November 8  |  Our Communities

A Newcomer’s Guide to Loveland, Colorado | 15 Things New Loveland Residents Need to Know

So you’ve decided to move to Loveland after learning about the many alluring qualities of the Sweetheart City, including its family-friendly feel, artsy culture and access to outdoor recreation. And we don’t blame you!

Once you’re here, there are a few things you need to know. From basic facts like population and average temperatures, to more in-depth information about things to do with kids or our community’s best annual events, you’ll find it right here. And most importantly, welcome to Loveland!

The Loveland Basics:

Founded: 1877

Population: 77,446 (2018 Estimate)

Elevation: 4,982 Feet

County: Larimer County

Area Total: 35.56 Square Miles

Rainfall: 15.74 Inches

Snowfall: 41 Inches

Average Annual High Temperature: 63.9°F

Average Annual Temperature: 48°F

Average Annual Low Temperature: 32.1°F

Median Family Income: $54,775


The City is Nicknamed the Sweetheart City

Sweetheart City Loveland, CO

And for good reason! The origin of the nickname goes back to the mid-1940s when postmaster Elmer Ivers and marketing extraordinaire Ted Thompson created the Valentine Re-Mailing Program, which is still practiced to this day. Each February, more than 100,000 Valentines are sent to Loveland inside larger envelopes, and are hand-stamped by volunteers with a Valentine’s verse and re-mailed to the intended recipients. Plus, the month of February is packed with a variety of events celebrating love and Valentine’s Day, like the Loveland Sweetheart Festival. And during the rest of the year, we get lovely reminders of our city’s sweet nature with programs like City with HeART, which promotes both public art and local business.


Our Weather is Pretty Ideal

Just like most places in Colorado, we enjoy an average of 300 days of sunshine here in Loveland. Couple that with the fresh mountain air we experience and you get a pretty ideal setup for outdoor adventure, outdoor patio sitting, and an overall cheerful environment. We do experience pretty snowy winters, so make sure you’re prepared with a heavy coat, thick socks, gloves and waterproof boots — not to mention, an ice scraper in your car. Don’t be the guy or gal stuck in a snowstorm scraping ice off your windshield with a credit card!


We Love Our Dogs Here

If you ask us, dogs are members of the family — and many of the businesses in Loveland agree! You can take your furry friend to a number of restaurants and breweries in town, including Big Thompson Brewery, Crow Hop Brewing Co., Cactus Grille, Verboten Brewing and many more. Plus, you can even go shopping with your dog at the Promenade Shops at Centerra or JAX Mercantile Co. To learn more about the many dog-friendly businesses in Loveland, click here. And if you’re looking for outdoor adventure, head to Devil’s Backbone Open Space or the dog parks at Mehaffey Park and Fairgrounds Park.


There Are Plenty of Annual Events in Loveland

Annual Events in Loveland, CO

No matter what season it is or what you’re into, there’s always something going on in Loveland. The community looks forward to a variety of annual events, including the Loveland Classic in April, the July 4th Festival, Loveland Oktoberfest in September, and Winter Wonderlights during the holiday season. To see a complete list of our city’s most anticipated annual events, click here.


Downtown Loveland is Packed With Activity

If you’re just getting acquainted with the restaurants, shops and businesses of Loveland and feel overwhelmed by it all, downtown Loveland is an excellent place to start. This historic and ever-growing district is home to some of the city’s best hotspots, from coffee shops to craft breweries and art galleries to parks. Use our self-guided tour of downtown Loveland (complete with an interactive map!) to guide you through this lively area. Our route begins at a locally owned coffee shop, winds through Civic Center Park, travels through The Foundry, and invites you to step inside art galleries, shops, a theater and even a dessert bar.


Boyd Lake State Park is a Local Favorite

Ask any local about outdoor recreation and they’ll likely list Boyd Lake State Park amongst their favorite destinations. This massive 1,700-acre lake is popular for swimming, boating, fishing, seasonal hunting, biking, hiking and camping — in fact, there is very little you can’t do at this scenic lake. But to see all you can do, here’s Everything You Can Do at Boyd Lake State Park.


…But There’s Endless Outdoor Recreation Available

Rocky Mountain National Park Estes Park, CO

To say Loveland is outdoorsy is an understatement. After all, many might move here for the outdoor recreation access alone. Loveland sits at the base of the Rocky Mountains on the borders of Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests, providing endless opportunities for hiking, biking, camping and more. And that’s just looking west! To the east, residents have access to Pawnee National Grassland, so you could essentially explore the mountains and the plains in the same day. Plus, the city’s park system is extensive. There are over 25 city parks in Loveland, including the recently completed Loveland Sports Park, which boasts a synthetic turf championship Field with terraced seating, field lighting, sand volleyball courts, basketball courts, inline hockey rinks and a skate park. If you like to hit the links, the Northern Colorado region has experienced a golf boom in recent years and there are dozens of courses within an hour’s drive, including three city-owned facilities.

