An eclectic blend of rock bands and singer/songwriters can be found on the KBCO World Class Rock Stage presented by Date Night Denver at the 29th annual A Taste of Colorado. The four-day, free admission, food, music, and entertainment Festival will take place Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31 through Sept. 3, in Downtown Denver’s Civic Center Park.
Blending the styles of Texas, psychedelic, and Chicago blues, Young Austin and NO Difference will introduce the audience to “Texandrix blues” Friday at 11:30 a.m. Sarah Samantha Rose, an emerging vocalist and versatile musician, playing the piano, guitar, and ukulele, will take the stage at 1:45 p.m. Alternative/indie rock band Calling Out West will entertain at 3:30 p.m. The Mary Louise Lee Band will perform hit sounds from the ’60s and today, including jazz, R&B, and pop, at 6 p.m. Playing a variety of musical styles, Jill Carr & Funkology will get the audience dancing at 8:15 p.m.
On Saturday, “American indie pop rock” band Foam Bullets will take the stage at 10:45 a.m. with their simple, straightforward songs. “Rock reggae/ska” band P-Nuckle will entertain the audience at 1:30 p.m. Message In A Bottle: The Police Tribute will perform at 4:45 p.m. The seven-piece, female-fronted band The Ticket will end the day with their tight harmonies and choreography at 8:15 p.m.
Singer/songwriter Angie Stevens will meld influences from alternative country, indie/rock, contemporary folk, and pop Sunday at 10:45 a.m. With an infectious repertoire of original tunes steeped in American roots music, Tequila Mockingbird will take the stage at 1:30 p.m. Chris Daniels & The Kings, a seven-piece horn band that entertains crowds with a mix of R&B, funk, and jump blues, hit the stage at 4:45 p.m. With a tight rhythm section, solid horns, and smooth vocals, Moses Jones will conclude the night at 8 p.m.
Opening Monday at 10:45 a.m. is The Big Motif, a rock band with roots in blues, jazz, reggae, and psychedelic. Enjoy heavy-hitting rock and funk from Frogs Gone Fishin’ at 1:30 p.m. Hazel Miller’s powerful voice and genuine soul sound will radiate at 3:45 p.m. With his lush vocals and acoustic guitar, Rob Drabkin will close out the Festival at 6 p.m.
In addition to the KBCO World Class Rock Stage presented by Date Night Denver, the Main Stage and three other entertainment stages located throughout the Festival will serve up a continuous menu of music, including the KYGO Country Stage and the TUMS Freshers Heritage Stage presented by Westword.
More than 50 of Colorado’s favorite food establishments will be selling a wide variety of small portions to full meals, ensuring that there will be something for every palate. The Fine Dining area will host some of Denver’s finest restaurants. The Albert Bartlett Culinary Showcase presented by 630 KHOW features local and nationally-renowned chef demonstrations creating simple, yet elegant meals.
Festivalgoers can shop in more than 280 Marketplace booths for original arts and crafts, home and gift items, furniture, jewelry, imports, and more. Fine Art in the Park will display original works in a variety of mediums created by artists from around the country. Shoppers also can explore the Home & Lifestyles area, which features a variety of exhibitors displaying products and services such as window installation, kitchen remodeling, cookware, basement refinishing, and salons and spas.
There will be plenty of music, magic, clowns, and puppets on the Comfort Dental KidzStage presented by MIX 100, and the KidZone features play equipment and hands-on craft activities. Kids and adults also can enjoy carnival rides and games Saturday through Monday.
In the Festival of Mountain and Plain area, families can learn about the state’s pioneer past, nature, and the environment. Featured artisans will demonstrate Navajo weaving and culture, spinning, rug braiding, lace crocheting, felting, and quilting, along with the popular blacksmith demonstration. At the Raptor Education Foundation (REF) exhibit, children can learn about birds, their environment, and their interactions with humans.
Sponsors of this year’s Festival are: 9NEWS, Aggreko, LLC, Air National Guard: Rise To The Challenge Tour, Albert Bartlett, All Copy Products, American Medical Response, Aspen Pure, Barefoot Wine & Bubbly, BIC, Blue Moon, Coast 2 Coast Communications, Colorado Lottery, Colorado Native, Comfort Dental, Coors Banquet, Courtyard by Marriott Denver Downtown, Date Night Denver, The Denver Post, Downtown Denver Partnership, Inc., Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que, Ford Experience Tour, Hill’s® Science Diet® Ideal Balance™, International Delight Iced Coffee, Jelly Belly, LBA Realty, Levinson Eye Clinic, Mike’s Hard Lemonade, PEPSI, Residence Inn Denver City Center, State Farm®, Sturgeon Electric, TownePlace Suites Denver Downtown, TUMS Freshers, Verizon Wireless, Xcel Energy, and XingTea.
Festival hours are Friday, Aug. 31, 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday, Sept. 1, and Sunday, Sept. 2, 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Monday, Sept. 3, 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Festival of Mountain and Plain … A Taste of Colorado is a community celebration that is produced by and benefits Downtown Denver Events, Inc., the Downtown Denver Partnership family’s community events nonprofit organization. The Festival is an opportunity for people throughout the region to come together to experience and appreciate our diverse cultural traditions, and to learn more about our state’s Western heritage. The Festival highlights visual and performing arts in addition to featuring educational programs and culinary demonstrations.