DENVER (August 2, 2011) – From spicy chilies and juicy peaches to tender beef and flowing wine, Colorado showcases seemingly unlimited agricultural products at farmers markets, rodeos and festivals throughout the summer and fall. August has been declared "Colorado Proud" month, and below is a sampling of events where attendees are invited to indulge in the many tastes of Colorado from August into the fall season.

Homegrown Festivals

•    Steamboat Wine Festival (August 4–7). An impressive gathering of domestic and international vintners, gourmet food purveyors, live entertainment, and an array of luxury-related vendors are featured at this annual event. www.SteamboatWineFestival.com

•    Olathe Sweet Corn Festival (August 5–6). Olathe’s hot days, cool nights and glacier-fed fields are said to produce some of America’s sweetest corn. Visitors can taste unlimited boiled or roasted corn on the cob, early in the corn season at the renowned Olathe Sweet Corn Festival. www.OlatheSweetCornFest.com

•    Known for its award-winning peaches, Palisade thrives during harvest season. The Palisade Peach Festival(August 18–21) kicks off with an ice cream social and street dance, celebrating everything peach from pies to ice cream, preserves to salsas, and even virgin peach daiquiris. The Lafayette Peach Festival (August 20) features 30,000 pounds of organic Palisade peaches, with 600 fresh peach pies and more than 2,500 peach smoothes. www.PalisadePeachFest.com, www.LafayetteColorado.com/peachfestival/2011peachfestival/2011peachfestival.html

•    Delta County Fair and Rodeo (August 7–14) in Hotchkiss is a living testament to the Old West that once ran Colorado. As part of the Colorado Pro Rodeo Circuit, offering everything from rodeos to roping, a Dutch oven cook-off, barbeque and livestock show. www.DeltaCounty.com/index.aspx?NID=443, to view a complete list of Colorado county fairs, visit: www.Ext.Colostate.edu/staffres/fairsched.pdf.

•    Beef N’ Bean Day (August 13) in Milliken showcases a bean cook off contest and barbeque dinner at this fun-filled festival complete with a beer garden, pet parade, jalapeno eating contest, and horseshoe tournament. 

•    Telluride Mushroom Festival (August 18–21). Shroomfest celebrates all aspects of the fungal world, from gourmet wild edibles to medicinal mushrooms grown in Telluride. The San Juan Mountains that surround the town are famous for the bounty of fungal species grown in the region thanks to summer monsoon rain storms. www.Shroomfest.com

•    Cherry Creek Food and Wine (August 20) celebrates the diverse and sophisticated tastes of Cherry Creek North dining, complemented with open-bar wine and artisan spirits, performance art, live music and more. www.CherryArts.org/foodandwine/about

•    Rocky Ford Watermelon Day (August 20) celebrates the world-renown cantaloupes and watermelons produced in Rocky Ford, home to some of the most fertile soils in the nation. www.ArkValleyFair.com

•    Colorado State Fair (August 26–September 5). With livestock shows, horse shows and fine arts exhibition to the Colorado Dueling Cooks Challenge, where professional chefs are paired with home cooks to prepare an all-Colorado meal, there is something for everyone at the Colorado State Fair. www.ColoradoStateFair.com

•    Corn Roast Festival (August 26–27) celebrates all things corn in Loveland with unlimited roasted and boiled corn for sale and corn shucking, eating and recipe contests. www.Loveland.org/CornRoastFestival

•    Taste of Colorado (September 2–5). Originally named Festival of Mountain and Plain, Taste of Colorado is the state’s end-of-summer celebration in Denver. More than 500,000 people enjoy over 50 local food establishments, 270 marketplace artisans and vendors, six entertainment stages, and educational programs promoting the diverse cultural and western heritage of the region. www.ATasteofColorado.com

•    Windsor Harvest Festival (September 3–5) is kicking off its 90th anniversary with a hot air balloon launch and parade during this end of summer event. The festival will showcase a town barbeque, street dance and horse drawn carriage rides. www.WindsorHarvestFest.com

•    Colorado’s potatoes are known for their superior color, shape, and in some varieties, nutritional properties resulting from the ideal location, climate and soil. The Monte Vista Potato Festival (September 10) celebrates the region’s potatoes with a variety of tours of fields, vendors, food booths, chef demos, and more. The Potato Day Festival (September 10) in Greeley offers a free baked potato and 30–35 demonstrations including corn shelling and kid’s potato patch. www.ColoradoPotato.orgwww.GreeleyGov.com/Museums/PotatoDayFestival.aspx

•    Apple Fest (September 10). The Historic Turner Farm invites guests to step back in time to the turn of the 20th century and enjoy apple pie contests, old time demonstrations and great family fun in Buena Vista.

•    Colorado Mountain Wine Fest (September 15–18) draws thousands of wine lovers to sample a growing array of Colorado wines and participate in a variety of events, including the Tour de Vineyards bicycle tour, winding through 25 miles of the wine country and orchards of Palisade. www.ColoradoWineFest.com

For more information on Colorado’s agricultural products, farmers markets and events, download a copy of the 2011 Colorado Farm Fresh Directory at www.ColoradoAgriculture.com/farmfresh.

ABOUT COLORADO

Colorado is a four-season destination offering unparalleled adventure and recreational pursuits, a thriving arts scene, a rich cultural heritage, flavorful cuisine, 26 renowned ski areas and resorts. The state's breathtaking scenic landscape boasts natural hot springs, the headwaters of seven major rivers, many peaceful lakes and reservoirs, 54 mountain peaks that top 14,000 feet and 12 national parks, monuments and historic sites. For more information or a copy of the 2011 Colorado Official State Vacation Guide, visit www.COLORADO.com or call 1-800-COLORADO. Media are invited to visit the Colorado Media Room at www.COLORADO.com/media-room for story ideas, press releases, press kits, and high-resolution, downloadable photos and video for editorial use. Follow Colorado on Twitter at www.twitter.com/colorado or become a Colorado Facebook fan at www.facebook.com/visitcolorado.
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