Celebrating 150 Years of Manitou Springs

Join us for special 150th events all year long!

1 year to celebrate 150!

Where did we start, where are we at, and where are we going? With one year to celebrate our 150 year history, there is so much to do we can’t fathom creating any more lengthy an introduction that takes your time away from getting busy with all of these fantastic events taking place this year! We’ve laid it all out right here for you, so without further ado….Happy 150th, Manitou!

Community Call Out!

“I am most excited to see the community come together in celebration after a tough couple of years! Manitou’s future is bright because of the people who live here & we will have a blast celebrating everything to come.”

An Art on the Avenue Celebration

Purple Mountain Dance Hall
Sunset Hills Dancing Hall

The Hiawatha Gardens Task Force approached the Manitou Springs Creative District in the fall of 2021 with a request to work with the City of Manitou Springs in creating a temporary work of public art. We aim to install a mural on the western wall during October Arts Month. The inspiration for this project stems from the function of the historic building as a dancehall filled with music and movement.

We are an inclusive organization that values listening in service to our community, and we’ve received over 50 responses. We hear you and thank you for your valuable feedback. Help us with this community mural by voting now!

Events Happening in 2022

Packy the Packrat Puppet Show

original, older looking, Packy the Packrat book next to a page of text.

Wednesdays 10:30 – 11:30  September 14 – October 5

A production that is inspired by the book, “Packy Climbs Pikes Peak” written by locally renowned author, Maud M. Keithley

Packy’s story continues at the Manitou Springs Heritage Center (517 Manitou Avenue) every Wednesday.  All shows are free for all ages and include a free Packy-themed activity book for you to take home.

Arts Month October

Arts Month! Oct 1 -31

From the First Friday Art Walk in Downtown Manitou Springs to public art walking and biking tours, October is a beautiful time to explore the rich arts & culture offerings of Manitou Springs artists, galleries, musicians, poets, and other creative pursuits.

Ghost Stories of Old Manitou Walking Tours

Various Dates in October 2022

These eerie yet fun ghost tours will walk you through long lost stories of real residents in Manitou Springs’ history. This year, the ghostly spirits come back to visit for four weekends in October (Oct 7, 8,14 ,15, 20, 21,22 , 27 and 28). For the first time we are offering events on Thursday nights.

The Manitou Springs Heritage Center, along with our friends at THEATREdART, provide these evening tours that are thoughtfully scripted and brilliantly presented to provide a fun, family experience.

Indigenous Weekend

October 8-10, 2022
 
A celebration all weekend long featuring special guest speakers from Indigenous Peoples of the Southern Ute, Ute Mountain, and Uintah Ouray Ute Tribes, a re-dedication of the Historic Ute Trail in Manitou Springs, ‘Food From the Earth’ potluck featuring Seven-Minute Stew, and more throughout this amazing event!
 
 

Halloween High Tea

Halloween High Tea
October 28-30, 2022
 

Seatings at 10:30am, 12:30pm, and 2:30pm each day.

The Queens Parlor Tea Room will be doing Our Halloween High Teas

Spota are filling up fast so call for your reservations today, this is a lot of fun and we often fill up. Please call (719) 685-1011 to make your reservation. Costumes welcomed!

 

Emma Crawford Coffin Races

Coffin racers at the Emma Crawford Coffin Races

RETURNING OCTOBER 29, 2022

Celebrating 28 Years in 2022
The Emma Crawford Coffin Races
​and Festival
The traditional races ARE BACK this year for the 150th Anniversary of Manitou Springs! Sign up your team today!

Christmas Brass 2022

Christmas Brass - Brass Quartet
Sundays November 27-December 18, 2022 & Christmas Eve
 
The best way to get into the holiday mood is to listen to Christmas music. Get ready for a jolly good time with this free, family-friendly event featuring some of the greatest sounds of the season. Christmas Brass is a Brass Quartet with a long tradition of entertaining in Manitou Springs.  Every Sunday from Thanksgiving to Christmas, musicians stroll along Manitou Blvd. playing Christmas Carols and interacting with the holiday shoppers.  The group is made up of professional musicians from the Pikes Peak region and consists of two trombones and two trumpets who look forward to spreading Holiday cheer in Manitou each year.
 

Past Events

Relive all of the excitement that has occurred during Manitou Springs’ 150th Anniversary here, including events and celebrations throughout the city.

150th Anniversary Exhibit

Opening June 3, 2022 The Heritage Center’s 150th Anniversary exhibit will explore four key themes: Health Resort, Attractions, Community Builders and Road to Revival. The exhibit showcases how Manitou Springs evolved from its initial roots as a health resort to a center of tourist attractions.

Manitou Pollinator Garden Tours

Mansions Park Garden
A 1.7 mile (point to point) walking or cycling tour of mostly city park gardens, as well as a few privately owned businesses. Enjoy viewing gardens featuring native grasses, shrubs, and perennials specifically selected to support a healthy and diverse pollinator habitat. This entry was created thanks to support from Manitou Arts, Culture, and Heritage (MACH).
 
