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    Top Summer Activities & Festivals in Boulder

    2021 Summer Fun, Festivals and Events

    Ah, summer in Boulder. Things take on a different pace as the days lengthen, a lush canopy of trees comes into full leaf, and outdoor-lovers happily spend even more time outside. Here are just a few reasons to join in the fun — our list of things to do in Boulder in summer.

    Splash and Play

    On warm, sunny days, water is especially refreshing at the foot of the Rocky Mountains:

    Tubing Boulder Creek

    Summer Hiking

    In the summertime, trails are sprinkled with wildflowers and the long days mean more time for hiking. On warm days, try these shady hikes:

    • Much of Lion's Lair is shaded by towering (and fragrant) ponderosa pines, with a steep summit that overlooks all of Boulder Valley.
    • Ranger Trail is quite lush in summer, providing shade. Connect with E.M. Greenman trail, the lower portion of which is also shady.
    • Anne U. White is also known for being in the shade of a narrow canyon in Boulder's foothills yet is a good choice for a lower-intensity hike.

    E.M. Greenman Trail

    Imbibe and Refresh

    Boulder loves its summer bevies. Try these ideas:

    Group on patio Boulder

    Boulder Outdoor Performances

    Music just sounds better on a Boulder breeze! And in Boulder, even the arts happen outdoors, from dance concerts to theater performances on the trails. There are summer concerts held outside in Boulder every week in gorgeous locations ranging at foot of the Flatirons and on beautiful Pearl Street and beyond. This summer, we expect lots of events to happen outdoors with lots of space for audiences.

    • Check out Boulder Arts Outdoors for drive-in music, dance and other performing arts.
    • Visit the Dairy Arts Center calendar to look for innovative porch concerts and drive-ins.
    • See all the details on summer concerts, including musician lineups, on our comprehensive Hot Summer Music page.
    • Much of Boulder's summer fun is happening at the Bandshell in Central Park. Here's a full Arts in the Park lineup that includes dance, theater, hippy bluegrass church (no joke!), opera and more.

    AscenDance Bus Performance

    2021 Festivals and Events

    Please Confirm Events and Happenings

    Please check official event websites or call to verify schedules before making plans to attend an event. Conditions can change due to COVID-19 safety measures. Listings on this site may not reflect the most recent updates.

    Jump to: Ongoing Through Summer  |  June  |  July  |  August

    Plan your visit around one of dozens of summertime festivals or events. Below are a few annual events to get you started, with a complete calendar available here

    Ongoing Through Summer

    Boulder Farmers Market
    Every Saturday, April 3-Nov. 20, 2021 (8am-2pm)
    Every Wednesday, May 5-Oct. 6, 2021 (4-8pm)
    A feast for the eyes, palate and soul! One of the best farmers' markets in the country, with all local producers. Takes place outdoors on 13th Street.

    Colorado Shakespeare Festival
    June 18-Aug. 15, 2021
    Plays are performed beneath summer night skies in the historic Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre on CU Campus.


    Chautauqua Summer Concert Series
    June-September 2021
    Indigo Girls, Keb' Mo', The Jayhawks and more return this year for Chautauqua’s summer series, featuring concerts, silent movies, theater, dance, forums and family events at the foot of the Flatirons.

    Colorado Music Festival
    July 1-Aug. 7, 2021
    This internationally acclaimed festival is held four nights per week for seven weeks at the historic Chautauqua Auditorium, showcasing an orchestra of professional classical musicians from all over the world.

    Bands on the Bricks
    Tentatively Wednesdays, June 9-Aug. 11, 2021
    From oldies to alternative, Bands on the Bricks is Boulder's premier outdoor summer concert series taking place on the bricks of the Pearl Street Mall. 

    Arts in the Park at the Bandshell
    May 22-Sept. 19, 2021
    Dance, theater, opera, hippy bluegrass church and more are all happening as part of Arts in the Park at the Glenn Huntington Bandshell in Boulder’s Civic Area.


    Celebration of Immigrant Heritage Month
    Details about this developing celebration will be announced soon. 

    Colorado Brazil Fest
    June 18-19, 2021
    Two rhythmic days of Brazilian dancing, capoeira, music, food and more at Boulder's Bandshell.

    Boulder International Film Festival
    June 24-27, 2021
    Films and filmmakers from around the world come to Boulder audiences for a four-day celebration of the art of cinema.

    Boulder Comedy Festival
    June 25-27, 2021
    Nationally touring comics featured on Comedy Central, Netflix and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert come together with festival winners and local comedians to create a sea of hilarity outdoors as part of the Dairy Arts Center's Backporch Series.

    Louisville Slugger Independence Day Tournament
    June 30-July 4, 2021
    For more than two decades, this 80-team competitive girls softball tourney has been hosted in Boulder!


    Boulder Creek Festival
    July 16-18, 2021
    Three days of festivities featuring makers, artists and small businesses; family activities; music; food and entertainment — all on the banks of Boulder Creek.

    Louisville Slugger Independence Day Tournament
    June 30-July 4, 2021
    For more than two decades, this 80-team competitive girls softball tourney has been hosted in Boulder!


    Community Roots Art Festival (CRAFt)
    August 1, 2021
    Head to VisionQuest Brewing for one special day of artwork, performances, giveaways and tasty treats highlighting local Black, Indigenous and brown self-identified artists.

    IRONMAN 70.3
    August 7, 2021
    This "half Ironman" takes place at the Boulder Reservoir with a spectacular Rocky Mountain backdrop. The event has been an athlete favorite for over a decade and is one of the fastest IRONMAN events to sell out each year.

    Boulder International Fringe Festival
    August 11-22, 2021
    Celebrating art outside the box, with a series of thought-provoking performances and events.

    Want more? We have barely scratched the surface of all the amazing Boulder summer festivals. See our complete, searchable events calendar.