Winter in Colorado features special celebrations and festivals of all kinds.
Following are some of this year's top winter festivals. For more information or to learn about other Colorado winter events, visit colorado.com.
* Winter Brew Fest, Denver (Friday): A celebration of craft beverages from Colorado and beyond, the festival features live local music, food tastings and other entertainment.
* Snowdown, Durango (Jan. 30 to Feb. 3): Celebrate snow at this quirky annual festival, where this year's theme is “Get Your Geek On” iSnowdown 2.0.13. Guests will enjoy more than 60 unique and zany events, including an evening torchlight parade, ski softball tournament, Snowdown Balloon Rally, wine tasting, beard growing contest, Snowdown Follies, Bed Race, a fireworks show and more.
* Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival, Steamboat Springs (Feb. 6-10): This historic winter festival, celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, pays tribute to the area's skiing and ranching heritage and is a celebration of all things winter. Events include a snow sculpture contest, ski races, snow tubing, live entertainment and performances by the Steamboat Springs High School marching band on skis.
* WinterFest Weekend, Pagosa Springs (Feb. 7-10): Events include Nordic races for kids and adults, Anything Goes Downhill Sled Race, Snow Sculpting Contest, Snowshoe Stop and more.
* The Ski Joring & Crystal Carnival, Leadville (March 1-3): Ski joring is a competition in which a horse and rider pull a skier at a fast pace through a course that features gates, jumps and rings. Additional activities include a children's parade, Nordic and winter mountain bike races and more.
* Big Air on Elk, Crested Butte (March 9): An epic ski-jumping competition is held in the middle of its downtown. A snowmobile tows top local skiers and snowboarders, launching them off of a five-story, park-style jump.
— Compiled by staff writer Sue Story Truax