Travelers and residents are always thoroughly amazed at the amount of free things to do in Denver that range from festivals to beautiful public parks to extreme sports. If you are looking for something awesome (and free!) to do in Denver this summer, you should keep reading the short list of the options below.
1. Pump your legs and fly at the Ruby Hill Mountain Bike Park
Are you looking for a world-class mountain biking venue in the city? You are in luck. Opened in 2016, the 7.5-acre Ruby Hill Mountain Bike Park is a spectacular urban playground for mountain bike riders who want to go extreme. From wall rides to ramps to berms to table top jumps, Ruby Hill Mountain Bike Park has something exciting for all levels of extreme mountain bike riders. Want to hone your skills? Then try the skills course where you will be challenged by rock causeways and ladder bridges.
Location: Ruby Hill Park at 1400 West Florida Avenue.
2. Be seen at the Cherry Creek Art Festival
One of the most prestigious art festivals in the country comes to Denver every year over the Fourth of July week. The Cherry Creek Art Festival brings 260 artists and art exhibitors from around the world to showcase their artwork that ranges from digital to ceramics to metal works to paintings and everything else in between. The festival has been a favorite free thing to do in Denver in the summer for almost two decades. When you are there you can witness artists creating masterpieces, listen to live performances at one of the stages, and view some of the greatest artworks being crafted today. The Cherry Creek Arts Festival offers a culinary street packed with goodies and you can find plenty of interactive exhibits for you and your family to try while you are attending this world class event.
Location: Near the Cherry Creek Shopping Mall along East 1st Avenue between York Street and Steele Street.
3. Enjoy the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival
A great free thing to do in Denver in the summer to learn about local Asian culture is to attend the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival. The two-day festival in July brings 50 teams to the water with beautiful dragon boats that race across Sloan Lake. The Colorado Dragon Boat Festival is fashioned after the Duanwu Festival which is still a traditional holiday in China and Taiwan. Besides watching these intricately designed boats race, there are performing art stages, an Asian marketplace, an Asian food court that highlights the best Asian cuisine of the city, and children will find plenty of fun items from making dragon masks to origami figures.
Location: Sheridan Boulevard between 17th Avenue and 26th
4. Let it all hang out at the City Park Jazz Festival
The City Park Jazz Festival is a perfect free thing to do in Denver in the summer for music lovers, people watchers, and picnickers. Every Sunday evening from June thru August, the park is electrified when the music starts at 6:00 P.M. The setting is superb with Ferril Lake as a backdrop for the stage and there is generally lots of room for you to enjoy a nice picnic dinner. There is plenty of free parking within the park and if you want to spend a little money try one of the paddle boat rides.
Location: 17th Avenue between Colorado Boulevard and York Street.
5. Put your helmet on and lace up your shoes at the Denver Skate Park
Grab your board or skates and head to the 60,000-square foot Denver Skate Park. The layout of the skate park is ideal for all skill levels with lots of challenging rails, banks, bowls and ledges which make this the premier skate park in the city as well as the state of Colorado. There are plenty of picnic tables, bathrooms and even water fountains for you to enjoy a full day of shredding the concrete with Downtown Denver in the background.
Location: 19th and 20th Street along Little Raven.
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