There’s no place like Aspen at the end of summer |

There’s no place like Aspen at the end of summer

Barbara Platts
A rainbow shines over members in the VIP area at the Jazz Aspen Snowmass concert on Friday evening.
Anna Stonehouse/The Aspen Times

Everyone who visits Aspen, whether for a weekend or a season, tends to do so in search of a good time. Even those of us who live here year round expect fun adventures and happening events to abound on a consistent basis. This makes practically every weekend here a giant party. It also makes holidays particularly overwhelming.

I would go as far as to say that holidays in Aspen are (now, don’t hate me here) a bit overrated. If you’re still reading, let me explain. The Fourth of July, while being adored by every age group, is a day filled with traffic jams and delays. Thanksgiving is the start to the ski season, but it’s typically a bit anticlimactic because conditions on the slopes aren’t great yet. Christmas Day is OK, but can get a bit chaotic with all of the fur coats in town. And just don’t even get me started on New Year’s. My wallet is still hurting from my last extravagant New Year’s Eve out in town.

But Labor Day, now that’s a holiday I can get behind in the Roaring Fork Valley. That long weekend, which includes the first Monday of September, always reminds me why I originally fell in love with this place. Labor Day is always a popular time of the year when old friends and family members return and locals stay put to enjoy. A large reason people come into town is for the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Labor Day Experience. But also because it’s one of the last official hurrahs of summer when the weather is still (mostly) warm and enjoyable. It’s three days that encompasses the last hurrah that the summer season has to offer. Afterward, things start to slow down a bit for the fall offseason.

This year, I wasn’t able to make it to any of the shows in Snowmass (yes, I know, I was a bad Aspenite), but I did get to spend some quality time with family and good friends, which when it gets down to it is really what the holidays are about. I also got to check out some of the new watering holes in downtown that I hadn’t made it to yet like the Public House, 7908 Supper Club and that mysterious new bar in the former Aspen Times building.

Whatever you may have done on your three-day weekend, I hope it was enjoyable, done with people you love, and that it helped remind you of why this place we live in is so special. I know it did all of those things for me.

And now, we will close out summer and say hello to fall. Time to put those white pants away until the warm weather returns.

Happy offseason!

Barbara Platts loves a good Aspen Labor Day weekend. Now, it’s time to welcome in the quiet months and stop talking about summer. Seriously though, she’s done talking about summer for the rest of the year. Reach her at or on Twitter @BarbaraPlatts.