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Stories from Element 52

Stories from Element 52

Go A Festival for the Whole Family

“California may have world-famous Coachella, but Colorado has the underground Blues & Brews,” Alex says. “Both are amazing, but the former is in a desert and the latter takes place in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, with a spirit that suits Telluride’s outdoorsy, laid-back vibe.” Although the festival always takes place in early fall, when days are warm and nights are cool, be prepared for an unpredictable mix of sunshine, rain, and snow—especially if your group plans to camp here. The easy-going affair celebrates live music—from indie to jazz—and microbrews in equal measure. “There are several stages, like the Town Park Main Stage or Blues Stage, but I’m all about Mitch Woods’s Club 88,” Alex says. “That’s where you can get in on the action.” The jazz pianist hosts an after-hours piano jam at Liberty Bar & Lounge and invites any artist with an instrument to join in. “There’s also a blues challenge every year where eight musicians compete for a spot on the main stage and a recording session,” says Alex. Craft beers also battle it out on the festival grounds, with breweries like Durango, Telluride, and Ska serving ales and ciders that are entered into a Best-of-Fest contest. “The festival staff is actually responsible for creating Sierra Nevada’s coveted Back Porch Lager, which is served here exclusively,” Alex explains. “They feature 56 breweries and cideries with 170 styles of craft beer, so it’s a matter of having time to try them all.” Blues & Brews even gets the underage crowd to join in on the healthy competition with a talent show. “The Rainbow Kids Area has endless entertainment, games, and workshops,” explains Alex. “In fact, after you see the bungee trampoline and inflatable slide, you might have a hard time finding your way back to the main stage too.” Stories from Element 52