 

"The 100th Running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb” by Racer Don Sanborn

Saturday June 11, 10:00am

The Manitou Springs Heritage Center and Museum welcomes Pikes Peak Hill Climb racer Don Sanborn and his presentation, “The 100th Running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb”.  The Pikes Peak Auto Hill Climb originally started by Spencer Penrose in 1916 has now been running for 100 years. This presentation will look at the history of the Hill Climb and its racers,  and how the race has changed over the course of time.

“The Peak of Racing”, a presentation by Pikes Peak International Hill Climb winner Chris Lennon

Sunday June 12, 1:00pm

The Manitou Springs Heritage Center and Museum welcomes auto racer and author Chris Lennon for a talk and presentation of his book, “The Peak of Racing”. Mr. Lennon’s presentation and book are a “must” for racing fans everywhere. Pulling in stories from legends like Mario Andretti, the Unsers, Dominic Dobson, Rick Mears, Romain Dumas, Ari Vatanen, Randy Pobst, Jeff Zwart, and a host of others, it puts you in the driver’s seat in one of the world’s most famous races.

Pollinator Party

Saturday June 25, 9:00am-12:00pm

Keep up with the buzz and join us at Mansions Park for a Pollinator Party featuring the Pollinator Puppet Parade orchestrated by K8e Orr of Jibwa Studio. Enjoy free guided PaCMan Tours of Manitou’s Gardens, live music from the Tenderfoot Bluegrass Band, and vendors and information booths to ensure for an un-bee-lievably bee-autiful day!

"Combat Contrails: Vietnam" by author William B. Scott

Saturday July 2, 11:00am

The Pikes Peak Library District and the Manitou Springs Heritage Center and Museum welcome historian and author William B. Scott for a talk and presentation on his new book,  COMBAT CONTRAILS: VIETNAM. Mr. Scott’s presentation will cover 18 stories told by combatants who fought on the ground, in the air and over the water. From rescuing downed pilots as a determined enemy closed in, to dealing with a crazed water buffalo in the back of a lumbering C-123K transport, weathered warriors share their amazing, unforgettable Vietnam War experiences. COMBAT CONTRAILS: VIETNAM is the first book in a series of true stories ranging from the Cold War and reconnaissance to flight testing, combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, and special operations around the world. 

First Friday Art Walk
"The Pikes Peak Peanut Pusher"

Friday July 1, 4:30 – 7:30 (Now Showing Through December 2022)

The Manitou Springs Heritage Center and Museum proudly announces its nutty exhibit, “The Pikes Peak Peanut Pusher”. Oddly, three individuals have managed the nutty task of pushing a peanut up the dangerously steep slopes of Pikes Peak to its omnipresent summit. The first, Bill Williams, had lost a bizarre bet that knew no bounds and subsequently performed the feat on May 20 through June 9, 1929.  Perhaps, the most notorious Peanut Pusher was rockabilly music star, Ulysses Baxter, who performed The Peanut Push in a record breaking eight days.  In 1963, Mr. Baxter’s fame was forever cemented through extensive news coverage in every major newspaper, an appearance on The Jack Paar Program and even an appearance on the American game show, I’ve Got a Secret.

"The Pikes Peak Peanut Pusher"
- Live from Barr Trail

Saturday July 9, 9:00am

The City of Manitou Springs and the Manitou Springs Heritage Center and Museum proudly present The Pikes Peak Peanut Pusher-Live from Barr Trail.  Since its recorded history, Pikes Peak has been the inspiration for both tests of courage and willpower. Bob Salem, a local resident of Colorado Springs, will attempt to push a peanut up Barr Trail to the summit of America’s Mountain. The feat has been accomplished only three times during Manitou Springs’ 150-year history. The event will start at the Barr Trail trailhead (near the corner of 540 Ruxton Avenue) and feature live entertainment with the Thursday Drum Circle. Meet the Peanut Pusher and cheer him on to the top of Pikes Peak.

Due to limited parking at the trailhead, please consider parking in downtown Manitou Springs and take Manitou Incline Shuttle No. 33 to the event.  

Track the Peanut Pusher’s Progress Here

The Peanut Pusher

Pikes Peak, July 9-17, 2022

For the first time in the 21st Century, an ambitious gentleman is looking to make history – by pushing a peanut up Pikes Peak with a contraption taped to his nose. This is no easy feat, but with support from the community and region at large, this peanut pusher can cement his place in history!