For indoor activities, check out The Best Yoga Studios in Loveland and The Best Gyms With Childcare in Fort Collins, Loveland and Windsor.


There’s No Shortage of Things to Do

You’ll never run out of things to do in Loveland, whether it’s winter, spring, summer or fall. Some of our favorite destinations include Grimm Brothers Brewhouse, the Loveland Museum/Gallery, the Benson Sculpture Garden, the Rialto Theater, Sweet Heart Winery, Loveland Laser Tag and Boyd Lake State Park.


Keep it Casual

If you’re moving here from out of state, you may have heard the term “Colorado Casual” and wondered what that entailed. And if you are moving in-state, you live and breathe the phrase already. In short, it means “wear what you want” — because jeans, a t-shirt or flannel, and boots will do just fine in most scenarios.


Loveland Loves Its Arts

Benson Park Sculpture Garden Loveland, CO

Photo Courtesy of the Loveland High Plains Art Council

Loveland is extremely focused on the arts, in just about every form. In fact, numerous nationally acclaimed sculptors call Loveland home, and you can see their work at local galleries and various community events. The Benson Park Sculpture Garden contains an impressive collection of more than 150 sculptures, and each August, the city hosts Sculpture in the Park, a world-renowned outdoor sculpture show attended by 150,000 art lovers. The almost 100-year-old Rialto Theater has been lovingly restored and hosts performing arts groups and musicians throughout the year. In keeping with tradition, the Rialto periodically features silent films with live music accompaniment.


Fort Collins and Denver Are Not Far

You can easily access the conveniences of a larger city without sacrificing the peace and small-town charm that Loveland offers. Hop on I-25 South to access Denver, which is about an hour away. And the attractions and amenities of Fort Collins are even closer at hand, as the city is about a half-hour north of Loveland. Whether you work in either of the two cities, you are attending a major event in the region, or you need to catch a flight at DIA, you are centrally located here in Loveland.


Kids Will Thrive Here

Loveland is a popular city for families to settle down, for the excellent schools, family-friendly events and activities, and overall kid-friendly vibe. Just take a look at these kid-friendly activities for the summer, including outdoor attractions like the Cattail Creek Mini-Course, Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch and Devil’s Backbone Open Space, and indoor destinations like Wooden Mountain Bouldering Gym, Loveland Laser Tag and Fun Center, and Loveland Museum. Or you can travel less than an hour west to Estes Park for more kid-friendly activities!


We Have a Great School System

Thompson School District Loveland, CO

Loveland students are served by the Thompson School District, considered one of the best districts in the state, as its ACT scores are above average. And the district is the 17th largest in the state, with 16,280 students in grades PK and K-12 and a student-to-teacher ratio of 18 to 1.

For higher education, Loveland is in close proximity to Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado University in Boulder, and the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley. Loveland also hosts campuses of Aims Community College and Regis University.


Our Craft Beer Scene is Gaining Momentum

Located within close proximity to the beer giants in Fort Collins, Loveland is also garnering critical attention for its community of craft beer greats. That list includes the oldest brewery in Loveland, Grimm Brothers Brewhouse; in addition to producing some of the best beers in Colorado, the team brews The Sweetheart City’s annual Valentine’s Day beer, The Bleeding Heart. You can learn more about Grimm Brothers in our blog post Meet the Team Behind Grimm Brothers Brewhouse in Loveland, Colorado.

For more information on Loveland’s breweries, check out The Ultimate Guide to 20 Craft Breweries from Greeley to Loveland, Colorado.


Loveland is Relatively Affordable

If you, like many new residents, are renting upon arrival, you may be pleased to discover that the market is relatively affordable in Loveland. With an average sale price of $387,309 (September 2019), Loveland homes are relatively affordable — especially compared to the remainder of Northern Colorado (not to mention, our southern neighbor of Denver). So if you do decide to invest in real estate here, an average price under $400,000 makes it approachable, but the growing popularity of the area makes your investment valuable. Consult our Market Reports for updated insight on the current market, and if you would like to learn more about Loveland real estate, feel free to contact us!


We’re Glad You’re Here

Loveland, CO

If you have any questions, whether it’s real estate- or community-related, we’d love to be your resource. Follow our blog, Northern Colorado Speaks, for more insight on living in Loveland. And contact us directly for anything related to Loveland or Northern Colorado real estate.

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