5 Unique Summer Festivals and Fairs in Denver

If you are tired of the same old cotton-candy-ferris-wheel-and-popcorn-type fairs every summer, we’ve rounded up a few of the most unique fairs and festivals happening in the Denver area that will keep the whole family happy. And we’re pretty sure that you won’t find cotton candy at any them.

2014 Denver Beer Olympics
Saturday, July 26, 10am
Civic Center Park, 100 W. 14th Ave Pkwy., Denver, CO

Sure, this event sounds like something straight out of Animal House, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The 2014 Denver Beer Olympics is drinking with a purpose, as all proceeds will go to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, an awesome non-profit that supports research in combatting blood cancers.

To participate in the Olympics, you must have a team of two guys and two girls and be ready to play some fun games such as Beer Pong, Hammerschlagen, Beersbee, and Das Boot. The price is $60 for each participant and this includes beer, participation in the Olympics and a t-shirt. And the stakes are high – first place prize is 4 tickets to the Great American Beer Festival on Saturday Oct. 4, 2014!

30th Annual Rocky Mountain Book and Paper Fair
August 1, 2-9pm, August 2, 10am-5pm
Denver Mart 451 E. 58th, Denver, CO

If you’re the type of person who loves spending hours in libraries and used book stores, then this is the fair is for you. No cheesy carnival music, no deep-fried smell seeping into your clothes, just aisles of rare books, vintage postcards, outdated maps and old photos of people you don’t know. Hundreds of vendors will be present in what is the country’s largest book and paper fair. Be sure to bring the whole family as there is something for all ages and genre preferences.

Cheesman Park Art Fest
July 27th and 28th
Southside of Cheesman Park

Not many know the macabre history of Cheesman Park, its beginnings as a cemetery, the scandal that surrounded it when moving the dead bodies, and finally its renovation into one of Denver’s most loved parks. Some say the park itself is haunted, so if you dare come, take a stroll through it for the Cheesman Park Art Fest. Works from over a hundred local and national artists will be on display, and while you may not see any ghosts or zombies, you’re sure to find a few new water painting for your living room.

CatFest
Saturday, July 19, 11am to 3pm
2080 S. Quebec St., Denver, CO

This pet-friendly fest brought to you by the Dumb Friends League has everything you need for your furry, four-legged friend. Attend one of the training demonstrations or a health and well-being chat to get tips on taking care of your pet. If you’re in the market for a cat, there will be kittens and cats of all sizes and breeds for adoption, as well as a Meow Market with all the cat paraphernalia you’ll be able to stand.

Final Friday Food Truck Fiesta
Friday, June 27, 6pm – 10pm
2830 Larimer St., Denver, CO

There really is no finer combination than food trucks and fashion. And you’re sure to only find this strange marriage in the capital of cool, the RiNo district in Denver. Come down next Friday to taste some mobile specialities from well-known Denver food trucks like Crock Spot, Street Eats 5280, The Orange Crunch, and Sweet ‘Ness Cupcakes. While you munch on some goodies, get your shop on at the Denver Fashion Truck! All proceeds from this event will go to Cycles for Student Success program, which awards bicycles to students at Gilpin Montessori Public School and Whittier ECE-8 for excellence in school attendance, as well as other programs including Shots for Tots and Teens and the Peaceful Schools program.