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Spend the day

May 18, 2013
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photo - Lenora Dana and her son, Kyle, 13, get doused by Paige at The Colorado Renaissance Festival Sunday, July 15, 2012. Both were warned that they might get a little wet when Paige cooled herself off after taking part in the festival's Royal Procession. Photo by Mark Reis, The Gazette
Lenora Dana and her son, Kyle, 13, get doused by Paige at The Colorado Renaissance Festival Sunday, July 15, 2012. Both were warned that they might get a little wet when Paige cooled herself off after taking part in the festival's Royal Procession. Photo by Mark Reis, The Gazette 

Victor and Cripple Creek

A stunning drive in the fall, the sights are beautiful in any season. Victor has several museums and gold panning, and the nearby mine hosts regular tours starting Memorial Day. Cripple Creek offers more than just casinos. The town has historical buildings, museums and wandering donkeys. Donkey Derby Days are set for June 29-30. visitcripplecreek.com

 

Boulder

This college town, just west of Denver, boasts a mix of activities and attractions to suit any tastes. Hike around Chautauqua Park for close-up views of the famous Flatirons. Rent a bicycle and go for a ride on the University of Colorado campus. Explore local breweries and wineries. Celestial Seasonings offers tours of its tea production plant. bouldercolorado.gov

 

Colorado Renaissance Festival

Celebrating its 37th season, the festival comes to life with a colorful cast of characters, live music and stage shows. Jousting and turkey legs are perennial favorites at the festival, which is open weekends June 15-Aug. 4. There are games and other activities for kids and adults. Each weekend has a different theme. coloradorenaissance.com

 

Rocky Mountain National Park

Although better suited to a long weekend or more, the park is worth a quick trip if that is the only way to give visiting friends or family a big taste of Colorado. Trail Ridge Road is a destination in itself, with miles and miles of picturesque views. There are also plenty of diversions in Estes Park and the surrounding area. nps.gov/romo

 

Canon City

This community less than an hour's drive from Colorado Springs has a lot to offer those who enjoy the outdoors. Full-day and half-day rafting trips are available from several companies. If rock climbing is more your speed, nearby Shelf Road has nearly 1,000 routes. If recreation isn't your style, The Winery at Holy Cross Abbey is worth a stop. canoncitycolorado.com

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