Glenwood's Big Three 5

Beloved Summer Events Bring the Masses Outside

Strawberry Days

Sunshine, music, a maze of merchant booths, laughter, locals, tourists, and fried food galore: Nothing says “summer in Glenwood” quite like Strawberry Days. Now celebrating its 120th anniversary, the festival has brought family-friendly fun and excitement to locals for generations.

This year the event kicks off in Sayre Park on Friday, June 16 and continues through Sunday, June 18. Festivalgoers can expect the return of annual traditions such as continuous live entertainment, Family Fest, a beer garden, arts and crafts fair, community parade, and food court (funnel cakes, gyros, and turkey legs, oh my!).

Friday night festivities are not to be missed, with the highly anticipated crowning of Bighorn Toyota Miss Strawberry Days 2017 at 5:30 p.m. Stick around for a three-hour rockin’ time warp with Colorado’s best ‘80s cover band, The Goonies, from 7-10 p.m.

On Saturday morning at 10 a.m., one of Glenwood’s most treasured community spectacles, The Strawberry Days Parade, will bring the masses to Grand Avenue as floats roll through downtown. Expect a host of familiar faces, happy kids, and maybe even a splash from a water soaker or two. After the parade, be sure to grab your free strawberries and ice cream in Sayre Park before they’re all gone. Then it’s time to shop, eat, play, and enjoy live entertainment including Saturday night headliner The Freddy Jones Band at 7 p.m.

The festival concludes on Sunday, with activities and entertainment going strong until early evening. Or, if the kids are up for some last-minute thrills, check out the Strawberry Days carnival in the Glenwood Springs Mall parking lot, which runs June 14-18.

Summer of Music

What’s better than lounging on a picnic blanket in Two Rivers Park on a clear midsummer evening, listening to fabulous live music and visiting with friends and neighbors? The Summer of Music series continues for its seventh season in 2017, sponsored by the City of Glenwood Springs and other local partners. Running rain or shine every Wednesday from June 28 through August 2, openers begin at 6:30 p.m. and headliners go on at 7:15 p.m. Free five-star people-watching also runs throughout the evening, as any in-the-know local will tell you.

Exciting musical acts from the 2017 lineup include Denver’s top vintage jazz band Joe Smith and The Spicy Pickles (June 28), Afro-Cuban rockers Battle of Santiago (July 5), Americana band The Black Lillies (July 26), and Grammy-winning bluegrass musician Peter Rowan (August 2). Jazz Aspen Snowmass students and local favorites Whiskey Stomp (June 28 and July 12, respectively) punctuate the lively roster of openers.

Fourth of July Celebration

Time to break out those American flag t-shirts hiding in your closet. The City of Glenwood Springs invites the community to mark your calendars early for the town’s annual Fourth of July celebration, held this year on Tuesday, July 4 from 5-10 p.m. in Two Rivers Park. Also scheduled in the park that day is the Lions Club 4K Walk/Run beginning at 8 a.m., which benefits the club’s scholarship fund.

The evening’s celebration is expected to attract a crowd of some 2,500 locals and tourists celebrating their patriotic spirit. All are encouraged to walk or bike to the event, or park at Glenwood Springs High School where a free shuttle service will be available. For the safety and enjoyment of the crowd, please leave personal fireworks, pets, and glass items at home. Smoking will also be strictly prohibited at this family-focused celebration, and alcohol will not be served.

Eventgoers can enjoy games, crafts, swag gifts, food from local vendors including hamburgers and hot dogs from the Lions Club, plus live performances from Denver’s high-energy musical group Mannequin the Band at 5 p.m. and Symphony in the Valley at 8 p.m.

After dark, a dazzling display of low-altitude fireworks is scheduled to begin at 9:20 p.m. Expect plenty of ooohs and aahhs.