As the leaves give way to golden hues and the fresh air becomes a bit chillier — families are often drawn to pumpkin patches, hay rides, and fried apple cider donuts. These Denver area fall festivals have something for everyone, from fun activities for the little ones to snacks and drinks for the adults. These events are a great way to spend time with your local Denver community and enjoy the crisp fall air while you create lasting memories.
Where? 6728 County Road 3-1/4
This yearly festival in Erie, Colorado is the perfect spot to enjoy an afternoon with friends and family. The farm opens near the end of September, with attractions such as the fall festival and Terror in the Corn. Events typically run until the end of October — so grab your tickets while they’re available! Anderson Farms limits ticket sales daily to ensure the farm doesn’t get overcrowded and everybody has a chance to enjoy the experience. Children three and under are free and weekday tickets begin at $17.
Some of the main attractions include the pumpkin patch, the paintball shooting gallery, the pony rides, and the gem mining. There are farm animals, a barrel train, a tire mountain, and henna and airbrush tattoos for kiddos looking to flex their “ink” at school the next day. Don’t miss out on the duck races or the five-minute escape rooms, which present a moderate challenge without the traditional time commitment of an escape room facility.
PRO Tip: No animals are allowed at Anderson Farms, except for trained service dogs. This is to protect the farm animals and other guests — allowing everyone to have a safe and enjoyable fall festival experience.
2. Cider Days
Where? 801 South Yarrow Street
Lakewood’s annual Cider Days is a festival that many local residents look forward to once autumn rolls around. Combining live performances, kid-friendly activities, and even delectable fall treats — the entire family is sure to have a ball. Children can expect tractor train pulls, craft zones, and even a trick pig show and a petting zoo. If you have a sweet tooth, don’t forget to sign up for the pie-eating contest. Of course, all things apple will include both hot and cold cider options, as well as an apple pressing demonstration and “pick your own” trees on site. Enjoy freshly baked apple crisps and products such as apple chips, apple butter, and apple sauce by Ela Family Farms. In total — there are over 30 apple products to sample!
Tickets begin at $8 for adults for advance admission or $12 the day of. Children two and under are free. If you opt to bike to Cider Days, the event will store your bike for free. Simply drop your wheels off at Bike Valet in front of Heritage Lakewood Belmar Park. For those 21 and up, head over to the beer garden or the hard cider tasting to sample some local returning favorites as well as some new brews. The $40 cider-tasting package includes a commemorative glass and an unlimited sampling of over 50 hard ciders.
PRO Tip: Parking is limited, so attendees are encouraged to take advantage of public transportation and ride-sharing when possible.
Where? 7711 South Parker Road
Tagawa Gardens will have carriage rides, crafting booths, and of course — plenty of pumpkins! The unique yard designs throughout the festival grounds are created by staff members and include landscaping tips and inspiration for those looking to spruce up their yards. Each day of the festival, there are guest educators, stage shows, and a range of activities that celebrate wildlife and wholesome family fun.
Guests are invited to get up close and personal with live animals and even explore the Bat Cave and the Spider’s Lair. Decorate a pumpkin, enjoy the water bubbles, take a mini train ride, and even dive into some delicious plates from local food trucks before calling it a day. Tagawa Gardens is one of the area’s top garden centers and this event provides the perfect opportunity to explore the shop while allowing the little ones to have an action-packed day of fall-themed games.
PRO Tip: For the day of the event only, Tagawa Gardens is selling plant packages in their nursery department for a special discounted price!
Where? 8500 West Deer Creek Canyon Road
This annual tradition takes place at Chatfield Farms, located in Littleton, Colorado. This short 20-minute drive from Denver gives families access to a 10-acre pumpkin patch, a corn maze, and a variety of child-friendly activities. Hayrides, photo booths, carnival games, and even an obstacle course are all designed to delight and excite even those who are saddened to see summer go. There are food trucks and vendors onsite, as well as beer and hard cider options for those looking to imbibe while they enjoy the festival.
Tickets begin at $16 for adults, with seniors, students, and military members receiving a discount. Children under two are free! Children under the age of 10 are invited to explore the mini-maze, which can be less daunting than the 7-acre corn maze. Classic fair food, such as funnel cakes, hotdogs, kettle corn, and even fresh squeezed lemonade are available at various vendors throughout the event. There are wildlife observation areas and a treehouse that enables guests to check out barnyard animals and admire the surrounding farmland. Those feeling a little more daring may want to check out the corn maze after dark or the Dead Zone Scream Park.
PRO Tip: If you’re planning on choosing the perfect pumpkin for your doorstep, bring a wagon for easy transport! Also, there is “pumpkin daycare” onsite so you can enjoy the festival without carrying around your prize.
