Summer fun ramping up in Minturn | VailDaily.com

Summer fun ramping up in Minturn

Special to the Daily

MINTURN — When Barry Weston Clark moved to Minturn, he fell in love with its small-town charm.

The owner of Weston Snowboards on Main Street, Clark says one of his favorite things to do in the summer is to gather the family and cruise down to Little Beach Park on their mountain bikes to catch a free movie or concert.

"You can't beat Minturn in the summer," he says. "We love the market, all the shows in the park, seeing families of rafters, kayakers and stand-up paddleboarders cruise by on the Eagle River; it's just a blast. Plus it's a really dog friendly town. And there's a ton of biking and hiking available."

And Clark isn't the only one to notice how great the hiking is in Minturn. Town Manager Jim White said the market draws lots of people to town, but it is only part of the draw for many of those visitors.

"We did some research, and it turns out hiking is the number one draw to this region," he said. "And we have some amazing hiking trails here in Minturn."

White and the town of Minturn plan to release an official, town-approved hiking map by mid-summer, in an effort to help hikers get to know the trails.

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"We unveiled it at a recent meeting with local business owners, and it got a great reception," White said.

Music

White gives credit to his small-town staff, saying they have to work much harder than the bigger towns to pull off events like today's Minturn Market, Thursday's Fourth of July celebration and the upcoming concert series.

He gives economic development coordinator Michelle Metteer credit for the market and the upcoming hiking map, and said Terry Armistead, who will be singing the national anthem on Thursday, does a tremendous job pulling the bands together for the summer concert series.

"She's been able to get some really great bands booked," White said. "And she herself has the voice of an angel."

Among the bands Armistead has booked to play the free concert series this summer is The Congress, who just played the Telluride Bluegrass Festival and play shows in Washington D.C. and Virginia.

"I really enjoy the amphitheater there. It's a small venue with some really cool seating," said Scott Lane, guitar player with The Congress. "I'm really looking forward to the show."

The Minturn Summer Concert series runs every Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m., except for July 4 where it will be from 3 to 6 p.m.

Recreation

Hiking, markets and concerts aren't all the town is focused on for summer recreation, White said.

According to White, Weston Snowboards has been a great addition to the town, offering a chance for people to try America's fastest growing water sport — stand-up paddleboarding.

"We've tried to make that our focus this summer," Clark said. "But we also have a really cool shag carpet longboard."

From the Weston shop you can book a trip with Stand-Up Colorado on the Colorado River.

"We see people cruising by on them in Minturn all the time, so we thought it'd be great to offer it from the shop," Clark said.

Weston is an official dealer of Hala SUP boards out of Steamboat Springs.

"It's the perfect board for this area," Clark said.

Market starts today

But the granddaddy of all Minturn attractions is the market, which begins today, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Minturn native Cesar Hermosillo says he goes for the great food.

"I like to go get an organic lemonade, some roasted peppers and check out the baked goods, mostly," he said. "But the other stuff is cool too. A few years ago I bought a tapestry that I really like."

Local vendor Lalka Panteva, of Lalka's Designs, spent her first year at the Minturn Market last summer. She said she was surprised to see how well her product — handmade tableclothes, placemats and kitchenwares — was welcomed by the community.

"I had some of the most fun of my life at the Minturn Market," she said. "I can't wait for it now every year."

The Minturn Market runs every Saturday through Sept. 14.