant in the field of landscape photography, using his art to celebrate and protect the West.

Justin Favela: Vistas in Color

WHEN: Thru Oct. 1, 2023
WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens

Justin Favela's large-scale piñata-paper installations exist at the intersection of cultural identity and pop culture. Vibrant and immersive, Vistas in Color honors and celebrates the sweeping desert landscapes of the U.S. and Mexico and the role that they have played in Latinx identity. A tissue paper floor-to-ceiling mural, created specifically for the Gardens’ exhibition, combines imagery from desert landscapes. The single panoramic image wraps the walls of the entire ellipse-shaped gallery. Plants from different deserts are featured, as well as plants from the artist’s own home and photos. Favela is a Latinx and first-generation American artist based in Las Vegas.

Dave Yust

WHEN: Thru Oct. 1, 2023
WHERE: Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art

Kirkland Museum will host an exhibition of work by longtime Colorado artist and educator Dave Yust. The show, organized by the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery in Lindsborg, Kansas, will feature the artist’s most recent work and will be supplemented when it comes to Kirkland Museum with historical pieces from the museum’s permanent collection.

Fantastic Brush: Twentieth-Century Chinese Ink Art from the Robert and Lisa Kessler Collection 

WHEN: Thru Nov. 1, 2023
WHERE: Denver Art Museum

The 23 ink paintings featured in this exhibit showcase some of the most important artists in twentieth-century China, including Zhang Daqian, Qi Baishi, Xu Beihong, Wu Changshuo and Wu Guanzhong. The collection includes examples by teachers and students, friends and colleagues. The artists come from very different backgrounds: some traveled to Europe to study Western art, some went to Japan to study Japanese art and Western art as filtered through Japanese experience, and others never went abroad. Nevertheless, all were well versed in traditional Chinese ink art.


WHEN: Thru Nov. 5, 2023
WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens

Rich and alluring, the striking blue color known as indigo has served as inspiration for weavers, dyers, designers and sculptors across the globe. This exhibition features contemporary artists from the United States, Nigeria, Japan, South Korea and beyond. Indigo dye is derived from a variety of plants, most often true indigo (Indigofera tinctoria), Japanese indigo (Persicaria tinctoria) and woad (Isatis tinctoria). With a complex history that spans millennia and traverses thousands of miles, indigo holds an influential place in global art, trade and culture. Several large-scale installations are presented, including indigo-dyed yarn by local artist Theresa Clowes and indigo-dyed fabric by Rowland Ricketts, as well as a denim quilt by Anissa Mack and small sculptures by Luisa Uribe.

Confection Perfection: Jolly Rancher Company

WHEN: Thru Dec. 30, 2023
WHERE: Golden History Museum & Park, Golden

Seeking additional income for her family, homemaker-turned-entrepreneur Dorothy Harmsen heard about people making a fortune in Florida selling ice cream from newly invented soft serve machines. In 1949, Harmsen rented a store in downtown Golden and made a down payment on a new machine. Within a few years, she and her husband, Bill, built one of the most iconic confectionery companies in the world.

Epic Events

WHEN: Thru Dec. 30, 2023
WHERE: Golden History Museum & Park, Golden

Epic Events walks you through over three dozen moments that shaped Golden’s past. Those times range from big to small, happy to sad. Some are memorable and some are best forgotten. Step inside this exhibit and feel what it’s like to live through 150 years in Golden.

Legendary People

WHEN: Thru Dec. 30, 2023
WHERE: Golden History Museum & Park, Golden

People are the ingredient that makes Golden a vibrant community. Over the years, so many have called the area home, from nomadic Native Americans, adventurous miners and cunning politicians, to innovative business owners, hard-working students and curious tourists. Their interesting stories make for a rich history. Learn the biographical highlights of some little-known characters, like beloved educator Gertrude Bell, Olympic athlete Lindsey Horan and many more.

Signs O’ The Times

WHEN: Thru Dec. 30, 2023
WHERE: Golden History Museum & Park, Golden

Old signs are powerful evidence of the changes Golden has experienced. Simply put, signs are visual graphics we use to communicate information to each other. We’ve used them for thousands of years, and if you stop and look around, they’re everywhere. The permanent City of Golden collection currently cares for more than two dozen commercial and business signs.