Where? Pearl Street
Boulder’s three-day fall festival attracts thousands of visitors each year. There will be local food options, as well as a beer, wine, and margarita garden. Brews are from Avery Brewing Company and cider is from Woodchuck Hard Cider. Food options include Boulder Bowls, Rae’s & Kay’s, and Kingcomo Quesadillas. Attendees will have live music each day and all sorts of autumnal activities along the historic Pearl Street Mall. Whether you’re into folk, rock n’ roll, classical, or even Latin reggae — there’s a little something for everybody on the performance stage.
Guests will find over 80 artisans in the Firefly Handmade Market. This is the perfect space to support local community members and businesses while also filling in the gaps on your Christmas gift list for friends and family. This beloved Boulder tradition is a great way to get out in the community, meet new friends, and have a wonderful time celebrating the new season and the changing colors surrounding the historic street.
PRO Tip: Volunteers are always welcome at Boulder’s Fall Fest. If you’re interested in helping out, navigate to the website and there will be a signup link and a point of contact.
Where? 715 South Forest Street
The Pumpkin Harvest Festival is held each year at Denver’s Four Mile Historic Park and is hailed as Denver’s original fall festival. Families will enjoy pumpkin picking, a 40-vendor marketplace, live music, and plenty of dining options. Grab an order of apple cider donuts while you’re perusing the market or while you watch the kiddos build their own scarecrow. Activity booths include face painting and a western-themed scavenger hunt. The harvest festival was unsurprisingly named the 2022 family favorite by the Colorado Parent Magazine — making it a popular attraction for families of all shapes and sizes to enjoy the beautiful autumnal weather and festive activities.
This festival is held on a weekend in mid-October, with general admission tickets beginning at $16. VIP tickets include access to VIP-only areas and the bar, as well as a “Meet and Bleat” with the resident goats. VIP ticket holders can skip the line in the face painting and craft area, as well as enjoy snacks. Members of Four Mile Historic Park benefit from free admission. Parking will be available on a partially paved, partially dirt lot.
PRO Tip: Children three years old and under don’t need a ticket and military members and senior citizens can grab their tickets at the front desk with a valid ID.
Where? 170 MacGregor Avenue
If you’re in the mood for a day trip, head up to Estes Park for the annual Autumn Gold Festival at the end of September. Admission is free and families will enjoy festival classics, such as funnel cakes and corn on the cob. Keep your ears tuned for the sounds of nearby bull elk showing off their bugling. Herds of elk gather in the Estes Park region for their rutting season and it’s a sight that should be on your bucket list if you’ve never experienced it. The festival celebrates the changing seasons, as the aspens adjust their colors before losing their leaves for the winter.
From Denver, jump on the Peak-to-Peak highway and take in stunning views while you make your way to this family-friendly festival at the gateway to the Rockies. Make a weekend out of it and head to the national park for hikes, scenic drives, and picture-perfect moments that are good enough to put on the Christmas card.
PRO Tip: Kids will love the face painting booths, as well as the lawn games and the popular race car Legos. There will also be a classic car show and raffle tickets being sold to support local high school scholarships.
Where? Bear Creek Care & Rehab
Morrison is known for being home to the iconic Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater venue, but they also host an exciting fall event each year. The Ciderfest is held at the end of September and families can sip on their apple cider while enjoying activities such as pony rides, hay rides, a bouncy castle, and horseshoe tournaments. The Morrison Ciderfest has been a recurring event since 1989 and continues to draw a strong crowd each fall. Admission is free and the festival hours run from 10 AM to dark.
There are a wide variety of vendors on site, including a silent auction and craft exhibits. Parents can enjoy the local hard cider sampling area. Despite being a short drive from Denver, families can also opt to explore a meandering drive through the foothills on the Lariat Scenic Loop drive, which connects Golden, Evergreen, Morrison, and other small cities. The drive provides opportunities for leaf peeping, as well as iconic stops such as the Buffalo Bill Museum, the Coors Brewery, and even Golden Gate Canyon State Park.
PRO Tip: If you’re looking to enjoy some live music, the Morrison Town Band hits the stage at 10 AM, with shows from Pennies on the Track, That Damn Sasquatch, and Vamos Pest coming on throughout the day.
9. Harvest Fest
Where? 3636 Chestnut Place
Ironton Distillery & Crafthouse is proud to bring back its annual Harvest Fest. The free family event includes a range of seasonal food specials and of course — plenty of drinks to go around. There will be free tasters of favorite fall spirits and bottle discounts. Kids can explore the pumpkin patch and pick their perfect canvas for the “no-mess” decorating kits that not only keep their hands and clothes clean but also allow for easy transportation for the parents. If your child enjoys crafts, check out the additional spooky crafting options from Crafty Chassis.
Live music will be provided by the local Ghost Town Drifters and there will be a fortune teller onsite if you wish to have your future predicted. To top off the event, there will be a Hocus Pocus screening! While costumes aren’t a requirement for entry, they’re certainly encouraged and the best costumes can be entered to win prizes.
PRO Tip: Limited street parking is available along Chestnut Place and 36th Street. There is also a parking garage two blocks away for a covered option.