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Colorado family travel: 10 winter ideas for non-skiers

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 I feel at home in the mountain towns of Colorado. I like to snowboard. But skiing/snowboarding is not the ONLY reason to head up to the mountains this time of year. There are a ton of events that you don’t need equipment to enjoy.

Aspen. The four-day festival called Winterskol will take place January 9-12, 2020. It includes on-mountain activities, film screenings, broomball and fat-bike competitions and a whole lot more! Then come again January 23-26 for the Winter X Games – the biggest non-Olympics snowsports competition anywhere! Not only can you see amazing athletes (Shaun While has been there before – but there are usually well-known artists in concert and most of it is FREE! 

Breckenridge. Art and snow go hand in hand at the International Snow Sculpture Championships January 24-29 (different sets of dates for carving and viewing). For the 30th year, artists from around the world will compete to make a giant block of snow look like the most intricate piece of sculptured art.

Copper Mountain. The Dew Tour comes to Copper February 6-9, 2020. The innovative contest series that showcases athletes’ creativity and style in the disciplines of modified superpipe, slopestyle, and street-style, as well as a team challenge competition. You can enjoy a free front-row seat to all the action as well as free concerts, sponsor village, autograph signings, and more!

DurangoSnowdown, the biggest party of the winter in southwest Colorado has been going on each year since 1979 in Durango. Advertised as “the cure for cabin fever,” January 29 through Feb 1 will be a weekend of music, parties and skiing at nearby Purgatory and Hesperus ski areas. This year’s theme is rock ‘n roll, so dress up as your favorite rock star for the occasion.  

Kidtopia. This is Keystone’s ultimate kid party with the Ripperoo’s Village Parade, bingo and face-painting, Super Snowy Science, tubing, winter movie matinees and the World’s LARGEST snow fort atop Dercum Mountain! 

 Steamboat Springs.  All things celebrating western winter can be experienced at Winter Carnival Feb. 5-9!! Celebrating 107 years of winter with events like ski jumping and skijoring (skiers pulled by horses), as well as a parade (it was such a thrill for the 6-year-old me to get to be in the parade), fireworks and plenty of frivolity, including adults pulled through snow on shovels and skiers racing through flaming hoops. It’s the longest continuously-celebrated winter festival west of the Mississippi River. Also, for something truly unique (and adrenaline-charged), check-out the Bridgestone Winter Driving School or Bumper Cars on Ice at the Howelsen Ice Complex. 

Vail. Free guided snowshoe tour. Meet at the Nature Discovery Center, at the top of Lionshead gondola. Travel by snowshoes on an educational tour through the forests atop Vail Mountain. Learn about winter ecology and animal adaptations as you gaze at majestic alpine views. Please come prepared to spend an hour outside in the winter environment with snow pants, hats, gloves, sunglasses and waterproof boots. Snowshoes are provided. Participants sign up online. Ages 10 and up, FREE. (featured image). Also, the Burton U.S. Open is back at Vail February 24-29. The event is FREE to view and you will be able to see Olympians truly catch some air!

Winter Park. On January 18, enjoy spectacular slopeside fireworks at the free Winter Park Family Fest. Gather around the bonfire at the base for front-row views of the firework display following the sunset. Satisfy your sweet tooth at the s’mores bar, enter to win great giveaways, & dance to the music with their DJ.

*We will have more details on Spring Break concerts and last day festivities later this spring. 

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