It’s Labor Day weekend and the balloons are ready for take-off, the art is bursting off the canvas and there just might be a tractor pull within driving distance of your home.
HIGH-FLYING FUN: The Colorado Balloon Classic begins Saturday and runs through Monday. The concessions open at 6 a.m., the hot air balloons begin mass ascension at 7 a.m., music starts at 8 a.m. If you can’t make it that early, head out later in the day. Booths and activities begin around 4 p.m., and the beautiful Balloon-Glo lights up the park at 8 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Events are in Memorial Park, at the corner of Pikes Peak Avenue and Union Boulevard, and it’s free; 471-4833 or www.balloonclassic.com. ARTS AND CRAFTS: Another Labor Day weekend tradition continues in Manitou Springs at the Commonwheel Labor Day Art Festival. There will be a caboodle of art, crafts, music, entertainment, activities for kids, food and more. Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday-Monday in Memorial Park, Manitou Springs. It’s free; 577-7700. SMALL TOWNS, BACK ROADS: If you’re in Manitou parts on Sunday, pop by the art gallery L.I.W. Cargo. A new show, “Small Towns and Back Roads,” paintings by Nancy Rynes, is up. There’s a free opening reception 6-8 p.m. It’s at 713 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs; 685-0452. BACK IN TIME: Over at Rock Ledge Ranch, you can hop in the ol’ time machine and go back for an Old Fashioned Labor Day. Activities include an 1880s baseball game and more, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday. Admission is $2-$6/free kids 5 and younger. It’s by the Garden of the Gods entrance off 30th Street; 578-6777. SEEING STARS: Wish upon a star at the Colorado Springs Astronomical Society’s public viewing session 7:30-11 p.m. Friday. Things get going in Palmer Park, at the intersection of Academy Boulevard and Maizeland Road. It’s free; 651-8476. FOUNTAIN IN FALL: Fountain also gets into the three-day-weekend frame of mind. The little town that could will hold a Fall Festival on Monday. There’s a parade at 9 a.m., then entertainment, games, activities for kids, a tractor pull, crafts and food in downtown Fountain and at Metcalfe Park. All free; 382-3190. CRUISIN’: Love cars? Love cruising? Love Stockers Cruise Nights, a free car show running 4-8 p.m. Saturday. It’s at the Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center, 1805 N. 30th St.; 596-6067.