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Not sure what to do with your family this winter? We’ve compiled a great list of outdoor activities and events happening all winter long, throughout our beautiful state! While you’re enjoying yourself, don’t forget Platte River Medical Clinic is here for you this winter, whether you come down with a sinus infection, injure yourself on the slopes or catch the flu during your holiday travel. We offer same day and next day appointments. To schedule online, click here!

Outdoor Activities

Ice skating 

Sledding/Tubing

Snowshoeing 

  • Beaver Creek: The McCoy Park trail system is said to be Beaver Creek’s best-kept secret and features 32 km of groomed trails.
  • Breckenridge: 18 km of nature trails meander through old-growth spruce forests and Beaver Meadows.
  • Crested Butte: Check out the Sunday bistro breakfast or moonlight dinners at the Magic Meadow yurt; reservations required 48 hours in advance.
  • Eldora: Dedicated snowshoe trails and terrain for all abilities.
  • Keystone: Sign up for the guided Mountain Top Snowshoe Trek.
  • Vail Nordic Center: 10 km of separate snowshoe trails with magnificent views of the Gore Range.

Skiing/Snowboarding

Most years, Colorado’s 28 ski and snowboard resorts open earlier and stay open later in the season than anyone else (roughly early October to late April). Colorado has some of the largest ski resorts in the nation, but we also treasure the hidden-gem ski areas, which still offer great snow and plenty of space to perfect your skills. And we have the highest altitude lift-served terrain in the country — a factor that contributes to massive amounts of our famous, incredibly dry, fluffy Colorado snow.

Events

 

THE POLAR EXPRESS TRAIN RIDE

WHEN: Nov. 9–10, 13–17, 20–24, 29–30 and Dec. 1, 4–8, 11–15 and 17–23, 2019

WHERE: Colorado Railroad Museum

The story of The Polar Express TM is theatrically re-created and combined with a magical train ride at the Colorado Railroad Museum. Children get to meet Santa and experience all the sights and sounds of this classic tale as if happening all around them.

TURKEY TROT 5K/ WALK RACE

WHEN: Nov. 23, 2019

WHERE: Brighton Recreation Center

Awards given to 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place finishers in each age and gender category for walkers and runners. (Must be Present to win).This is a Bolder Boulder qualifying race! Use your time to get the best possible starting position for the Bolder Boulder! Stay around after the race to visit with vendors and a chance to win other prizes that will be raffled off by bib number!

DENVER CHRISTKINDL MARKET

WHEN: Nov. 22–Dec. 23, 2019

WHERE: Skyline Park

The Christkindl Market includes vendors from Germany and other countries — as well as local artisans — offering high-quality, handcrafted gifts such as traditional hand-carved wooden figurines, handmade candles and ornaments. Traditional German food will tempt your taste buds. Sip on warm Glühwein (hot spiced wine) as you listen to traditional Christmas carols and live German music. Entry is free and the entire family is invited to enjoy this great tradition! 

ICE SKATING AT DOWNTOWN DENVER RINK AT SKYLINE PARK 

WHEN: Nov. 26, 2019–Feb. 16, 2020

WHERE: Corner of 16th and Arapahoe

Take a spin on the ice — for free! Grab your family and friends and head to 16th and Arapahoe in downtown Denver to the Downtown Denver Rink at Skyline Park in Downtown Denver! Skate rentals are $7-$9, or bring your own pair and skate for free. Free days for kids will take place throughout the season. Look for regularly scheduled entertainment and activities each week, including Friday night DJs; Saturday morning skating lessons; Saturday night concerts; and Sunday afternoon family entertainment.

GRAND ILLUMINATION 

WHEN: Nov. 29, 2019

WHERE: Denver Union Station

The Grand Illumination features beautiful lighting displays in the LoDo District and Denver Union Station. Downtown’s unique holiday atmosphere is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. Festivities at Denver Union Station include a countdown to this year’s holiday lighting, carolers and treats, drinks at Terminal Bar and more.

LIGHT THE LIGHTS

WHEN: Nov. 29, 2019

WHERE: Denver City and County Building

The City and County of Denver and 9News present the annual lighting of Denver’s City and County Building. This fun and heart-warming tradition is nearly 100 years old and is the perfect kick-off to the holiday season! Don’t miss the ceremonial flipping of the light switch between 6:30 and 7 p.m. Be sure to explore the winter festival in Civic Center Park, which will feature a variety of family-friendly activities, roaming carolers, food trucks, beer and warm beverages from 4 to 8 p.m. Bring hats, gloves and scarves for the Giving Tree to benefit Denver families in need. 

SANTA’S VILLAGE AT CHATFIELD FARMS

WHEN: Nov. 29–Dec. 22, 2019

WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms

Explore Chatfield Farms as it is transformed into a magical holiday wonderland. Santa’s Village is a family-friendly holiday event including hayrides, holiday gifts, Santa’s Workshop and so much more.

