DENVER -- Two big festivals are making their return to Colorado after a hiatus in 2020.
Both the Taste of Colorado and Cherry Creek Arts Festival are happening in Colorado this weekend after taking last year off because of the pandemic.
”We’ve been planning this event since January not knowing what it was going to look like September 4-6," said Sharon Alton, the senior vice president of Downtown Experience with the Downtown Denver Partnership.
Despite that uncertainty, vendors showed up Friday afternoon and Saturday morning to get their booths set up and ready for the weekend of festivities.
”We’re really excited to be showcasing all things local Colorado," said Alton.
The festival is making its comeback in a new spot this year, as well. In previous years its been held at Civic Center Park, but with physical distancing being a top concern, organizers made the move to the 16th Street Mall.
”The biggest thing that we wanted to do was spread out over an 8 block radius so people don’t have to pack into one space," Alton said.
The extra space is giving poeple like Jonathon Nesvik, the President of Mystic Mountain Distillery, a chance to rebound while helping other fellow business owners along the way.
”It’s hard to even explain what last year was like because it was just like trying to get through it and hope everything came back to normal," said Nesvik, ”some have struggled worse than others.
Nesvik helped organize the "Stills in the City" event within the Taste of Colorado. It's purpose is to showcase other distilleries and what they have to offer.
”Even though we’re all competitors against each other when it comes to shelf space there is a certain amount of Camaraderie within the guild," he said.
While the festival is primarily about food and drinks, art vendors also set up their booths in the 16th Street Mall, ready for whatever business came their way.
”We do really well at the Taste," said Melody Krob, who helps run Reflections and Metal. ”This is our living, this is our livelihood, this is what we do."
Krob said selling her husband's steel artwork at the Taste of Colorado has been something they've done as a family for years. Last year took a lot from them, but this year they're back with more inventory than ever before and a big fanny pack to fill with cash.
”It’s worth the sales," she said.
The Taste of Colorado is happening September 4-6. For more information click here.
The Cherry Creek Arts Festival is also happening September 4-6. For more information, click here.