Gold Rush Days, Buena Vista’s signature annual event, is held each August for the past 40 years! It is the celebration of our town’s heritage and history combined with:
Free Live Music, Art & Craft Fair with over 100 vendors, Bungee Jumps, BV Circus & BV Dance Shows, Kids Games, Beer Garden & Food, Historical Reenactments, Toilet Seat Races and the Burro Race Triple Crown. Plus, many local businesses in Buena Vista offer great shopping, incredible food selections and live music throughout the day and evening. On Sunday, August 2 from 8:30 to 10:00 am enjoy Cowboy Church & Old Time Cowboy Tunes with Carole & Randy Barnes.
Gold Rush Days was founded in collaboration with Buena Vista Heritage Museum, First Colorado (Company D), and the Buena Vista Welcome Center & Chamber of Commerce. The event also serves as an annual fundraiser to support the Buena Vista Welcome Center.
Enjoy Pancakes in the Pavilion, hosted by The Optimist Club. The all-you-can-eat event will be on morning of August 1st from 8:00a – 10:30a at the River Park Pavilion.
The popular Madams of Central Colorado show is playing the evening of August 1st. Doors open at 6:30p. For ticket information, go here.
Friday, July 31st
Enjoy two great shows hosted by Buena Vista Heritage Museum
7:00pm: Medicine Man Show
8:30pm: The Czestekova Side Show
Saturday, August 1st & Sunday, August 2nd
Come down to River Park (913 East Main Street) for more of the festivities with an Art & Craft Fair, Civil War Encampment, Historical Reenactments, Circus and Dance Performances, Family Games, Food, Beer, Music and More…
Scroll down for more of the two day event schedule!
Held at BV River Park 913 East Main St. Buena Vista, CO 81211.
Art & Craft Fair:
Buena Vista’s largest annual art and craft fair takes place during Gold Rush Days. There are over 100 booths featuring unique items including metal work, photography, pottery, custom jewelry, clothing, musical instruments, and much more. Stroll through the vendors booths, enjoy the music nearby and visit the historical reenactments.
FREE Live Music on Saturday & Sunday
Check back for band announcements and times.
Local and BV River Park Cuisine:
Enjoy a variety a cuisine such BBQ, sandwiches, tacos, snacks, hot dogs and brats, ice cream, smoothies, shaved ice, and popcorn all paired with beer or wine from our Beer Garden at River Park. If you are looking for more, wander through town for a large variety of local eateries.
Eddyline Brewery one of Colorado’s premier mountain town craft breweries and our home town favorite is sponsoring the Beer Garden. They are sure to be a great pairing with the entertainment, food trucks and vendors that will be taking place during the festivities.
Family & Kids Events:
Euro Bungee, water bubbles, dunk tank, kids games, face painting, The Buena Vista Circus, Buena Vista Dance Studio & Chaffee County Fire Department activities. In addition, hula hoops (with contests daily) and bubble blowing activities will be offered by the main stage. Of course there will be ice cream, snow cones, popcorn and lots vendors offering toys, games and clothing.
The Buena Vista Circus founded in 2019 to provide circus training to children and adults in Buena Vista and the surrounding areas as a personal development and community-building tool will be hosting two shows held at noon both days of the event. They will also offer face painting, tumbling activities, balloon twisting and fun adventures for the entire family.
Central Colorado UAS Club will be bringing their Drone cage to allow demonstrations, education, and event goers the opportunity to fly a drone. The Club’s purpose is to bring together UAS pilots, hobbyists and interested parties together in an informal, social setting.
Toilet Seat Races: Sunday, August 2nd at 10:30
Toilet Seat Races, a favorite town event, will be held after the Burros take off.
HELD in front of Avery Parsons Elementary School on East Main St. and Beldan St.
Races will be held for children and adults. There will be prizes! The Toilet Seat Races are LOTS of FUN to watch!
Also visit the Buena Vista Heritage Museum at nearby 511 East Main Street for a $5.00 Day Visit or the Depot at McPhelemy Park for only $1.00 each day.
Significant to Gold Rush Days is the Civil War Encampment and the variety of reenactments and shows that occur over the two days. With the added space the encampment is 80 feet by 80 feet where First Colorado (Company D) shares with attendees how one lived back in the 1860’s. They actually camp at the venue for two days. Reenactment Events include a dedicated stage with sound and tents for spectators. The schedule is as follows:
SCHEDULE of Events: Saturday, August 1, 2020
9:00 AM – 5:30 PM Gold Rush Days Free Event
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Civil War Recruiting Station-Learn to march and drill as it was done in the 1860’s
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Civil War Encampment – Hands on Demonstration of spinning, tatting or quilting.
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Civil War Encampment – Learn how the Mountain Howitzer was operated in the Civil War
11:30 AM – 12:00 PM Reenactment Stage – Shootout in BV – Buena Vista History comes to life on the Reenactment Stage!
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Buena Vista Circus Show
1:30 PM – 2:00 PM Reenactment Stage Shootout in BV – Buena Vista History comes to life on the Reenactment Stage!
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Civil War Encampment – A Victorian Tea by reservation, drop-ins if seating is available. This is a free event.
4:00 PM – 4:45 PM Reenactment Stage – Musket Demonstration. Learn how the Model 1861 Springfield musket was used in the Civil War
SCHEDULE of Events: Sunday, August 2, 2020
8:30 AM – 5:00 PM Gold Rush Days Free Event
8:30 AM – 10:00 AM Cowboy Church at Main Music Stage with Carole & Randy Barnes
9:00 AM Triple Crown Burro Race on East Main St. and Colorado Ave. Passes by the Gold Rush Days Venue
10:30 AM Toilet Seat Races for Adults & Children East Main St. & Beldan Ave.
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Civil War Encampment A Victorian Tea by reservation, drop-ins if seating is available. This is a free event.
11:30 AM – 12:00 PM Reenactment Stage Shootout in BV – Buena Vista History comes to life on the Reenactment Stage!
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Buena Vista Circus Show
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Civil War Encampment – Hands on Demonstrations of spinning, tatting or quilting
Cowboy Church: Sunday, August 2, 2020
8:30 AM Old Time Cowboy Tunes with Carole & Randy Barnes – Hammered Dulcimar, Concertina Guitar & Vocals.
9:00 AM to 10:00 AM Cowboy Church Message from Jon Hollenbeck Sing along with Carole & Randy Barnes
Triple Crown Burro Race: Sunday, August 2, 2020
9:00am Burro Race Begins on East Main St. and Colorado Avenue. Burro’s will pass the BV River Park & Gold Rush Days Venue when they are racing out and returning in. Cheer on the participants!
9:10am Poop Drop Contest & Mini Donkey Race.
10:30am Burro’s begin crossing finish line!
To sponsor a donkey, or participate in the mini donkey race please call Brad at 303-906-2269 or send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
From Cockeyed Liz, whose former Palace of Joy is less than a block from the museum, to arch-rival Belle Brown, Salida’s Laura Evans, and Lillian Powers of Florence, the madams and their girls discuss how they got into “the business” and other aspects of life as a fallen woman at the turn of the last century.
Madams of Central Colorado:
The popular “Madams of Central Colorado” will return to the Buena Vista Heritage Museum in 2020. Advanced reservations are recommended since this show tends to sell out. Seating is limited. Tickets are $15 and are available at the Buena Vista Welcome Center & Chamber of Commerce and the Buena Vista Heritage Museum (511 East Main St.) Doors open 30 minutes early for seating and entertainment. Approx. start time 7:00 PM. Click here to purchase your ticket!