It feels like summer just started. But alas, the Fourth of July has come and gone and Labor Day is knocking on the door, alerting us that this season is about to come to a close.
Take advantage of the few weeks we have before pumpkin spice lattes start showing up everywhere and engage in the fun, warm-weather activities Fort Collins has to offer. From farmers’ markets to hiking trails, there are so many things to do around town while the sun is still high. We’ve gathered up some of our favorites here. Have fun out there!
It just wouldn’t be summer in Northern Colorado without at least one hike! If you haven’t hit the trails yet this season—or just want one last hoorah up in the mountains—grab your hiking boots, a bottle of water and spend a day hiking. We have a list of our favorite hikes in the Fort Collins and Loveland area, which includes everything from Arthur’s Rock to Horsetooth Rock, so click here to start exploring!
Since 1989, NewWestFest has been rocking Fort Collins every summer—and when it joined forces with Bohemian Nights in 2005, it got even bigger! The three-day festival is free and family-friendly, planned for August 14-15 in downtown Fort Collins. This year, the event plans to be slightly scaled back. You can learn more and get updates on new developments, here.
The Cache la Poudre River is truly a sight to behold. Known as just “The Poudre” to locals, the river can be explored a variety of ways. Kayaking, fishing and even whitewater rafting are great ways to enjoy Colorado’s only wild and scenic river! And if you’re not in the mood for outdoor exploration, Highway 14, which follows alongside much of the river, offers stunning views from the comfort of your car!
Photo courtesy of FoCo Food Truck Rally
Food trucks are a Fort Collins specialty, with our area bosting some of the best in the state, serving everything from tacos to mac and cheese and waffles! You can get a taste of some of our local food trucks at the weekly FoCo Food Truck Rally. Each Tuesday night through September 14th, enjoy 15+ food trucks at City Park along with live music from 5:30 to dusk. Click here for all the information and on this week’s featured trucks!
Before the weather starts to cool down and we’re back to sipping on hot chocolate in front of the fire, head to one of our favorite ice cream shops in Fort Collins for a sweet treat! Old Town Churn, Walrus Ice Cream, Kilwins—no matter which local shop you choose, it’s sure to hit the spot on one of our dwindling hot days.
As the season comes to a close, you may be thinking about all the cool things you did, the fun you had and time spent with your family. But what about the things you learned? No matter how old you get, there is still incredible value in gaining new skills and hobbies! Luckily, the Fort Collins area is packed full of experts ready to teach you everything they know. Want to learn how to knit? Head to Your Daily Fiber. Looking to improve your cooking prowess? The Cooking Studio will help you learn how to cook anything and everything. Click here to explore our article, 18 Fort Collins Classes Where You Can Learn a New Skill and expand your knowledge this summer!
A cultural staple in downtown Fort Collins and the River District, Bas Bleu has been presenting outstanding theater shows since they opened their doors in 1992. They are getting ready to wrap up their 2021 Summer Outdoors season so be sure to catch a show before it’s over! All shows are currently being hosted outdoors at Wendy Ishii’s home at 3301 Rawhide Drive in LaPorte. You can find their August lineup here.
Holiday Twin Drive-in was originally built in the late 1960s and is one of Colorado’s last remaining drive-in movie theaters. From mid-spring through the first weekend in September, everyone is invited to watch new movies just like they did in the old days. Before summer ends, head down to the drive-in to catch a flick! They are planning shows through the first week in September. Click here to see what’s currently playing!
The sun is shining, the birds are chirping and FoCo restaurants are serving people outside! While mask regulations have been dropped, more people are vaccinated and outdoor dining isn’t our only option anymore, dining al fresco is still something we look forward to every summer. If you haven’t had the chance to sip a cold beer or dig into some delicious grub on a patio this season, check out our guide to our local favorites and hit the town!
Encompassing 265,461 acres within the Front Range, with a diverse geography filled with towering peaks, waterfalls and glacial lakes, meadows and valleys, and dense forests, Rocky Mountain National Park would take months to fully explore—so you better get started! Before summer ends, we recommend heading to the park for a day of hiking, biking, swimming, or camping. We, of course, have a whole itinerary for the area. Click here to learn more!
Summer is the height of growing season here in Northern Colorado! Take advantage of it—and support local farmers—by paying a visit to a local farmers’ market before the season is up. Click here to find our updated guide to nearby farmers’ markets which includes hours, COVID-19 notes, addresses and more.
We couldn’t write this post without mentioning FoCo’s incredible beer scene! No matter the season, grabbing a beer at one of our fine local breweries is a must. As summer ends, spend one last day savoring fruity sours, light lagers and wheat-y ales before pumpkin, gingerbread and graham cracker notes come calling in September! Here’s a list of our favorite Northern Colorado breweries to help you get started.
On those hot Colorado days, nothing hits the spot more than an icy frozen drink. Frozen margaritas, milkshakes, mocktails—you name it! If you’re looking for a great spot to grab an ice-cold drink, visit our post The Best Places to Get Frozen Drinks (Alcoholic & Non-Alcoholic) in Fort Collins, which includes favorites like 3 Margaritas, The Flipside, Nick’s and many more.
Located near Sheldon Lake, City Park Pool is one of Fort Collins’ favorite summer attractions. The outdoor pool is also home to a 30-foot water slide, a second curly slide, a lazy river, a large play structure and a picnic area for relaxation! Admission is just $6 and $7 for children and adults, with discounted rates later in the day. For all the details, click here!
When all else fails, hit the town! Old Town has so much to offer in the summer, from pop-up events to food trucks, boutiques, art installations and more. Spend the day sipping on coffee from Bean Cycle Roasters, savoring A/C at the Museum of Art Fort Collins, sifting through vintage clothes at Ragstock, or grabbing snacks at The Exchange. Click here for a complete day’s itinerary to help you explore the area to the fullest!
What are your favorite things to do in the area during the summertime? Let us know in the comments.