City Spotlight: Estes Park, Colorado

By Mira Tempin, October 1, 2018

The breathtaking scenery of Estes Park, Colorado, is everlasting. As the base camp for Rocky Mountain National Park, groups can hike; spot deer, elk and unusual wildlife; go whitewater rafting; and more.

“Our connection to nature is unrivaled,” says Elena Patton, who’s in charge of guest relations at Visit Estes Park. “There’s nothing like walking out of a conference room and being surrounded by Colorado’s majestic mountain ranges and abundant wildlife to energize a group and inspire creative thinking.”

While perhaps not as scenic as what Mother Nature provides, the new Estes Park Center is where thoughts come together. The facility has 33,000 square feet of event space, including both indoor and outdoor venues (it would be cruel to block the view). It is part of Estes Park Events Complex, which has more than 70,000 square feet of flexible meeting space.

The conference center is attached to The Ridgeline Hotel and two large-scale event facilities totaling 45,000 square feet of multipurpose event space.

With modern amenities and scenic surroundings, Estes Park Events Complex has hosted numerous association, corporate, religious and spiritual retreats. Ram Katha, a nine-day prayer for world peace taught by India’s spiritual leader, Morari Bapu, made Estes its only U.S. stop on a worldwide tour in 2017.

Beyond the impact of 700 guests utilizing lodging in Estes for nine days, the event brought the town and complex worldwide exposure through livestreaming. Locally, 2.5 tons of food were donated by Crossroads Ministry to feed the Estes Valley.

The Sky’s the Limit

Once outside the events complex, 42 acres of fairgrounds are used for festivals, rodeos and large-scale outdoor events.

The built-in entertainment doesn’t stop there. Walking around the charming downtown makes for a fine activity. Local shopkeepers offer handmade, artisanal products and regional fare, providing a flair of authenticity.

“Experiences range from playing a round of golf among a herd of elk to hiking and snowshoeing in the national park to tasting craft beers and whiskey in the downtown area,” says Patton.

Ideas include touring Estes Park’s last remaining working cattle ranch, MacGregor Ranch, to feel a sense of history. Attendees can also walk along the bench-lined riverwalk and lovely sculpture garden for serenity and tranquility.

Inside the Events Center

Events Center: Authentic Colorado Mountain decor adorns the Grand Lobby, immediately signaling retreaters are in for, well, a treat. The multipurpose Event Hall is 25,754 square feet of unobstructed event space. Versatile enough to host a trade show, the venue also provides the intimacy required for catered meals. Upstairs lies a meeting room accommodating up to 46 attendees and an executive boardroom seating up to 37.

The Pavilion: For a breath of fresh air—literally—the almost 20,000-sq.-ft. adjacent space is available for receptions and picnics. From a practical standpoint, it also serves as a thoroughfare to move large equipment.

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