By Design: Stories and Ideas Behind Objects 

WHEN: Thru Jan. 1, 2024
WHERE: Denver Art Museum

A series of thematic installations drawn primarily from the architecture and design collection, this exhibition illustrates the abundance and versatility of approaches to design. How does it come into being? Who creates it and for what purpose? What trends inspire it? And how does it serve society?

The World in Denver: Photography by Robert Weinberg

WHEN: Thru Jan. 10, 2024
WHERE: History Colorado Center

Over the course of his career, Robert Weinberg captured images of those who left their mark on Denver. Best known for his work with the Intermountain Jewish News, Weinberg focused on portraits of people in the Denver community. Weinberg's photography adds a valuable dimension to the visual record of the Mile High City during the 1980s and 1990s. Now legally blind, Weinberg created braille labels to accompany his work, ensuring that his photographs are accessible to all. He continues to advocate for the visually impaired community by promoting organizations to assist people with low vision to live independently.

Gio Ponti: Designer of a Thousand Talents 

WHEN: Thru July 19, 2024
WHERE: Denver Art Museum

Gio Ponti was one of the most inventive Italian architects and designers of his time. For more than 60 years, Ponti’s exuberant approach found expression in public and private commissions from buildings, interiors and furniture to glass, ceramics and flatware, influencing international design for more than 50 years. 



Colorado Rockies vs. Toronto Blue Jays

WHEN: Sept. 1–3, 2022
WHERE: Coors Field - Home of the Colorado Rockies

Cheer on the Colorado Rockies as they take the field against the Toronto Blue Jays!

Labor Day Mini Marathon

WHEN: Sept. 4, 2022
WHERE: Salisbury Park, Parker

Celebrate the last blast of summer at the Labor Day Half Marathon! Sweat your socks off and let summer have its last hooray at Parker's Salisbury Park.


Outdoor Fun

Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park 

Head to the only downtown theme and water park in the country for roller coasters, water slides, family entertainment and much more! Look for fireworks at 9 p.m. (as the park closes for the day) on Sept. 1, 2024.

City Skate at Skyline Park 

Roll into summer like never before. City Skate is your go-to spot for summer fun. Featuring downtown's first-ever roller rink and the return of the Skyline Beer Garden, City Skate is the place to be in downtown Denver. With free mini golf, local food and beer, and events throughout summer, City Skate is sure to let the good times "roll" through Oct. 2, 2022.

Water World 

Beat the heat, relax in the park's beautifully landscaped 64 acres — and ride some serious waterslides.

Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre 

Carved from towering red rock monuments, Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre in Morrison is one of the world's most renowned concert venues. The surrounding park has hiking trails that weave in, around and over the colorful red rocks.

Farmers' Markets

The Mile High City's more than 20 farmers' markets aren't just about locally grown produce, delicious baked goods and prepared foods — though you'll find those in abundance! Each market is a festive, weekly street fair, many with live entertainment and family-friendly activities. 

Denver Zoo 

With over 3,500 animals on 84 gorgeous acres, Denver Zoo is an amazing experience year-round. Your donation helps to provide world-class care for the lions, giraffes and elephants, as well as other wild animals and wild places, from the Rockies to Mongolia.

Denver Botanic Gardens 

One of the top five botanic gardens in the nation, Denver Botanic Gardens is an oasis in the city, offering year-round events, a children’s garden, lifelong-learning opportunities and research to preserve Colorado’s precious natural resources. Meanwhile, Chatfield Farms, located in nearby Littleton, takes pride in its exemplary nature preserve and gardens. Located on 750 acres, this picturesque site includes display gardens and a historical farm with a rustic barn.

City Parks

No matter where you find yourself in The Mile High City, you’re likely only a few steps away from a lush and relaxing green space. Memorial Day weekend is the perfect time to explore Denver's more than 5,000 acres of traditional parks and parkways, as well as an additional 14,000 acres of spectacular mountain parks in neighboring counties that are maintained by the City and County of Denver.

