Looking for a last minute Labor Day weekend adventure? Steamboat Springs is a great destination to put on your list. From free concerts, farmers market, events on the mountain and downtown, to the normal summer fun; Steamboat will have you enjoying all that make for a perfect get-away weekend.
Kick off the weekend by strolling around downtown on Friday evening. An abundance of local shops and restaurants await you for delicious cuisine of all types. Unique shops and art galleries will entice your eyes for a peek. If strolling during the happy hour time frame (usually 4-6ish), enjoy a discounted beverage and small bites throughout mainstreet or on the river at Yampa Street. Many places will have free live music.
On Saturday, consider renting a bike to cruise along the Yampa River Core Trail. Stop at the lovely Yampa River Botanic Gardens for a beautiful stroll among the flowers, where free yoga also takes place at 9 a.m. Continue biking along the trail to the Farmers Market downtown on Yampa and 7th Street from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nearly 75 vendors will have food, art and unique Colorado treasures.
Spend the afternoon hiking at one of the many hiking spots around town. Spring Creek, Fish Creek Falls and Emerald Mountain trails are all close to downtown. Splash around at the Steamboat Ski area beach at the base of the ski area during the afternoon or evening hours. Catch a bite for dinner at Timber and Torch or Slopeside Grill. Then, enjoy a free movie on the big screen in Gondola Square (starts at dark – 8:15ish). You may see kiddos in their pajamas while other folks bring chairs and blankets to relax and wind down.
Sunday is a day to explore. Take a scenic drive up to Steamboat Lake or Stagecoach State Park. Both have a swimming beach and boat marina. Rentals and life jackets are available. My favorite water sport is paddle boarding or canoeing around the lake. Kids (and adults) will love the sand and swimming beach. The friendly staff will be able to help direct you to hiking or fishing spots as well.
Get your western on by attending the Rocky Mountain Bull Bash on Sunday evening at the Rodeo Arena off of 5th street downtown. Watch some of the top professional bull riders in the world try to ride the rankest bulls, with over 40 cowboys competing for prize money. This is an open seating, general admission event. Tickets can be picked up at the event entrance to Romick Arena at the rodeo grounds. Tickets are $25 ages 6 and up, kids 5 years old and under are free.
Spend Monday (Labor Day) at your leisure before wrapping up the weekend. Tube the Yampa River or try another hike in the beautiful Steamboat mountains. For more information on lodging and things to do, visit www.steamboat.net
Photo: View from Hahns Peak looking out at Steamboat Lake State Park.