Denver's summer is packed with free things to do like checking out the rock 'n' roll memorabilia at Rockmount Ranch Wear, hiking at Red Rocks Park or seeing an outdoor movie.
FREE LIVE MUSIC
CITY PARK JAZZ
WHEN: Sunday evenings in June and July
WHERE: City Park
Every Sunday night in June and July, the City Park Bandstand and Pavilion turns into a swinging, open-air jazz club as music lovers of all ages congregate for the free City Park Jazz.
ELWAY'S TASTE & TUNES SUMMER MUSIC SERIES
WHEN: Wednesday evenings, mid-June to mid-August
WHERE: Elway's Cherry Creek
It's a Wednesday night thing and the music is free. The Elway's Taste & Tunes Summer Music Series fills the restaurant-adjacent courtyard with rockin' tunes. Enjoy music, cocktails and Elway's signature menu.
COOHILLS BEATS ON THE CREEK SUMMER CONCERT SERIES
WHEN: Tuesday evenings, June–August
Join Coohills for eight consecutive Tuesdays this summer for their free Beats on the Creek Summer Concert Series. From 6:30–8:30 p.m., live music will fill the restaurant for all guests to enjoy.
FREE MUSEUM DAYS
WHEN: June 3, July 5 (4 p.m.–10 p.m.), Aug. 13, Sept. 12 (4 p.m.–10 p.m.), 2018
Colorado residents can explore the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, a maze filled with treasures of the earth — dinosaurs, dioramas, space exhibits, science experiments, a digital planetarium, IMAX theatre and touring shows.
WHEN: June 2, July 7, Aug. 4, Sept. 1, 2018
Explore the Denver Art Museum's galleries for free the first Saturday of every month. General admission to the Denver Art Museum is free to all youth ages 18 and under every day, granting more kids access to art than ever before. Youth pricing is capped at $5 for special ticketed exhibitions.
WHEN: May 25, June 29, July 27, Aug. 31, 2018
Enjoy nine beautiful galleries of Clyfford Still’s art, historic photos and letters from the Clyfford Still Archives, an interactive timeline, dozens of videos and books and a pair of tranquil outdoor terraces. The Clyfford Still Museum is also free every Friday evening from 5 to 8 p.m.
WHEN: June 5, July 19, Aug. 29, 2018 (York Street); June 5, July 3, Aug. 7, 2018 (Chatfield Farms)
Both the York Street and Chatfield Farms locations offer free days throughout the year, thanks to funding from the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).
WHEN: June 5, July 3, Aug. 7, Sept. 4, 2018
With several themed worlds of wonder for kiddos to explore, the Children's Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus is free every first Tuesday of the month from 4 to 8 p.m.
WHEN: June 8, July 13, Aug. 10, Sept. 14, 2018
Travel back in time ... for free! Enjoy historic demonstrations, take a tour of the Four Mile House Museum and meet our many farm animals. Every second Friday of the month from 12 to 4 p.m.
WHEN: Aug. 4, 2018
Learn about fire safety and the history of firefighting in Denver through more than a century of historical artifacts and exciting hands-on activities. Kids will especially love trying on the child-size firefighting gear and exploring the touch cart full of real firefighting tools and equipment.
MORE FREE TOURS AND ATTRACTIONS
WHEN: Oct. 18, 2017–Oct. 17, 2018
WHERE: Civic Center Park
The 12 bronze heads of Ai Weiwei's Circle of Animals represent the 12 animals of the traditional Chinese zodiac. See it for free at Civic Center Park!
WHEN: May 4, June 1, July 6, Aug. 3 and Sept. 7, 2018
WHERE: Denver's Art Districts
Discover Denver's thriving creative community during a First Friday celebration, held every first Friday of the month. Galleries in Denver's seven art districts stay open late for a festive, street party-like event.
Denver Arts & Venues invites art and architecture lovers to participate in free Public Art Tours — on foot, bike and scooter. These free guided tours focus on small segments of the City’s Public Art Collection and give citizens and visitors the opportunity to venture inside venues such as the Ellie Caulkins Opera House and Colorado Convention Center to view works and hear the intimate details of their creation and installation.
