Where can you watch a fire and ice bonfire, run a 5K on a frozen river, celebrate a 167-year-old mountain expedition, take a polar plunge and so much more? At the Rio Frio Ice Fest in Alamosa, Colorado in the beautiful San Luis Valley.
A lot of HeidiTown stories came from our 2016 trip to Rio Frio Ice Fest, and I guarantee if you attend, you’ll have more than a few stories to tell too.
And if you want an even better story, participate in this festival. This will not only provide you with stories, but also bragging rights. After all, how many people can say they’ve ran a 5K on a frozen river? Let alone on the famous Rio Grande River.
The Rio Frio Ice Fest kicks off on Friday, January 27 with a party at the Grover Theater. This year’s festival theme, Tropical Beach, will be alive and well at this fête and throughout the weekend.
Saturday is chockablock with events starting with the Rio Frio on Ice 5K at 9 a.m.
The Rio Frio on Ice was my first 5K (read about my entire experience here). I’ve been known to start a lot of things on ice. My first-ever climbing excursion was also on ice. And while the elevation kicked my butt (Alamosa is at 7,500 feet above sea level) I had a blast, and best of all, I did not come in last in my age category.
You don’t have to run during the entire length of the Rio Frio on Ice – I walked and jogged the course, but if I can finish this race, you can too.
After the 5K, it’s time to celebrate your accomplishment. Attendees can enjoy all sorts of activities in downtown Alamosa such as live ice sculpting, contests such as a kids’ costume event with a Tropical theme, an evening fire and ice bonfire and Grub n’ Pub, a ticketed dining and drinking tour of the town. Ryan and I loved Grub n’ Pub so much that I wrote about it.
Rio Frio Ice Fest doesn’t end on Saturday. Stick around on Sunday for the pancake breakfast, Fremont Parade, Polar Plunge and Fremont Haunt, a coffin race with a twist. The Fremont Expedition (1849) lost a lot of men along the Rio Grande River in the San Luis Valley as they tried to make their way back to New Mexico. The Fremont Haunt competition re-enacts a portion of these tribulations.
Rio Frio Ice Fest represents an opportunity to explore Alamosa and the surrounding area. It also offers attendees the opportunity to experience first-hand what Alamosa has to offer. It’s a truly immersive event, and I think this is what makes it so great. You don’t just see Alamosa, you experience it to the fullest during Rio Frio Ice Fest.
Rio Frio Ice Festival
January 27-29, 2017
Register for the Rio Frio on Ice 5K here.
Featured Festival spots on HeidiTown.com are paid advertisements. Interested in having your festival or event considered for a feature? Email TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.
I can’t wait to write about our trip to Trinidad, Colorado. In the meantime, I’m going to share with you ten of my favorite photos from the festival that brought us to town. I was in town to cover ArtoCade, an art car extravaganza that was like nothing I’d ever experienced before.
Nothing could have prepared me for the creativity on display at ArtoCade. In it’s fourth year, ArtoCade brings people together from around the country to Southern Colorado – people who share the love of turning their cars into art pieces.
Without further ado, here are ten of my favorite photos from the ArtoCade, the parade that was held on Saturday, September 10, 2016, in downtown Trinidad, Colorado. There were 83 entries, so choosing only a few photos to share was very difficult.
Car #1 kicked things off. It’s, “Reincarnation” and was created by Fritz A. & Gail M. of Trinidad, Colorado. Continue reading
There are still 144 days until Christmas, so please don’t panic, however, it’s never too soon to plan holiday travel. And after this summer heatwave we’ve been experiencing, a cool down in the beautiful village of Ouray, Colorado sounds heavenly.
Imagine spending a wintry weekend surrounded by snowy peaks in Ouray, Colorado. Snowshoe on a local trail, enjoy a delicious meal or cozy up with a warm whiskey drink at KJ Wood Distillers. Top it all off with Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival.
Discounted tickets to Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival
The Annual Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival takes place during Ouray’s Winterfest, a seven-week holiday season of events and promotions. It starts after Thanksgiving and last through the Ouray Ice Festival in January. Festive activities take place throughout Winterfest, including Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival.
This blog post is your chance to purchase discounted tickets to Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival, and to start planning your winter getaway in Ouray.
This year’s event takes place on Saturday, December 10, 2016.
This festival features Colorado wines, chocolate and cheeses, and has expanded to include local craft distillers and arts and crafts. Of course, there’s live music too and this year’s festival theme is 1930’s Swing.
Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival is a beautiful way to ring in the holidays with a few of everyone’s favorite things. And it’s also an opportunity to purchase last minute Colorado gifts for all your favorite people.
Click here and enter “HeidiTown” into the “Enter Promotional Code” box to receive a 10% discount on your 2016 tickets to Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival. Promotion runs through August 31, 2016.
Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival is online at ColoradoWineFest.org.
Start planning your visit to Ouray at OurayColorado.com.
