Coolorado: Ten Amazing Annual Events in Colorado

Competitors at the Colorado State Fair.
Competitors at the Colorado State Fair.
Colorado State Fair

Colorado celebrated its 140th birthday on August 1. Because it was admitted to the Union on the hundredth anniversary of this country’s declaration of independence, it was quickly nicknamed the Centennial State. But to us, it’s always been Coolorado, the coolest state around, and the thousands of people moving here every month clearly agree. But what, exactly, makes Colorado so hot? As both a primer for newcomers and a refresher course for natives, we’re sharing more than a hundred cool things about Colorado, including these ten amazing annual events:

Opera isn't the only attraction in Central City.EXPAND
Opera isn't the only attraction in Central City.
Central City Opera

10. Madam Lou Bunch Day
Every June, the old mining town of Central City honors the memory of good-hearted madam Lou Bunch with bed races down the center of the street. Get the 2017 schedule at centralcitycolorado.us.

9. Mike the Headless Chicken Festival 
Fruita honors Mike, the chicken that would not die, every June. In 1945, a farmer’s ax took off Mike’s head but did not sever his brain stem, and the bird lived another eighteen months — long enough to tour the country as Mike the Headless Wonder Chicken and inspire this annual festival. Find out more at miketheheadlesschicken.org

8. Manitou Springs Fruitcake Toss
The fruitcakes fly every January in Manitou Springs, where everyone’s least-favorite holiday dessert is celebrated not just with the traditional toss (bonus: fruitcakes can be reused each year), but with a costume competition and bake-off, as well. Watch visitcos.com/fruitcake-toss for next year’s date.

Some of the animals at the National Western Stock Show are on your plate.EXPAND
Some of the animals at the National Western Stock Show are on your plate.
Brandon Marshall

7. National Western Stock Show and Rodeo
The National Western is the largest stock show and rodeo in the world, so full of Western fun and funnel cakes that it will stretch from January 7 through January 22 in 2017 — and is the focal point of a billion-dollar project to keep it in Denver. Find out more at nationalwestern.com.

6. Colorado Championship Ranch Rodeo
Party with the real pros in Hugo every year, where working ranch cowboys compete at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds. This is one of Colorado’s most down-home events; watch for next year’s schedule on coloradochampionshipranchrodeo.com.

Keep reading for five more amazing annual events in Colorado.


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