Labor Day originated in the late 19th century to honor American workers and the labor movement amid long workdays and harsh conditions. The first Labor Day parade was held in New York City on September 5, 1882, and the holiday gained federal recognition in 1894 under President Grover Cleveland. Over the years, Labor Day has evolved from celebrating workers’ rights to a day of rest, leisure, and retail sales, marking the unofficial end of summer.
On Labor Day, people engage in activities ranging from leisurely pursuits to family gatherings. Many take advantage of the long weekend to go on a short vacation or participate in outdoor activities like hiking, barbecuing, or going to the mountains.
If you are sticking around the Pikes Peak region for the holiday, here are some fun things to do for Labor Day:
The Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift-Off is an annual hot air balloon festival held over Labor Day weekend, a tradition since the late 1970s. As one of the largest events of its kind in the U.S., it attracts thousands of spectators to witness dozens of vibrant hot air balloons fill the sky. The festival has evolved to include activities beyond balloon launches, such as skydiving demos, wakeboarding, live music and evening “balloon glows,” where tethered balloons are illuminated from within. This community event marks the end of summer and offers diverse activities for all ages.
Location: Memorial Park, Colorado Springs, 1605 E. Pikes Peak Ave, Colorado Springs, CO
Commonwheel Artists Labor Day Art Festival is an annual event in Manitou Springs, Colorado, near Colorado Springs. Since its inception in 1974, the festival has aimed to celebrate and showcase a variety of art forms, including painting, sculpture, photography, jewelry, and more. Organized by the Commonwheel Artists Co-op, this event has a community-centered ethos, allowing local and regional artists to present their works to the public. Over the years, the festival has evolved into a much-anticipated event that attracts thousands of visitors yearly. In addition to art displays, the festival often features live music, food vendors, and interactive art activities for children, making it a family-friendly occasion. Its long-standing tradition and commitment to artistic excellence make the Commonwheel Artists Labor Day Art Festival a significant cultural highlight in the Colorado Springs area.
The Orangetheory 5K at Labor Day Lift-Off is a specific event in the broader Colorado Springs Labor Day Lift-Off festival. Orangetheory Fitness sponsors this 5K race on Sunday, September 3rd, before the balloon launch. The race allows participants to engage in a healthy and fun activity while enjoying the breathtaking backdrop of hot air balloons ascending into the Colorado Springs sky. The event attracts diverse people, from fitness enthusiasts to families looking for a unique Labor Day experience. Participation often comes with race-themed merchandise; some participants even dress in festive attire. The Orangetheory 5K offers a different way to enjoy the Labor Day Lift-Off and is a popular addition to the festival’s lineup of activities.
The tradition of playing vintage baseball on Labor Day at Historic Rock Ledge Ranch in Colorado Springs is a unique way to celebrate the holiday while stepping back in time. The event aims to recreate the experience of baseball as it was played in the 19th century, complete with period-appropriate uniforms, equipment, and rules. Participants often use terminology from the era, and the setting at Historic Rock Ledge Ranch provides a picturesque and historically accurate backdrop for the games. This family-friendly event is part of the ranch’s larger mission to educate the public about the history and culture of the Pikes Peak region. Over the years, the vintage baseball game has become a staple of Labor Day celebrations in Colorado Springs, drawing locals and tourists interested in history, baseball, or simply looking for a unique way to spend the holiday.
The Colorado State Fair, a cherished tradition dating back to 1869, has long been a staple of Labor Day weekend festivities. Originally started in Denver before finding its permanent home in Pueblo in 1886, the fair has grown to be a monumental celebration of Colorado’s rich agricultural heritage, diverse culture, and vibrant community. Attending the fair on Labor Day has become a rite of passage for many Coloradans who look forward to the vast array of attractions—from live concerts and rodeos to delicious food and carnival rides. Open from 11 AM to 11 PM on Labor Day, the fair offers the perfect day-long escape to mark the end of summer. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, spending Labor Day at the Colorado State Fair is a tradition you won’t want to miss!
Location: Colorado State Fairgrounds 1001 Beulah Ave. Pueblo, CO 81004
Motorcycle enthusiasts looking for an exhilarating way to spend their Labor Day weekend should consider this meticulously planned ride. Sponsored by the Never Dead Riders, this ride kicks off at 10:00 AM at Phillips 66 Monument, and the ride promises a thrilling journey through some of Colorado’s most scenic landscapes.
Day 1 involves cruising through picturesque locales like Evergreen, Winter Park, and Granby, ending with a refreshing beer in Walden before heading to Steamboat Springs.
Day 2 offers a continuation of the adventure, with a ride along Hwy 131 leading into Glenwood Springs, and then up through Aspen and over Independence Pass. Along the way to Buena Vista, riders will traverse Trout Creek Pass and Wilkerson Pass, offering excitement and opportunities for lunch and refreshments. It’s not just a ride; it’s an experience, combining the freedom of the open road with the beauty of Colorado’s natural landscapes.
