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September 12th, 2022

Fall Festivals + Fall Foliage = Fabulous

As Telluride’s summer transitions into autumn, the luscious greens of summer give way to the bright yellows, oranges and reds of fall and the summertime hustle and bustle of town slows. In September and October, it’s the same beautiful box canyon, just a little more serene. Likewise, the rollicking festivals of summer give way to a handful of niche fall festivals: vibrant and fascinating still, but also unique and more intimate. The result is truly fabulous.

Want to open your mind while taking in the breathtaking beauty of fall in the San Juan Mountains? Here is our list of what’s unmissable come Gold Season in Telluride.

Autumn Classic, September 23-25

Formerly Cars and Colors, this event has evolved to include excellence in craftsmanship and engineering, promising to appeal to enthusiasts of automobiles, motorcycles, aircraft and much more. Expect high-end restorations, vintage and exotic vehicles, family-friendly attractions and live music, all against a backdrop of stunning fall foliage.

Original Thinkers, September 29-October 2

Ready to have your mind blown? This intriguing festival promises a unique blend of art, ideas and film, offering diverse and select programming with an emphasis on innovative storytelling. The brainchild of filmmaker and cultural entrepreneur David Holbrooke, Original Thinkers brings together a collective of creators, innovators and doers with one aim: providing a rich and meaningful experience for audience members. Fasten your seatbelts.

Horror Show, October 14-16

It isn’t just that it’s Colorado’s first and longest-running horror film festival, or that its Instagram feed sometimes gives us sweaty palms, or even that it was named one of the coolest film festivals by MovieMakermagazine. No, what makes this dynamic fest one of our faves is its passionate fans. They descend on our little mountain town each fall for a mix of horror, suspense, thrillers, dark fantasy, sci-fi and dark comedy. Watching their enthusiasm makes us feel all warm and fuzzy, until the theater lights go down and our spines begin to tingle.

Leaf-peeping, September & October

Turns out Mother Nature is a festivarian too, throwing a festival for the eyes every fall. Your options for viewing the foliage in and around Telluride are varied. Hike, bike or jeep along an old mining road, gain some altitude, find a vantage point and gaze to your heart’s content. Jump on the free Gondola and get a bird’s eye view as you are whisked between Telluride and Mountain Village. Or, grab a table at Allred’s, Altezza at the Peaks, The View Bar & Grill at the Mountain Lodge or street-side at the New Sheridan Chop House for scrumptious autumnal views that match the scrumptious food.

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