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Downtown summer events

May 26, 2010

Fort Collins has bragging rights when it comes to the kind of entertainment it hosts in its downtown district. This summer there is a lunch hour concert series in Oak Street Plaza, a vintage car show, brewer's festival, a series of gallery walks, and of course, the hugely popular NewWestFest.

Heidi and the Rhythm Rollers will play at Nelson's Old Town Car Show on Sunday, June 12.

Sandals, shorts, and sunscreen

It's summertime -- time for kicking back and enjoying the outdoors. Colorado State University students, faculty, staff, conferees, and visitors don't have to go far to find great outdoor entertainment.

There are a number of events taking place in downtown Fort Collins, located only a few minutes from campus.

Noontime Notes Concert Series

The Noontime Notes Concert Series begins Tuesday, June 1 and continues Tuesdays through Aug. 17. Each concert takes places from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Think open spaces, a wonderful, relaxed environment, and quality musicians.

These lunch hour concerts provide a peaceful lunch escape right in historic downtown. Live, intimate music - featuring styles such as Latin, Fold, Bluegrass, and Jazz - is performed by local Fort Collins trios and quartets.  The concerts are free and open to the public. 

Nelson's Old Town Car Show

Nelsen's Old Town Car Show will be held at Old Town Square, Mountain Avenue, and Walnut Street on Sunday, June 12 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event, free to spectators, features hundreds of great hot-rods, vintage cars and classic trucks.

The variety of cars and trucks will include custom cars, street rods, fat fender street rods, muscle cars, classic motorcycles, classic cars and classic trucks.

Live music will fill Old Town Square as people enjoy the show and dine on surrounding restaurant patios. This year’s show will host:

Colorado Brewer's Festival

The 21st Annual Colorado Brewer’s Festival takes place in Historic Downtown on Saturday, June 26 and Sunday, June 27. The festival features over 50 Colorado beers, delicious food, Colorado music and fun.  

Some of the host breweries are: Anheuser-Busch, Big Horn Brewery/CB & Potts, Coopersmith's Pub & Brewing, New Belgium Brewing Co., Fort Collins Brewery, and Odell's Brewing.

Image by CSU Photography.

Independence Day!

On Independence Day, July 4, the whole family is welcome to come celebrate America's birthday downtown in Old Town Square between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. The event includes live music, food vendors, beer garden, and patriotic fun.

This event is free and open to the public, so bring your lawn chairs, your sunscreen and enjoy the sunshine on July 4th Downtown. Later in the evening, enjoy music and fireworks at City Park.

A Fort Collins Jazz experience

A Fort Collins Jazz Experience takes places Thursday, July 8 through Sunday, July 10. 

The Downtown Business Association and downtown businesses have teamed up to bring the highest quality jazz music and its history to Fort Collins.  Enjoy:

  • Two stages of free continuous jazz jams from local and regional musicians
  • Jazz art
  • Educational sessions for students
  • Special ticketed national headliner concerts

Details, prices, and locations vary based on each event. 

Bohemian Nights/NewWestFest

Pop R & B icons, Earth, Wind, and Fire, are the headline act on Saturday, Aug. 21 at Bohemian Nights. Image from

Approximately 137 years ago Fort Collins was established along the banks of the Cache la Poudre River and this August, the community will celebrate this birthday with Northern Colorado’s largest festival, Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest, a three-day music program, free and open to the public.

This year’s music headliner lineup is a diverse offering of genres, energy and performance styles. The Colorado and nationally acclaimed, Alternative Rock band, The Flobots, will perform Friday, Aug. 20 on the Linden Street Stage. 

Headlining Saturday, Aug. 21, on the Mountain Avenue main stage will be Pop/R&B icons Earth, Wind & Fire, while the legendary Earl Scruggs & Friends will close the weekend on the Mountain Avenue main stage, Sunday, Aug. 22, with a Bluegrass performance that a true fan should not miss. 

Dates/times for Bohemian Nights
  • Friday, Aug. 20, Kickoff concert, 7-9 p.m. in Old Town Square
  • Saturday, Aug. 21, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. with evening concerts until 10 p.m.
  • Sunday, Aug. 22, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
What Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest will showcase
  • Over 300 arts, crafts, and food booths
  • Kids’ area
  • A children's carnival
  • Two beer gardens
  • Eight stages of continuous entertainment highlighting Northern Colorado and the Front Range’s wonderfully talented artists

See parking map.

Overview of concerts, festivals, gallery walks

  •   June 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 - Noontime Notes Concert Series
  •   June 4 - First Friday Gallery Walk
  •   June 12 - Nelson's Old Town Car Show
  •   June 12 & 13 - Taste of Fort Collins
  •   June 19 - French Nest Open-Air Market
  •   June 26 & 27 - 21st Annual Colorado Brewer's Festival
  •   July 2 - First Friday Gallery Walk
  •   July 4 - 4th of July Downtown
  •   July 6, 13, 20, 27 - Noontime Notes Concert Series
  •   July 8, 9, 10 - A Fort Collins Jazz Experience
  •   July 17 - French Nest Open-Air Market
  •   Aug. 3, 10 - Noontime Notes Concert Series
  •   Aug. 6 - First Friday Gallery Walk
  •   Aug. 21 & 22 - Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest
  •   Aug. 21 - French Nest Open-Air Market

See the complete city of Fort Collins special events listing. 

Contact: Fort Collins Downtown Business Association
Phone: (970) 484-6500