Each year, Ouray’s Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Festival supports a local non-profit and this year’s benefactor is Weehawken Creative Arts, helping kids and adults in Ouray County and neighboring communities discover their creative potential through the arts.
Winterfest is supported by the Annual Ouray Jeep Raffle, a half-century-long community fundraiser that gives participants the opportunity to win a jeep.
This post is a paid advertisement. Interested in marketing your event, festival or destination with HeidiTown.com? Please email TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.
I was asked recently to write a “tips for attending winter festivals” post. Well, I had already written that post way back in 2014. Since it has some great winter festival survival tips I decided I’d re-post the original article.
The following post originally appeared on HeidiTown.com on February 7, 2014.
I was prompted to write this post after an experience I had last month during Breckenridge’s Ullr Festival. For the first time ever I experienced the terrible symptoms of severe dehydration. As a longtime Coloradan, I am embarrassed to admit this, but it happened and it’s NOT fun.
On our second night in town, after soaking in the beautiful hot tubs at Grand Timber Lodge, we went out to dinner where I started to feel shaky and nauseated. I thought I was coming down with the flu. I didn’t touch dinner and had to head back to our condo early where I crawled into bed with intense muscle cramps and aches all over my body.
The next day I was fine, a bit weak, but otherwise back to normal. When I searched my symptoms on Google, I discovered that I had suffered from dehydration. Usually I drink a ton of water, but on this trip I was so busy with Nordic skiing and partying that hydration had skipped my mind. It won’t happen again.
This long story leads me to tip number 1, which is HYDRATE! HYDRATE! HYDRATE!
Colorado is at elevation – all of it – but especially in the mountains where most of the great winter festivals take place. Dehydration can happen to anyone, even a Colorado resident – case in point -but those coming from outside the state should be even more conscientious of this issue. Continue reading
This was the most unique winter festival we attended last year. It’s a spectacle of creativity and fire and must be experienced to be truly understood. And, the fact that it’s held in Telluride is a big bonus.
Part Burning Man, part community party, 2015 was the inaugural year of Telluride Fire Festival. The first thing we witnessed on our first night in town was El Pulpo Mecanico. I’ll admit, this fire breathing art car was one of the most amazing things I’ve witnessed in my nearly 40 years on this planet.
Telluride Fire Festival is broken into various piece. There are free events held in the Town of Telluride and in Mountain Village. There are also ticket events. Last year, March Fourth put on an outstanding ticketed show during Telluride Fire Festival.
There are also festival workshops. You can learn to weld or spin fire (yes, fire!). Some workshops have a fee while others are free. See a list of them here.
Dozens of artists come to town for this festival. From fire spinners to DJs to dance troupes, you won’t be able to toss a snowball without hitting an artist during Telluride Fire Festival. This is what makes it one of the most inspiration winter festivals in Colorado. See a list of participating artists here.
During the day you can participate in workshops or visit participating art galleries around Telluride, or you can ski or take a yoga class. That’s the beauty of Telluride, there’s a lot to do in this beautiful town.
Each night of fire festival there will be an event to warm you up including a dance party on Friday with Rob Garza, a Costume Fire Ball on Saturday and a fire-spinning party on Sunday.
A VIP event takes place Thursday evening and only those who purchase an All Access Pass will be allowed into this private reception.
An All Access Pass is just $195 (must be 21 or older to purchase). Purchase your pass here. Tickets to individual events are also available.
While some events are 21 and older, in general this is a festival for anyone who seeks to ignite a creative fire within their soul. I guarantee that something you see, hear or feel at Telluride Fire Festival will spark your imagination.
Telluride Fire Festival
January 14-18, 2016
Free & ticketed
Featured Festival spots on HeidiTown.com are paid advertisements. Interested in having your festival or event considered for a feature? Email TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.
It’s time for another HeidiTown segment on KRFC 88.9 FM.
June has five weekends, so that’s changing up my recording schedule. After this segment, I won’t be back on the radio until July 3rd, so this week’s segment covers the rest of June.
Without further ado, listen NOW to the HeidiTown segment on KRFC.
I attended my first TEDx last year, and was pleasantly surprised. I walked away inspired and impressed with the level of talent and determination that emanated from the stage on that afternoon.
If you aren’t familiar with TEDx, it originated from TED. TED was founded in 1984, by Richard Saul Wurman. He saw a powerful convergence between technology, entertainment and design (TED) happening in the world. The event brings together movers and shakers; individuals who have done amazing things or simple things that have had amazing results.
The event involves speakers taking the stage for up to 18 minutes. There are two annual TED conferences, with one occurring in the United States and the other in Edinburgh, Scotland. Speakers have included movie directors, software developers, founders of various nonprofit organizations and so many more.
A TEDx is an indepdently organized TED event, and hundreds now take place across the world, including here in Colorado.
TEDx Front Range will present the Pioneers, Guides & Innovators who are elevating the Front Range of Colorado to be unique and vibrant. Speakers include artists, environmentalists, teachers, athletes, writers and magicians.
