The June 21 summer solstice might have snuck up on us (the rainy season just won’t let go this year), but that only enhances our primal desire to dance—literally and figuratively—in celebration of the sun. Here are five ways to welcome the official start to summer in and around the Mile High City.
Head to Denver’s largest city park for a Swedish-style gathering that celebrates the solstice. The event, put on by Yoga in the Park and Swede Wellness, will start with a 60-minute meditation and all-levels yoga practice, followed by a community potluck (organizers will provide Swedish snacks). Bring a snack of your choice, your yoga mat, a blanket, and your child (including the four-legged kind); this event is family- and pet-friendly. 20th Ave. and York St.; June 22 at 10 a.m.
This Uptown mainstay is throwing a party you won’t want to miss. Executive chef Thach Tran will prepare a whole-pig roast, which you can enjoy with a variety of sweet spiked iced teas. You’ll be able to relax on the all-new patio and listen to Allman Brothers tribute band All Night Train, all while dreaming about your big summer plans. 501 E. 17th Ave.; June 21 from 6 to 9 p.m.
Festival of the Sun Celebration at Dos Luces
While the northern hemisphere celebrates the longest day of the year, our friends south of the border celebrate their shortest day of the year. The Inti Raymi, or Festival of the Sun, is an Incan tradition that pays tribute to the sun god and is still celebrated today. Dos Luces Brewery, which specializes in corn- and agave-based beers, is commemorating the day with food from Azucar Bakery, speakers from the Peruvian consulate, and an extra-special new brew: the barrel-aged Túpac Amaru III with sour cherries. 1236 S. Broadway; June 22 at noon
Commence the new season the best way Coloradans know how: by breaking a sweat and then cooling down with a cold one. Head to Green Spaces, a coworking joint in Five Points, for a 45-minute energizing vinyasa flow; afterward, skip next door to 10 Barrel Brewing, where you’ll find more than 20 beers on tap. Yogis get their first beer free. 2590 Walnut St.; June 19 at 5:15 p.m.
Across the Front Range
This lush three-day fest will have tons of traditional activities, such as a midsummer pole-raising ceremony, Nordic theatre, and performances by the Swedish Folk Dance Club of Denver. With Scandinavian food outfitters such as Andy’s Kitchen and Scandy Sweets and a beer garden stocked with Redstone Meadery’s Mountain Honey Wine, you’re bound to have enough fun to last you for the next 365 days. Bond Park, Estes Park; June 21–23; check schedule for details
Start the season at this Latin-America-themed celebration, which includes plenty of beer (Cerveza Patagonia), nosh (chimichurri burgers), and alpacas (yes, you read that right). In an effort to support the National Forest Foundation, for every case of Cerveza Patagonia sold, Budweiser will plant a seedling, and the first 50 attendees will receive a little tree of their own. Budweiser Beer Garden, Fort Collins; June 21 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
This al fresco patio party is a classic in the making. Now in its second year, you can expect a deep menu of tasty craft brews, including the summery Raspberry Provincial sour, or the Hella Helles lager. The tunes of Fort Collins-based Fat Stallion and the J.W. Schuller Band will be the soundtrack to your first summer day. For extra sunny vibes, grab a bite from Shuck Brothers, who will be selling their delicious seafood, including fresh, raw oysters and Maine lobster rolls. 1900 E Lincoln Ave Unit B, Fort Collins; June 21 from 4 to 10 p.m.