Summer festival fun in Winter Park

Many Coloradans grew up skiing at Winter Park and it holds a special place in many hearts, but have you visited the town during the summer? It may have “winter” in the name, but it’s a fantastic summer festival town with one of my favorite festival venues, Hideaway Park.

Winter Park Beer Festival 2015.

Last weekend, my friend, Karen, and I headed up to Grand County to attend the Winter Park Beer Festival at Hideaway Park.

We pulled into town at 2 p.m. on Friday and settled in our spacious Hi Country Haus condo. This is a great place to stay if you are attending a festival because it’s within walking of Hideaway Park and everything else in downtown Winter Park.

Hi County Haus property in Winter Park, Colorado.
Hi County Haus property in Winter Park, Colorado.

That afternoon we grabbed a beer at Hideaway Brewery, the town’s newest proprietor of craft beer. In the evening we dined at Pepe Osaka’s Fish Taco Tequila Bar and Grill. The ceviche tacos were our favorite and the infused tequila was a bonus; try a strawberry/cucumber margarita.

The next morning we hit Carvers, our longtime favorite breakfast spot in Winter Park. Our “10 minute” wait was an hour and then we waited another 30 minutes for food, but our meals were worth it.

breakfast at Carvers in Winter Park, Colorado.

Winter Park Beer Festival was even better than I remember it, and as I’ve mentioned before, the VIP package is definitely worth purchasing. It comes with access to a VIP section high above the crowd, exclusive beers, a large tasting mug and lunch.

exclusive VIP only beers at Winter Park Beer Festival.
Exclusive VIP only beers.
VIP lunch at Winter Park beer Festival.
A catered BBQ lunch in the VIP section.

The best new addition at the fest was karaoke. This corner of the festival became the spot for dancing, singing and making friends with perfect strangers.

karaoke stage at Winter Park Beer Festival.
This girl rocked some Queen!

Of course the beer selection at Winter Park Beer Festival is awesome. One of our favorites on the day was everything from Vail Brewing Co. There is a slight possibility that this was partly because they were located in the karaoke zone and had super nice and personable staff pouring their beers.

This super chill, super cool beer festival really should be on your schedule next summer.

Winter Park Beer Festival 2015. Full crowd shot from VIP section

After the festival we walked over to Hernandos Pizza Pub, another one of my Winter Park traditions. The wait was an hour and a half, but five minutes after we walked up to the bar a space opened up. It was like a Christmas Miracle, but in August.

Still feeling the need to party, we walked to Ullrs Tavern where Trout Steak Revival, the festival’s headliner was playing a late night gig. And then we shuffled back to our condo, literally right behind Ullrs, and went to bed.

Trout Steak Revival at Winter Park Beer Festival.
Trout Steak Revival

Sound like fun? You still have time to hit some festivals in Winter Park this summer. The Winter Park Music Festival is this weekend at Hideaway Park. Next weekend, August 22, it’s the brand new Winter Park Uncorked, a wine festival at Hideaway Park.

Over Labor Day Weekend there’s Whiskey & Wings Grillfest at Winter Park Resort. In town, visit the Labor Day Block Party & Sidewalk Sale at Cooper Creek Square. For everything happening in Winter Park throughout the year, check out this calendar of events.

Thank you to Winter Park, Colorado & the Winter Park Beer Festival for hosting us on this trip.


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