Mark your calendar: Rifle events 2017 |

Mark your calendar: Rifle events 2017

I always tell people that my favorite holiday is Christmas Eve. I like the feeling of anticipation; you know something great is coming, but it’s not here just yet. You get to savor the time it takes for truly wonderful things to develop. Anticipation helps me to appreciate and live in the moment.

So to all those people out there who like having something to look forward to, allow me to indulge you. Below are the super major all-around awesome Rifle events coming to you in 2017.

Rifle Rendezvous, May 19-21

Rifle Rendezvous has been going for over 20 years, so hopefully you’ve gotten a chance to attend at least one! The festival ties the heritage of the area with all sorts of family fun. Events include a carnival, bull riding competition, car show, dancing and live music, and many, many activities in between. Last year the car show took place on a closed block of Third Street that included live music. Some folks were literally dancing in the street. If that’s not fun, I don’t know what is.

Lots of details are still in the works, but luckily there’s a website for that:

Garfield County Fair, July 31 though August 6

The Garfield County Fair is a week of classic western entertainment you’d expect out of a city called Rifle. This year’s theme is Stars, Stripes, and Fair Delights. It was at the fair where I saw my first ever demolition derby, and I totally came to understand why it’s so popular. I live near the fairgrounds and enjoy hearing the sounds of merriment carry to my house all week (the concert especially). The main attractions of the fair are scheduled as follows:

Monday — Family Rodeo

Tuesday — Youth Rodeo

Wednesday — PRCA Xtreme Bulls

Thursday — PRCA ProRodeo

Friday — Concert, headlined by Scotty McCreery!

Saturday — Parade, Summer of Thunder Car Show, and Demolition Derby

Sunday — Motor Sport Show

They, too, have a website,, where you can learn all you ever wanted to know.

Western Adventure Weekend, September 22-24

The name of this event, which held its inaugural last year, might require a little explanation. Firstly, Rifle is unique. You know it, I know it, but not everyone visiting Rifle has the chance to really experience it. Our town is poised at an interesting juncture. We’re not alpine, and we’re not exactly desert, we’re not old-time west nor are we modern, we’re a little too big to be a small town and far too small to be a proper city, we like sports and arts and all types of culture. As my supervisor likes to say, we’re the everything bagel; Rifle is the kind of place that allows a person to truly embrace the things that interest them without the fear of not fitting in, because here we’re all a little different. Rifle allows for real western adventure (#RealWesternAdventure).

This is the background behind the concept of Western Adventure Weekend. We anticipate the main features in the fall to be a block party on a shutdown street in the downtown, a craft/art fair, a major concert, a bike race, an all-sports swap meet, a gun show, and many other smaller events that will be no less fun. All these elements add up to help define the way of life in Rifle. We are so rich in opportunities for western adventure that naturally we want to celebrate it, so please keep an eye out for more information.

Hometown Holiday, December 1-3

If I’m being honest, this is my favorite event. This weekend celebration centers on everything we love in the last month of the year. Last year included an amazing race, scavenger hunt, craft fair, Santa for the kids, the Parade of Lights, sleigh rides, bonfire, a screening of the Polar Express, and plenty of other smaller side activities. All activities are free to attend. Hometown Holiday is the embodiment of community spirit and togetherness. Again, this is another event that will have more available information the closer we get.

On top of all of these fun major events, we of course have many smaller or recurring events, too. I plan to share some more details on those in an article next month.

So mark your calendars, save your pennies, and get excited about the end of winter. There’s a lot of fun to be had right here in Rifle.

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