ZOO LIGHTS

WHEN: Nov. 29–Dec. 30, 2019

WHERE: Denver Zoo

Zoo Lights will span 70 acres of Denver Zoo‘s campus with nightly entertainment, animal encounters, Santa meet-and-greets and, of course, illuminated animal sculptures that swing through trees, jump across lawns, hide in bushes and appear in places where they’re least expected.

A HUDSON CHRISTMAS

WHEN: Nov. 29–30 and Dec. 6–8, 13–24 and 26–31, 2019

WHERE: Hudson Gardens & Events Center

Bundle up for a visit with Santa at Hudson Gardens in Littleton. After sharing your list with Ol’ Saint Nick, sip hot chocolate as you stroll the outdoor paths lined with trees decked with more than a million twinkling lights.

BLOSSOMS OF LIGHT

WHEN: Nov. 29, 2019–Jan. 1, 2020

WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens

Denver Botanic Gardens is proud to host Blossoms of Light, an annual family-friendly event that has become a tradition for people across Colorado. Come interact with incredible light displays — a large field of sound-reactive, animated LED lights — plus sip warm drinks and nibble on tasty treats as you stroll. 

MILE HIGH TREE

WHEN: Nov. 30, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020, 5 p.m. – 10:30 p.m., free shows every evening

WHERE: Sculpture Park at the Denver Performing Arts Complex

Join in the free nightly festivities at Denver’s newest holiday attraction, the Mile High Tree. It’s a brilliantly lit, 110-foot-tall immersive art installation that provides a dazzling lights and music show every 30 minutes throughout the evening. At 39-feet in diameter, the conical structure can host up to 140 guests at a time for an immersive viewing experience within the tree itself. There will be areas to purchase both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks as well as holiday treats. 

OLDE GOLDEN CHRISTMAS

WHEN: Nov. 30–Dec. 31, 2019

WHERE: 1010 Washington Ave., Golden

Olde Golden Christmas includes a community candlelight walk, Victorian carolers, free Newfoundland dog-pulled cart rides, a holiday art market, parades, shopping, music and theater productions, Santa Claus and twinkling holiday lights!

9NEWS PARADE OF LIGHTS

WHEN: Dec. 6–7, 2019

WHERE: Downtown Denver

The 9NEWS Parade of Lights is the signature event of the downtown Denver holiday season. The countless sparkling lights, marching bands, giant balloons, majestic floats and delightful characters will once again wow hundreds of thousands. Viewing along the parade route is free, and grandstand tickets are sold for seating in front of the beautifully illuminated City & County Building.

NOEL NORTHGLENN

WHEN: Dec. 6, 2019

WHERE: Northglenn Recreation Center

Outside, get cozy eating s’mores by a fire as you wait to take a carriage ride.  Inside kids will have a ball with indoor snowball fights, face painting, bubble rides “floating” on top of the pool and  holiday cartoons! Kids can get a holiday book at Rudolph’s Reading Raffle and play the “Guess How Many” game to win a ride to school in a Northglenn Police squad car!  Santa and Mrs. Claus can’t wait to see you! Photos with Santa can be purchased for $5 or you can do them on your own phone/camera. Remember to grab a bite, pizza and drinks will be on sale and the Northglenn Senior Organization will be hosting its Annual Bake Sale, which starts at 2:30 p.m. In order to further the spirit of giving in our city the Northglenn Bike Program will have refurbished bikes at Noel Northglenn for residents that need a bike. This is a first come, first served opportunity to get a bike. Youth and adult sizes will be available. Bikes will be set up on the recreation center pool deck by 4pm. If you or a family member need a bike we invite you to join us.

ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS PARADE AND WINTER FESTIVAL

WHEN: Dec. 14, 2019

WHERE: Downtown Brighton

The City of Brighton will present the 24th Annual Festival of Lights Parade and Winter Festival on Saturday, Dec. 14. The family-favorite event will kick-off at 10 a.m. with a free movie and continuing throughout the day with a variety of historic downtown and winter festival activities until the tree lighting ceremony and parade. The parade will feature local organizations, businesses and families who have come together to spread the holiday spirit with the Brighton community.

NOON YEAR’S EVE

WHEN: Dec. 31, 2019

WHERE: Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus

Enjoy the sights, sounds and excitement of Times Square, all before bedtime! Each hour, countdown to a glittering ball drop and pop bubble wrap fireworks as fountains of confetti flutter all around for Noon Year’s Eve!

 

NEW YEAR’S EVE FIREWORKS IN DENVER

WHEN: Dec. 31, 2019

WHERE: 16th Street Mall

The sky will once again sparkle over downtown at the close of 2019 with the New Year’s Eve Fireworks Downtown. The two spectacular fireworks shows will occur at 9 p.m. and midnight. For the best viewpoints, stand along the 16th Street Mall. The identical fireworks shows will be synched to a music playlist from live DJs along the mall. Each show will run for about eight minutes and can be viewed from anywhere along the mall. The DJs will play tunes from 8 p.m. to midnight.

 

Sources: colorado.com, visitdenver.com