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Buena Vista Heritage Museum. Photo by Carly Winchell

The 73rd Annual Gold Rush Days celebration in Buena Vista is set to return to a former location on August 12 and 13. Over the past few years, Gold Rush Days has been staged out of McPhelemy Park and the fields down by River Park, but this year the festival is returning to East Main Street in the heart of downtown Buena Vista.

Image courtesy of the Buena Vista Chamber website.

The event will be centered near the Buena Vista Heritage Museum (506 East Main Street) to incorporate the museum more fully into the festivities.

Celebrating Buena Vista’s Old West and mining heritage, Gold Rush Days has been a signature town event since 1950. The festival features live music, a beer garden, artisan vendors, activities for kids, and plenty more to keep entertained.

This year the famous annual toilet seat races have heats divided by age groups from “young children up to the ‘Depends’ category,” according to the Chamber.

Highlights include the Buena Vista Pack Burro Race which is the final leg of the WBPR Triple Crown, live music from local musicians, and a lingerie show by the Madams of Central Colorado. The finish line for the burro race will be in the middle of the festival.

Visitors will also be able to capture memories at the Vintage Western Photo Booth sponsored by 3 Rocks Engineering (Saturday only) or get a chance to drop local figures in the dunk tank including County Commissioners P.T. Wood and Keith Baker. Trivia cards will be available at the festival entrance for a fee of $1 per card.

Each completed card will be entered for a chance to win $100 cash. The drawing for the winning will be done at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 13. Sponsors include Hi-Lonesome Boutique and Su Casa! Furniture & Sleep Shop.

Buttercup crossing the finish line for a first-place victory at the 2019 Buena Vista Burro Race. Photo by Sandy Hobbs

Near the end of a summer packed with events bigger than before, Gold Rush Days promises to continue the trend. Check out the full event schedule below to help plan your days:

Saturday, August 12

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Artisan Vendors
Food Trucks
Beer Garden
Live Music
Vintage Costumed Old Western Photo Booth

1:30 p.m.
Toilet Seat Races

Sunday, August 13

9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Artisan Vendors
Food Trucks
Beer Garden
Live Music
Dunk Tank

10:00 a.m.
Triple Crown Final Leg Burro Race begins followed immediately by the Poop Square Contest

Full Dunk Tank Schedule Sunday, August 13
*This is a fundraiser for Buena Vista High School (BVHS) Cross Country.

9:00 a.m.  Adam Bright, BVHS Athletic Director
10:00 a.m.  Greg Perrin, Coach
11:00 a.m.   Adam Fuller, Coach
12:00 noon  P.T. Wood, Chaffee County Commissioner
12:30 p.m.  Maggie Huyck, BV Chamber
1:00 p.m.   Heath Johnson, Coach
1:30 p.m.  Keith Baker, Chaffee County Commissioner
2:00 p.m. Liz Barnaby, BVHS Principal
3:00 p.m. Heather Rupska, BV Chamber CEO

The 73rd Annual Gold Rush Days is presented by V3 Custom Homes and The First Colorado Land Office.