Tour the magnificent, gold-domed Colorado Capitol Building. Stand at exactly a mile high on the steps, see Allen True's beautiful murals, listen in on the Colorado General Assembly, and check out the gorgeous Rose Onyx wainscoting. Free tours are available 10 a.m.–3 p.m., Mondays through Fridays.
Learn how to make money! The U.S. Mint produces 50 million coins a day, each one stamped with a little "D" for Denver. Free tours show every step in the process of turning a dull, blank, metal slug into shiny pocket change.
The Money Museum offers an opportunity to learn about the Federal Reserve Bank. Walk-ins are welcome and groups can make advance reservations. Photo ID required for visitors 18 and older. On your way out, don't forget to get your bag of shredded money.
Housed in Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium (home of the Denver Broncos), the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame honors the legacies of The Mile High City's greatest sports heroes, and features the Gallery of Legends, a "Great Moments in Colorado Sports" exhibit and a section celebrating the achievements of girls and women in Colorado Sports.
The expansive Denver Skatepark — one of the most renowned skate parks in the country — is filled with bowls for all levels of skating skill. Admission is free. Helmets are required.
Ever wonder about the stories of the places you pass? On Denver Story Trek you'll explore the stories behind Denver's historic landscapes and landmarks on an interactive, self-guided tour of the city. It's simple to use and free!
See and experience downtown Denver the green way, on foot! Denver Free Walking Tours offers daily walking tours that start in Civic Center Park, wind through downtown past more than a dozen of Denver's distinctive landmarks, and end in front of Coors Field. The daily tour showcases the history, architecture, landmarks and businesses of The Mile High City.
The Tattered Cover is one of the nation's largest and most well-known independent bookstores and often hosts free signings by some of the literary world's most famous authors. They also offer free Wi-Fi if you want to surf the net while you're there.
If you prefer whiskey to beer, the free Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey Distillery tour was made for you. Learn how the good stuff gets made during an hour-long guided tour, then sample Stranahan's Diamond Peak and Original Single Malt Whiskies.
The Denver Beer Trail provides a sampling of Denver’s top microbreweries. Follow the suggested routes or pick and choose from the list of featured breweries.
Get a behind-the-scenes look at Denver's craft beer world on a free tour at Great Divide Brewing Co. in downtown Denver and at the brewery's River North Barrel Bar location. Tours are about 30 minutes in length and take place at 3, 4 and 5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., and each hour starting at 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Browse the racks and enjoy the free museum at Lower Downtown's historic Rockmount Ranch Wear, the originator of the western snap-button shirt. The walls are adorned with photos of the many celebs who have worn Rockmount shirts, including Eric Clapton, Robert Redford and Elvis Presley.
FREE ATTRACTIONS NEAR DENVER
Travel back in time at the Littleton Historical Museum and get a glimpse into Colorado's pioneer past. Located on 39 acres, the museum consists of two living history farms (one from the 1860s and one from the 1890s), with a working farm, a blacksmith shop and more than 40,000 historically Colorado artifacts.
Located 60 miles from Denver in Colorado Springs, the awe-inspiring Garden of the Gods features gigantic 500-foot high red sandstone rock monuments at the base of Pikes Peak.
"Taste the Rockies!" on a tour at Golden's Coors Brewery. The world's largest brewing site still uses the same Rocky Mountain spring water that Adolph Coors discovered in 1873. Free tours show every step in the brewing process and end with free samples for those over 21.
See some dinos — or what's left of them anyway. Dinosaur Ridge in Morriso, features famous Jurassic dinosaur bones, such as Stegosaurus and Apatosaurus, discovered in 1877, and Cretaceous dinosaur footprints. A guidebook is available for use on self-guided tours.
Carved from towering red rock monuments, Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre in Morrison is one of the world's most renowned concert venues. When there's no concert, the free Visitor Center has a Performers' Hall of Fame, while the surrounding park has hiking trails that weave in, around and over the colorful red rocks.