Reservations are required and can be made on the Never Dead Riders website:
Looking for a perfect blend of fitness and fun this Labor Day? Don’t miss the annual Labor Day Workout & BBQ hosted by Nexus Community Fitness on Monday, September 4th. Kickstart your day with an energizing workout from 11am to 12pm. Whether you’re a fitness enthusiast or a beginner, this workout session has something for everyone. After you’ve broken a sweat, reward yourself with a scrumptious BBQ from 12pm to 2pm. They will serve hotdogs, hamburgers, and an array of sides, including a veggie tray, chips, and potato salad. Vegetarian? No worries, veggie burgers are also on the menu! So everyone is welcome whether you’re here for the workout, the food, or both. Celebrate Labor Day with great exercise and great food!
Elevate your Labor Day weekend to new heights with the “Top Of The World Labor Day Brunch at Sentinel Point” on Sunday, September 3, 2023. Starting at 9:30 AM at the Safeway Parking Lot on 3275 W. Colorado Avenue, we’ll carpool to the trailhead for an adventurous day ahead. This challenging 8+ mile out-and-back trail features a 2,500 ft elevation gain, a river, waterfall, and boulders, offering extraordinary vistas. It’s not for the faint of heart; they plan to summit this beast!
Before setting off, pack water, a light jacket, boots, water shoes, sunscreen, sunglasses, and some snacks or drinks to share. We’ll have opportunities for socializing, eating, and taking photos at various scenic spots. Animals are allowed but not recommended due to the trail’s difficulty.
Important Note: Hike at your own risk and be sure to inform the group of any limitations or concerns you might have. Also, download your own map as the trail’s conditions and length are estimated. Always be prepared with essentials as the MeetUp host reserves the right to make changes “as we go” based on weather and other factors. Come test your limits and soak in some incredible views this Labor Day weekend!
Looking for a spectacular way to bid farewell to summer? Don’t miss the 7th annual Monu-Palooza Festival, taking place on September 3rd, from noon to 8 p.m. at Limbach Park in Monument, CO. This year, the festival has stepped up its game by adding a street fair along Front Street, featuring local businesses and additional activities. As always, you can expect an array of food trucks, like Lori Lynn’s Cookies and Cream and German Pretzel Kings, to satisfy your hunger. The music lineup is eclectic and exciting, featuring local favorites like Monument-based Ashtonz and Wirewood Station and newcomers Mojo Filter and The Country Music Project.
Advance tickets are available for $15, but don’t worry if you’re late to the party – tickets are $25 on the event day. Pack your camping chairs and sunscreen, and prepare for a day filled with food, music, and community spirit. With something for everyone, Monu-Palooza 7.0 promises an end-of-summer celebration that’s not to be missed!
Looking for a unique and adventurous way to celebrate Labor Day this year? Why not end your summer with a splash by paddleboarding on Prospect Lake? Join UpaDowna during the Labor Day Lift Off for an hour of stand-up paddleboarding (SUP). Perfect for all skill levels, this event has got you covered with all the essential equipment provided. Located at the northeast corner of Prospect Lake in Memorial Park, the meetup spot is easy to find, although parking may be limited due to the festivities.
Whether you’re flying solo, bringing a date, or making it a family affair, the cost is $15 per SUP and just an additional $5 for a second person on the same board. It’s a budget-friendly and fun way to get out on the water. Children are welcome; however, those under 12 are recommended to be accompanied by an adult, and kids 5 and under are required to have another individual onboard.
Be sure to wear clothes you don’t mind getting wet, bring sun protection, and strap on some sandals. UpaDowna will also provide small dry bags for your keys and cell phones. So make your Labor Day memorable by paddleboarding with UpaDowna!
Are you looking to kick off your Labor Day weekend with high energy and a lot of fun? Then grab your tickets for the Air Force Falcons vs. Robert Morris football game on Saturday, September 2nd, at Falcon Stadium in the U.S. Air Force Academy. The game starts at 11:00 AM and will surely be a thrilling experience for the whole family.
Falcon Stadium is known for its electric atmosphere and a strong sense of community. As you cheer on the Falcons for their 2023 season opener, you’ll feel the rush of excitement, making it an unforgettable way to spend your holiday weekend. With various seating options available, there’s something for every budget.
This is more than just a game; it’s a family-friendly event that brings people together to celebrate sportsmanship, teamwork, and some good old American football. Whether you’re a die-hard Falcons fan or new to the game, you will surely have an incredible time. Get ready for some tailgating, wave that foam finger, and make this Labor Day weekend a touchdown!
Celebrate Labor Day with a blend of culture, community, and creativity at this free event sure to captivate visitors of all ages. Bring the whole family to enjoy an array of kid-friendly art activities and groove to live music that will keep your spirits high. Elevate your experience with a mesmerizing performance by Ballet Folklórico de Barajas, capturing the essence of cultural storytelling through dance.
Local food vendors will be on-site, offering delicious bites for purchase to keep you fueled throughout the day. But that’s not all—attendees will also have the special opportunity to explore the Museum’s latest exhibition, “Mi Gente: Manifestations of Community in the Southwest.” Curated by the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, this exhibit dives deep into the complexities and beauty of the community. Primarily featuring works from Chicanx/a/o, Hispanic, and Mexican-American artists rooted in Colorado and New Mexico, “Mi Gente” challenges us to consider the implications of colonization, migration, and the politics of community.
Mark your calendars; this Labor Day celebration enriches the mind as much as it delights the senses!