The 83rd annual Durango Fiesta Days will celebrate local history and culture through the weekend with a parade and rodeos.
At 10 a.m. Saturday, there will be a parade on Main Avenue from College Drive to 12th Street. There will also be a queen coronation at 6:15 p.m. before the rodeo, which will start at 7 p.m.
Rodeos will also be held at 1 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at the La Plata County Fairgrounds, 2500 Main Ave.
Attendance at the annual event has declined since the loss of horse racing at the old fairgrounds, but Fiesta Days continues to have good visitor attendance, said Cindi Brevik, president of the Durango Fiesta Days committee.
She said the committee does not have an official count on the number of attendees but estimated there are between 3,000 and 7,000. Visitors not only spend time at Fiesta Days but also spend money locally on food, rafting and other activities.
Fiesta Days started in Durango in 1935 as a celebration of the tri-ethinic heritages of the area, bringing Native American, Spanish and Anglo communities together. People would camp between Animas City and Durango along the river banks for two to three weeks and share their cultures through food and dancing.
It was originally known as the Spanish Trails Fiesta – but was renamed twice, changing its name in the 1980s to Fiesta Days. Brevik said Durango Fiesta Days is the longest continuous celebration in the Four Corners.
There will also be a food vendor village at the event – a callback to when early participants would share their different culture’s dishes.
Brevik advised participants to arrive hungry.