Aspen Signature Events: 10 Ways to Get Everyone Together

Home to four resorts and year-round outdoor recreation, Aspen has gained a reputation as one of the top destinations in Colorado. All the hype and fresh mountain air also give locals plenty of reason to celebrate through festivals and exhilarating competitions. So join the fun and check out the top 10 Aspen signature events.

Top 10 Aspen Signature Events to Share With Loved Ones

aspen events sports competitions

Wintersköl (January)

Aspen’s oldest winter event is Wintersköl™ in January, which has served as the area’s toast to winter for over 65 years. During the four-day event, nearby ski towns and mountains welcome winter with a bang. Snow sculptures, fireworks, fat-bike races, apres ski parties and a canine fashion show are a few things to expect.

X Games Aspen (January)

January also brings action sports, music and good vibes. X Games Aspen takes place on Buttermilk Mountain with all sport competitions free and open to the public. Examples include snowboarding, superpipe, bikecross and snowmobile freestyle. After action-packed sports, big-name entertainers welcome guests to enjoy live music. Tickets are required to concerts and live shows.

aspen signature events food wine

Food and Wine Classic in Aspen (June)

In June, join hundreds of celebrity chefs, winemakers and foodies for three days of the best food in Aspen. The event offers cooking demonstrations, wine tastings and talks led by the experts. Cooking demonstrations range from international flavors and soul food to U.S. cheese and great beers. Food and Wine Classic attendees must be 21 years and older, and children are not granted entrance.

Aspen’s 4th of July Celebration (July)

Celebrate summer and America’s independence at Old Fashioned 4th of July. During the event, residents and visitors come together for a day of fun in the mountains. For example, enjoy a family-friendly parade during the day and fireworks show at night. Other activities include kids carnival, picnics and live concerts. Everyone is welcome to participate and general admission is free.

Aspen Arts Festival (July)

Aspen Arts Festival has impressed art lovers for over 15 years. As one of the most popular Aspen signature events, this festival celebrates fine art and talented artists in the area. For two days, guests admire mediums such as life-size sculptures, photography, ceramics, jewelry and paintings.

Aspen Arts Festival occurs outdoors at Main Street’s Paepcke Park, providing an ideal place for artistic and natural beauty. Admission is free and open to all ages.

aspen festival annual duck derby

Ducky Derby (August)

Presented by Rotary Club of Aspen, Ducky Derby helps raise money for the club in a fun way. Participants can adopt rubber ducks, which the rotary club releases into Aspen’s Roaring Fork River. In fact, they release about 30,000 rubber ducks – all trying to win their owner a cash prize of over $10,000. At Duck Derby, guests also enjoy live music, a silent auction and local vendors.

Aspen Mountain Film Festival (August)

Aspen Mountain Film Festival ranks among the top Aspen signature events because it honors a local philosophy of body, mind, and spirit through film. For five days, watch films that showcase topics such as adventure, sustainability, community and storytelling. Films premiere at the historic Wheeler Opera House, one of the top venues in Aspen.

Jazz Aspen Snowmass (August-September)

One of the longest running events in Aspen, Jazz Aspen Snowmass has entertained guests since 1991. This festival focuses on celebrating jazz through events, performances and educational programs.

Jazz Aspen Snowmass hosts several events throughout the year, however it’s Labor Day Experience makes the holiday even better. For three days, music fans see live performances and big names. Past headliners have included John Mayer, Luke Combs and ZZ Ward.

aspen snowmass balloon festival colorado

Snowmass Balloon Festival (September)

Watch the sky fill with hot-air balloons at Snowmass Balloon Festival in September. The three-day events welcomes all ages to see 30 pilots compete, take photos and try local food.

Additionally, Snowmass Balloon Festival occurs simultaneously with two other events: Cidermass in the afternoon and Septemberfest in the evening. Those interested in the balloon festival should head to Snowmass Town Park, and don’t forget to take pictures.

12 Days of Aspen

Need a place to celebrate the holidays? Consider visiting during 12 Days of Aspen, an all ages event with holiday cheer, carolers and treats. During 12 Days, Aspen transforms into a winter wonderland complete with free ice skating and concerts.

In addition, Santa and his reindeer make special appearances, and 12 Days ends with a fireworks show on New Year’s Eve. Other perks include Parents Night Out, movie screenings, live performances, and arts and crafts.

After picking some Aspen signature events, book a rental in Aspen or Snowmass vacation home.

Make the trip even more memorable with these Aspen sightseeing adventures.