34th annual ColorFest kicks off Friday

PREVIEW photo/Randi Pierce

By Hilarie Strong
Special to The PREVIEW
The morning chill of fall and September are here. This means it’s time for ColorFest in Pagosa Springs, Sept. 20-22. Are you ready?
The festivities for the ColorFest 2019 weekend begin on Friday, Sept. 20, at 6 p.m. in the athletic field in Town Park with the popular Passport to Pagosa Wine and Food Festival. Local restaurants will tempt your taste buds with their flavorful creations and attendees will be invited to vote for their favorite. The “favorite” will receive the People’s Choice Award. Golden Whisk Awards for Most Flavorful, Original and Best Sweet will also be given out, as will an award for the Best Decorated Station.
We have more restaurants than ever before, 16 in all, and many are Pagosa favorites and some new to the event. Attendees will also have the opportunity to sample a wide array of wines from around the world, sipping from this year’s signature wine glass. The evening’s entertainment will be provided by the Robin Davis Duo. This event always sells out, so grab your tickets now.
On Saturday, Sept. 21, at approximately 8 a.m., around 30 balloons will ascend over downtown Pagosa Springs, launching from the Hot Springs Boulevard area and filling the sky with bright colors and bringing a sense of wonderment as they float. If you’ve never experienced a balloon rally, then you’re in for a treat.
As the balloons ascend, the 5K ColorFest Color Run will take place beginning at 8 a.m. in Town Park. This annual event supports Rise Above Violence, a local nonprofit agency dedicated to the elimination of domestic abuse. Registration for the run/walk is at www.riseaboveviolence.org.
During that time, you can also have a wonderful breakfast and incredible view of all the festivities at the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership’s (GGP) Breakfast with Balloons, from 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. in Centennial Park. Tickets for the breakfast can be purchased on the GGP website at www.pagosagreen.org or at the Chamber.
The day’s festivities continue with the Bands and Brews Festival beginning at 4 p.m. The event will kick off with the heat of Lisa Saunders, who returns to Pagosa after her performances in Mexico. She will be accompanied by the Caborado Band from Cabo San Lucas. You thought Saunders was rockin’ before — wait until you hear her new group and the high-octane entertainment.
Then a New Mexico country favorite, gaining popularity here in Colorado and in Texas, is Tylor Brandon, taking the stage at 6:30 p.m. If you want to get some dancing in, this is the event to burn up some energy. Microbreweries from Colorado and northern New Mexico will be serving up their top brews. This year’s lineup will feature several additional breweries with new, exciting quaffs that will entice you. Enjoy our local breweries, as well as regional favorites.
You will be able to select from an array of food vendors. Fun for the kids includes the Nerf Battle Zone and face painting. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $25 for the beer tasting, which includes your souvenir glass. Wine by the glass will also be available for a cash price. The evening will come to an end with a “glow show” with several balloons lighting up the park at dusk.
Sunday, Sept. 22, will bring spectators another round of hot air balloons as the pilots once again fill the skies. Beginning at approximately 8 a.m., get your cameras ready as the balloons display spectacular color against the mountains and reflections in the lake. This mass ascension will take place in the uptown area. Views can be seen from all over the area. Make sure to grab your friends and enjoy this beautiful spectacle.
There is plenty of time to enjoy all that Pagosa Springs has to offer. Take friends out for breakfast after the mass ascensions, shopping for a unique item or a soak in the springs.
While not included in the weekend activities, should you arrive before Friday, look at attending the Pagosa Springs Arts Council’s Mosaic Project Extravaganza on Thursday evening, Sept. 19, at the new Pagosa Springs Arts Council building on Navajo Trail Drive. This colorful display of 6-inch mosaic tiles demonstrates the talent in this community from professional, amateur and “wanna be” artists. A festive evening of heavy hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar and live music enhances the purchase of your art tile. Tickets are available at the Chamber or online at www.ps-artscouncil.org for $35 and this includes your random tile. The mosaic will be on display at Town Hall and the Pagosa Springs Medical Center prior to Sept. 19.
Come celebrate the 34th annual ColorFest in Pagosa Springs. You can purchase tickets for this event online at www.pagosachamber.com/Colorfest/.

This story was posted on September 19, 2019.