"Where Manitou's Past
Meets the Present"

Saturday July 16, 11:00am

The Kingsleys in 1870s Colorado reveals the story of how one Englishwoman, Rose G. Kingsley, the eldest daughter of an Anglican clergyman, arrived in the newly-founded town Colorado Springs in November 1871 to organize the first reading room, the first music concert, and the Fountain Society of Natural Science. Rose’s brother, Maurice, was already in Colorado, inspired to emigrate there by city founder, William J. Palmer, a Civil War veteran and President of the Denver & Rio Grande Railway, and his English business partner, William A. Bell. The cultural influence of Maurice Kingsley and Rose was such that the town was soon referred to as “Little London.” In the summer of 1874, the Reverend Kingsley sojourned in nearby Manitou Springs for six weeks and extended the family’s legacy onto the culture of this nearby town.

Comedic Historical Theatre

July 22 -30, 2022
Celebrate Manitou Springs’ 150th anniversary in City Hall with a raucous ride through the decades through the eyes of Generation Alpha.
 

Prominent characters come to life in a comedic homage to the charming town we know and love. Various dates, check ticket link for details.

Watch our FOX21 News interview to learn more!

Pollinator Passport

Have you heard the buzz? Pick up a Pollinator Passport and visit local Manitou businesses in order to collect stamps and win prizes donated by local vendors! The more stamps you collect, the better chance you have of winning. 

Get your passport at the Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce, 354 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs, CO 80829 & register your passport here.

Speaker Series- Spa Rooftop Style

August 20, 2022
 
The Heritage Center will host guest speaker Doris McCraw on the rooftop deck at the Spa Building to deliver a program about early women physicians.  Exhibit materials specific to the Spa Building’s history/ mineral water treatments provided and on permanent display in the Spa Building’s lobby.
 

Heritage Brew Fest

September 24, 2022
 

Support local history in Manitou Springs at the Heritage Brewfest, back for the 7th year. Over 20 breweries & 3 great bands to entertain!

The 7th Annual Heritage Brew Festival features unlimited craft beer tastings from over 20 breweries, local bites and music, along with a priceless Pike’s Peak backdrop in beautiful Manitou Springs, Colorado

Paid attendance will be limited to 750

You must be 21 or older to gain admittance to the festival. 

ClayFest 2022

ClayFest 2022

October 1-2, 2022, 10:00am-4:00pm

Once upon a time a potter joined the Manitou Art Center fresh out of college… From an offhand remark to the director– “wouldn’t it be cool to hold a pottery olympics”– Clayfest was born. Our Potters’ games haven’t been seen in 16 years and we would like to change that. We will still hold our teaching events and will add the competitions on October 1st. Prizes will be given AND FUN WILL BE HAD…

Located at Soda Springs Pavilion, in Soda Springs Park.

Celebrate Manitou Week! Aug 1 - Aug 6, 2022

Day of Friendship

Join the community at Memorial Park on Monday, August 1st starting at 3:00 pm to celebrate our designation as the 3rd Friendliest City in the United States!

If you’re interested in attending with your local organization or non-profit, please email Jenna@manitouchamber.com 

potluck

Community Potluck

Come one, come all! We’re ready to reach the record for largest potluck to ever happen in Manitou Springs on Monday, August 1st! 

Bring your most delectable dish (along with your plates, napkins & utensils) at 5:00 pm to Memorial Park and join in this epic potluck event. Hotdogs and Hamburgers provided by Kiwanis Club. Let’s face it- it’s what we do in Manitou. 

Good Ol’ Fashioned Ice Cream Social & Pie Baking Contest

A gathering of friendly competition and ice cream enjoyment for all. New location this year, Mansions Park. Arrive with your pie between 4:00-4:30pm on Monday, August 1st. 

Are you a baker? We need you and your pies! Sign up to bake at this classic Manitou tradition this year. 150 pies is what we’re after!

Vintage Baseball DOUBLE HEADER 

Manitou Springs Heritage Center Springers playing by 1864 rules followed by Manitou Springs Fire Dept vs the City of Manitou Springs Game! 

Games start August 6th at 11:05 am at Roger Maestas Field, 60 Beckers Lane, Manitou Springs

Movies in the Park

The Manitou Springs Parks & Recreation Department Presents:

Movies in the Park

Enjoy a FREE family movie on the first Friday of June, July & August.  Activities include live music, face painting and more fun leading up to the movie. Events begin at 6:00 pm and the movie will begin around 8:30 pm.

Manitou Springs School District 14
Homecoming Parade
*Photo compliments of Angela Haas

September 30, 2022, 1:00pm

“Welcome Home Mustangs” Join the Manitou Springs School District students, staff, alumni, and community on September 30th, 2022 at 1:00pm for the Homecoming Parade throughout Downtown Manitou!

September 30, 2022, 7:00pm

Come cheer on the Manitou Mustangs Football team as they play against Woodland Park High School at this year’s Homecoming game! The game starts at 7:00pm on Friday, September 30, 2022. Located @ Manitou Springs High School.

October 1, 2022, 5:00-8:00pm

Alumni & Friends are invited to this fundraising event for the Manitou Springs School District on Saturday, October 1st, 2022 from 5:00pm-8:00pm at the Trading Post Pavilion (upstairs). Appetizers, dancing, and celebration! 

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