EDGE OF STEAMBOAT

Weekend will bustle with activity

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— Rainbow Weekend, a 21-year tradition in Steamboat Springs, kicks off today with hot air balloon launches, a surplus of art and, of course, the rodeo.

Although Art in the Park started 27 years ago, the Steamboat Springs Arts Council's annual festival has been gladly accepted by the Chamber Resort Association as a participant in Rainbow Weekend.

About 120 art vendors from around the western United States will present visitors with everything from funky handmade hula-hoops to eccentric jewelry to abstract sculptures made of metal, wood and clay.

This weekend and the week following marks one of the busiest since my January arrival in Steamboat.

Thousands are expected for Art in the Park, and I'm told to expect the crowds to spill onto the nearby roads at Elk Park to see the variety of works by artists from Steamboat and elsewhere.

In addition to the art, I look forward to waking up to a sky raining hot air balloons and the sound of fire blasts that provide the lift the balloons need.

Not that it needs proving again, but the beautiful combination of art and balloons should convince any doubters that this small town knows how to put on a show.

Whether it's a Strings thing, a performance at Perry-Mansfield, the newly founded Summer Theater Festival, Rainbow Weekend or various musical artists around town Steamboat has been jumping with entertainment this summer.

Steamboat may lack coffee shops open after 8 p.m. or a movie theater that screens the latest foreign or independent film, but there's no shortage of things to do during the high season.

Just take a look around.

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