Historic Old Colorado City (OCC) is a region unto itself – it is part of Colorado Springs that hearkens back to its founding days in the mid 1800’s. OCC is a beautiful, historic district about eight acres in size, and it’s located right where Hwy 24 runs from Colorado Springs into Manitou Springs, and thence up the pass into the mountains.
The city used to be called El Dorado(!) before it was renamed Colorado City and became the first permanent, real town, which happened in 1859.
The region itself has evolved greatly over the last century and a half. OCC used to be a hub for mining outfitters, the Colorado Midland Railroad, and farmers and ranchers. As it became more established, libraries and schools were founded. The Pikes Peak Library District library outlet in Old Colorado City is still in an old and architecturally accurate building. Now, the main street in the district (Colorado Ave) is home to the largest collection of independently owned shops in Colorado Springs. The street is lined with boutiques, restaurants, tourist shops, and other local businesses.
Territory Days is a three day celebration and remembrance of the Old Colorado City’s history – it boasts everything from era costuming and historic re-enactments to craft fairs and beer gardens. The three day festival is located right along Colorado Ave. from 23rd to 27th street. There will be a myriad of activities for all ages, so be sure to plan your vacation at a time when you and your family can enjoy the activities together!
For those who prefer a quieter, less crowded experience of a historic district, check out the First Friday Art Walk. On the first Friday of every month, April through December, local art shops keep their doors open late, to allow visitors and locals alike to tour art galleries and view demonstrations by the artists.
However you choose to experience the area, don’t forget to include Old Colorado City in your vacation plans! Savor an afternoon walking down the sidewalks, window shopping or stopping by boutiques. Get an evening out to soak in local artwork and finish up with a glass of wine at Dat’s Italian. Or, bring your whole family for a day of food and festivity during the Territory Days!
And as always, our quiet cottages and houses will be waiting to welcome you back to quieter neighborhoods for a relaxing evening.