Late summer locations to savor

Posted 8/25/16

Summer is just beginning and things are starting to warm up around here … Whoa, no. Wait a minute. Holy cow, Labor Day is right around the corner! Where did the Summer go?

I guess it gets like that as we get older. Time starts to fly by and …

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Late summer locations to savor

Posted

Summer is just beginning and things are starting to warm up around here … Whoa, no. Wait a minute. Holy cow, Labor Day is right around the corner! Where did the Summer go?

I guess it gets like that as we get older. Time starts to fly by and before you know it the seasons are changing. But, we still have a few more weeks of nice weather to enjoy and I’m going to recommend heading to a great place in Golden this weekend.

Parfet Park. It’s the one right there on Washington Avenue and Clear Creek right downtown. I mention it as a location for lots of events but haven’t really talked about it as a stand alone destination. But last Sunday I was there all day setting up for a concert and then performing and I got to see just how nice the little park really has become.

First of all, it’s a very well kept park that borders the river. It’s got plenty of grass for lots of activities and just running around. It’s also become kind of a hub for beach volleyball players. They have a nice sand court permanently installed on the east side of the park, but a lot of players set up their own courts nearby, so if you like to play volleyball you’ll find plenty of company and some of the players are very good. It’s fun to just bring a lawn chair and watch the action.

It’s also a great embarking point to just walk along the Clear Creek trail up to the kayak park and other things that set along the river. If you like to people watch you can do so from lots of great vantage points. They even have nice benches to just sit on and watch the tubers float by. Plus, they have a restroom building.

This coming Sunday, August 28, it’s also going to be the site of the Golden Gran Fondo National Championship Bicycle Racing Series. That’s a top rated event that will start and finish at Parfet Park and will be the place where they will be having the Finish Line Festival during and after the race.

The race itself is quite a challenge and hits on some of the routes of the other big cycling events through the mountains and back down to Golden. It’s open to all riders and there is still time to register if the Olympics inspired you to get out and go for the gold.

But, this is no cake walk. It follows the path of past Coors Classic races, heads up towards the Continental Divide, climbs hills that take your breath away and even winds around a hard packed dirt road. There’s over 14,000 feet of climbing, rewarded by spectacular descents. You can enter in any of three distances. 30,50 and 80 miles. There’s also $2000 in prize money involved.

All the details about the ride and entry information can be found on their website: www.granfondonationalchampionshipseries.com/golden-gran-fondo.

But as far as the party in the park goes, it’s a cycling fan’s place to be. They are going to have lots of booths set up with bike demos, food vendors, a beer garden and a mini farmer’s market. There will be plenty of reps there from various bicycle companies as well. Plus, there will be live music all day, Big Wheel races and something called a Cruiser’s Crit.

The whole thing kicks off at 8 a.m. but will continue through the afternoon. So, Goldenites, be aware that there are going to be a lot of bicycles around town on Sunday. Please drive with a little extra caution.

Our Summer is almost over, but don’t fret. Our wonderful Fall season is coming up next and that’s full of great events to enjoy as well.

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