Grand Valley Days returns to Parachute for 115th rodeo celebration

A rider participates in a mutton busting event during Grand Valley Days in Parachute in 2022.

The town of Parachute readies itself for a weekend of celebration, tradition and community spirit starting this Friday. From Aug. 18-20, the much-anticipated Grand Valley Days will take center stage, bringing with it a whirlwind of activities, music and nostalgia.

With a legacy spanning 115 years, Grand Valley Days is not just an event; it’s a testament to the town’s deep-rooted traditions and enduring community spirit. This year, the event promises an intriguing mix of the past and the present, with the theme, “Derby Days.” Attendees are encouraged to don Kentucky Derby-inspired outfits.

Festivities will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday at Cottonwood Park, 100 La Plata Circle, Parachute. Event-goers can expect a number of traditional games like stick horse races, tug-of-war and the always hilarious three-legged race. As the sun sets, live bands will take the stage to serenade attendees with melodies that echo through the night.

One of the musical highlights promises to be Rick Mancuso and the Fyve Star Band. Originating from Grand Junction, the band is renowned for their vibrant performances, covering a mix of country and rock hits from the 1960s to the 1990s. After their performance last year, Mancuso expressed his anticipation for this year’s gig.

 “This band loves what we do. As long as we have the opportunity to perform, we are going to put our hearts into the music that we play,” he said. “We are excited to get the chance to play in front of the community that we hold so dear to our hearts.”

Rodeo participants rope a calf during Grand Valley Days in Parachute in 2022.

A Colorado native who has attended Grand Valley Days as a participant in years past, Mancuso is no rookie when it comes to the rodeo scene, competing in bull riding for nine years of his life.

Saturday’s schedule is packed, featuring the “Derby Days” parade starting at 10 a.m. As the parade winds down, the Main Event Rodeo will kick off, showcasing traditional events like bull riding, calf roping and mutton busting. The sheer adrenaline and excitement of the rodeo are bound to leave attendees on the edge of their seats.

“It really is an event like no other in this town,” Grand Valley Park Association President Amy Beasley said. “We have an excellent group of people who come together every year to make this possible and we also couldn’t be more appreciative to the town of Parachute for helping make all this possible.”

For more information regarding Grand Valley Days, visit

Friday, Aug. 18 

5 p.m.
Sign up for all Family Games
At Cottonwood Park

6 p.m.
Let the games begin!
At Cottonwood Park

  • Stick Horse Races
  • Tug of War
  • 3 Legged Race and more!
  • Prizes to winners of each division

8 p.m.
Free Music in the Park
At Cottonwood Park

  • Featuring The Basement Brothers
  • Food & Drink Vendors on site
Saturday, Aug. 19

7-10 a.m.
Pancake Breakfast
At Grand Valley Methodist Church

10 a.m.
“Derby Days” Parade
Kentucky Derby style Big Hats, and Big Bucks.

After the Parade
At the lawn of the Center for Family Learning

  • Live music by Alpine Echo
  • Food and merchandise vendors at the Early Learning Center
  • BBQ Benefiting Brent’s Place

4 p.m.
Slack for timed events for the rodeo

At the Rodeo Grounds next to Cottonwood Park

6 p.m.
Sign Up for Mutton Busting on site

7 p.m.
Main Event Rodeo

  • Professional Announcer: Brandon Edwards and W/A Rodeo Co.
  • Mutton Busting
  • Bronc Riding
  • Calf Roping
  • Bull Riding
  • Barrel Racing and more!
  • 3rd Annual Calf Dressing

Immediately following the rodeo:
Live Music
By Rick Mancuso and the Fyve Star Band

Sunday, Aug. 20

1-3 p.m.
Sunday Pie & Ice Cream Social
At the Battlement Mesa Historic School House

  • Live Dixieland music by Noodle Soup

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