Lesser-Known, Hidden-Gem Parks

If you’re looking for a quiet spot to have a picnic, take in great views or experience a different side of the city, check out these lesser-known Denver parks.

How to Explore the South Platte River by Bike

Take a two-wheeled tour through the heart of the city along this beautiful river. You'll cruise by some of the city's biggest attractions. 

Denver's Best Urban Hikes

Denver is a city with boundless outdoor fun and has an ideal location next to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. While The Mile High City is conveniently close to major peaks for hiking, there's actually no need to head into the mountains when Denver's regional trail system encompasses hundreds of miles for all ages and abilities to explore. 

How to Explore the Colorado Trail in Waterton Canyon

Many people think that Denver’s prettiest, closest and most accessible bit of mountain scenery is Waterton Canyon. This is the start of the famous Colorado Trail, one of the great long-distance hikes (or mountain bike rides) of the Rocky Mountains.   

Pet-Friendly Denver

Denver is home to dozens of pet-friendly activities and destinations, including dog-friendly hotels and dog parks. Find the best on-leash and off-leash fun for your best friend. 


Urban Exploration

Street Art

Denver street artists have been busy brightening (and enlightening) the urban landscape for decades by making canvases of the city’s alleyways, building exteriors, warehouses, garage doors and storefronts. Grab your camera and take a stroll past some of the city's favorite murals. 

Outdoor and Patio Dining

There’s no better way to soak up summer than on one of The Mile High City’s splendid patios. From skyward rooftop terraces to lushly landscaped gardens, these are the ultimate spots to eat and drink alfresco in Denver.

Denver Beer Trail

Denver is a mecca for craft beer. But with 100 brewpubs, breweries and tap rooms in the metro area, where do you begin? Let the Denver Beer Trail be your guide with this sampling and interactive map.


Day Trips from Denver

Colorado State Fair

WHEN: Thru Sept. 5, 2022
WHERE: Colorado State Fairgrounds, Pueblo

The annual Colorado State Fair creates an entertaining, inspiring and educational inter-generational experience highlighting the preservation, promotion and exposition of our State’s vibrant and diverse agriculture, industry and culture.

Rist Canyon Volunteer Fire Department Annual Mountain Festival

WHEN: Thru Sept. 10, 2022
WHERE: 10830 Rist Canyon Rd., Bellvue

Benefitting the Rist Canyon Volunteer Fire Department, events include a full day’s lineup of performers, demonstrations, booths and activities for the entire family. Other festival favorites include a used book sale, silent auction, bake and plant sales, craft and art vendors, food trucks, educational booths and demonstrations. Admission, parking, a hayride shuttle to/from the parking area, live musical entertainment and ice cream all are free of charge.

Caveman Music Festival

WHEN: Sept. 2–4, 2022
WHERE: Monument Lake Resort, Weston

Three days of the best of Americana music in the most beautiful place on earth, featuring 20+ artists, including Zach Bryan, Big Head Todd and the Monsters, Grace Potter, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Jamestown Revival, North Mississippi Allstars, Margo Price,  Lucero and many more!

Tour de Fat

WHEN: Sept. 3, 2022
WHERE: New Belgium Brewing, Fort Collins

Tour de Fat is a costumed bicycle parade followed by a party at New Belgium Brewing with music, entertainment, contests and games.

Saint Rafka Lebanese and Middle Eastern Festival

WHEN: Sept. 3, 2022
WHERE: Saint Rafka Maronite Catholic Church, Lakewood

Saint Rafka Maronite Catholic Church is hosting their annual Lebanese and Middle Eastern festival. Come experience this unique cultural and culinary festival featuring authentic Lebanese and Middle Eastern cuisine and entertainment!

Grand Opening: Family Friendly Beer Garden

WHEN: Sept. 3–5, 2022
WHERE: Rocky Mountain Tap and Garden, Louisville

Bring the whole family (even the dog!) to the Beer Garden Grand Opening Weekend Celebration! The festivities include free brats, a local band, beer bucket specials and outdoor games, including corn hole tournaments, an inflatable bouncy house and a children's water balloon fight!

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