I saw my first patch of yellow aspen leaves on the mountain side between Avon and Edwards this week. Colors are barely changing, but it's happening nonetheless. I hesitate to say fall is taking over Vail Valley, but a chill is in the air, folks!
Summer-like daytime temperatures will continue well into September, however. This weekend's weather predictions point to high 70s and sunshine. Looking at the 10-day forecast, temperature highs continue in to 70s all the way through.
With crowds thinning out as kids go back to school, this is a great time to enjoy Vail recreation, dining, nightlife and shopping. I'll certainly get some hikes under my belt over the next few months. And don't forget — this is a great time to think about ski conditioning. You don't want weak legs come November's start to ski-and-ride season.
With that in mind, here are my top picks for Vail Valley This Week.
Photo: By Barry Eckhaus, photo taken near Piney Lake, north of Vail
Live Music This Week
Start off the weekend early by heading to Boxcar Restaurant & Bar's Acoustics & Ales performance in Avon on Thursday, August 24, from 6 to 9 p.m. during dinner hours. This week's musical artist is Lake County Rain. Joey DeFrancesco will peform jazz at Vail Square in Lionshead Village, also on Thursday. Tickets are $25 to $50.
The free Friday Afternoon Club at Maya Restaurant in Avon will host the Bill McKay Band this week on Friday, August 25. Free Funky Fridays at Edwards Riverwalk Backyard will feature music by The New Master Sounds.
Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek will host The Purple Xperience, a Prince tribute band, on Saturday, August 26. Tickets are $48.
Vail Jazz performances are planned for Vail Farmers' Market and Art Show from noon to 3 p.m., then again at 8 p.m. at The Remedy Bar in Vail Village.
More Things To Do
Other types of activities — spanning shopping, recreation and creativity — are prevalent as well.
Take a Pearl Knotting Jewelry Class at Rocky Mountain Silver and Beads in Edwards on Thursday, August 24, at 11 a.m. Another class focused on Traditional Loom Jewelry is scheduled for Saturday, August 26, at 11 a.m. Then on Monday the shop will host a Funky Cuff Jewelry Class at 3 p.m.
Eye Pieces of Vail is hosting a Shamballa Eyewear Trunk Show complete with an optometrist on Thursday from 2 to 6 p.m.
Head over to West Vail Liquor Mart on Friday, August 25, from 4 to 8 p.m. to taste Tito's vodka. It's free to taste for customers 21 and older.
Vail Vitality Center at Vail Mountain Lodge is offering Therapeutic Yoga for Everybody, a three-part series on Saturday and Sunday, August 26 and 27.
Photo: Shamballa Eyewear, Courtesy of Eye Pieces of Vail
The Motet will perform at Vilar Performing Arts Center next Thursday, August 31. The Beaver Creek show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets are only $30.
Hidden Gems Wine Dinner at La Tour Restaurant and Bar in Vail Village is also on August 31. This is a tasting event focused on wine education and a discussion with sommelier Kainoa Guerin.
The 11th annual Gourmet on Gore is Friday, September 1 through Monday, September 4. This culinary festival is a Vail destination event including live music, demonstrations, kids' activities and more.
Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals will perform with a special guest at Avon's Nottingham Park Pavilion on Friday, September 15. The show starts at 6 p.m., and tickets are $38 to $148. The concert is a perfect evening event as it matches up with Vail Oktoberfest weekend.
Photo: Gourmet on Gore Facebook