If you are a magician, I’m the gal you want in the audience. I love the feeling of being amazed, and I am truly amazed by magic.
Another person I’m looking forward to hearing speak is artist Daniel Ibanez. He is a G+ sensation with 1,593,199 following him. To put this in perspective, 241 people follow me on G+. Find out why Ibanez is so big on G+ by attending TEDx Front Range.
If you want to be enlightened and amazed, don’t miss this event!
May 31, from 1 to 5:30 p.m.
A new beer festival rolls into Northern Colorado this May, and the unique feature at this event will be food trucks. The brainchild of the guys at Grimm Brothers Brewhouse and my favorite beer blogger, Dave of Fermentedly Challenged, Front Range Rally is about all about drinking good beer and eating good food for a good cause.
More than 30 craft breweries are participating in the festival, along with 15 food trucks. All the proceeds from this event go directly to the Food Bank for Larimer County.
The festival organizers are still pinning down bands for the event, and so far Dr. Doctor, a rock’n’blues band from Boulder, has been booked.
Details on food trucks are yet to be revealed, but you can bet that food options will be as varied and delicious as the food cart scene is in Northern Colorado.
Keep track of all the latest developments at Facebook.com/FrontRangeRally.
Early bird tickets are ON SALE NOW! If you buy your tickets on or before April 30, they are just $29, or $36 for a combo ticket that includes $10 in food tokens. After April 30, ticket prices will go up to $33 and $40. Designated driver tickets are $10 and include complimentary soft drinks.
Front Range Rally
May 18, 2013 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Loveland Food Share Parking Lot at 2600 N. Lincoln Avenue in Loveland, Colorado
Full disclosure: As a redhead with an Irish grandmother, I’m a big fan of St. Patrick’s Day. BIG.
Last year I finally attended the Lucky Joe’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Fort Collins, Colorado, and it’s a heck of a good time.
This is one of Fort Collins’ biggest parties of the year, with half the town coming out to witness the huge parade and after party in Old Town Square. Downtown Fort Collins literally becomes a sea of green, including the beer.
When we arrived in Fort Collins last St. Patty’s Day, Ryan and I were amazed to find the streets full of parade fans, and for good reason. It’s a premiere parade, with participates sticking with the theme of green, green, green. The streets get full, so get there early to find prime parade watching territory.
Families, college kids and leashed dogs all come together to celebrate one of my favorite holidays of the year.
The best part of this event, aside from the parade, are the bands that play in Old Town Square. Fort Collins keeps it authentic with Irish bands and pipe bands.
This year, stick around after the parade, stick around downtown to enjoy music with Irish bands such as Gobs O’Phun, The Commoners and TribU2, a U2 Tribute band. Guinness will be flowing along with Odells and green beer in Old Town Square. In addition you’ll find Irish food, green cotton candy, Bailey’s Irish Cream and Jameson Whiskey.
I’m not normally a fan of green beer, because it’s weird and not authentically Irish, however, last year we indulged and enjoyed our green beers.
This year the parade features over 80 floats and Colorado State University’s own Dr. Temple Grandin is the parade Grand Marshall.
Lucky Joe’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Fort Collins, Colorado
March 16, 2013
Parade route & more info can be found at
Behold the Frozen!
Frozen Dead Guy Days is hardly a secret anymore. In just 12 years they’ve managed to put this fest on the map. It’s been written up in magazines around the world, blogged about and even featured on national television (more than once).
Apparently, when you design a festival around a frozen dead guy, it’s a recipe for media attention.
If, for some reason, this festival is new to you, let me fill in the cold and gory details. There really is a dead guy in Nederland and he’s been frozen for 24 years. His name was Bredo Morstoel. He never lived in Colorado, in fact, he lived and died in Norway. However, he was a believer in cryonics, and after his death his body was shipped to a cryonics lab in California.
Remember cryonics? You don’t here about it much anymore, but it was the popular pseudo-scientific idea that if you kept a dead body frozen, you could somehow bring it back to life in the future when we figure out how to do that, or aliens land and show us how.
Apparently Grandpa Bredo, as the cold corpse is called, had family who also believed in cryogenics. They lived in Colorado, so that’s how Grandpa found his way to a shed on a hill in Nederland. His relatives are long gone, but when the media got wind of this unique situation, Grandpa Bredo became sensational news, and has been cared for ever since, and by cared for I mean a group of individuals deliver ice to his shed monthly keeping his body ready for his future resurrection.
Sound a bit weird? Welcome to Nederland. The tiny town embraces weird like a long lost child, and they let their freak flag fly extra high during Frozen Dead Guy Days.
The festival features an array of off the wall events like the frozen t-shirt contest, coffin races, a hearse parade, ice turkey bowling, frozen salmon toss, snowy beach volleyball, polar plunging and more. I’m not making this up – who could?
The popularity of the festival brings a lot of people to the tiny town of Nederland, so be prepared for crowds and leave the kids and baby strollers at home. Located an hour from Denver, the festival organizers encourage people to take the RTD N bus from Boulder to the event.