Programs & Events

There are plenty of opportunities to safely explore and experience area history this summer, including outdoor guided tours, the Wheeler/Stallard Museum,  the Holden/Marolt Mining & Ranching Museum, Independence Ghost Town, and Ashcroft Ghost Town.

Advance registration is required for all programs and events (with the exception of the Ice Cream Social). Current public health protocols are observed. More information at aspenhistory.org or 970.925.3721.

Highlands Sky Ride in 1980
Aspen Historical Society, Aspen Times Collection

Annual Ice Cream Social
Saturday, August 7th | 2 pm– 4 pm
Wheeler/Stallard Museum
Free event admission / $3 ice cream bowls / $5 spiked “Aspen Crud” milkshakes
Guests of all ages are invited to celebrate the longstanding tradition of a community ice cream social in Aspen! The free event features music, a presentation of “A Briefly Complete History of Aspen 2.0” (the wildly popular and newly updated crash course in Aspen history featuring song, dance, and character presentations), lawn games, museum access, and most importantly, ice cream bowls replete with toppings! Boozy milkshakes for adults are available for a small fee. Since the mining era in Aspen, ice cream socials have been a popular summer gathering in the community.

3 pm: “A Briefly Complete History of Aspen 2.0” performance
2-4 pm: ice cream bar, lawn games & Museum access

The Ice Cream Social is made possible by generous underwriters Obermeyer Wood Investment Counsel and Paradise Bakery.

History Hike (Green Mountain)
Saturday, August 14 | 9 am – 12 pm
Meet at the Farwell Mill turnout on Hwy 82
Advance reservations required at aspenhistory.org, purchase online beginning June 1
limit 10 hikers
$10/Free for Lixiviator level and above members
Adventure over the streams and through the woods to Independence’s lesser-known and secluded sister ghost town, home to several old miners’ cabins and the leftovers of a once-bustling mining operation. Meet at the Farwell Mill parking lot, mile marker 56.5 on Highway 82 up Independence Pass.

Mead Metcalf Book Signing & Reception
Tuesday, August 17 | 4 pm – 5:30 pm
Wheeler/Stallard Museum
FREE event, books will be available for purchase
Aspen Historical Society is honored to host Mead Metcalf for a reception and book signing for Mead’s new memoir The Music Man: My Life and Times at Aspen’s Crystal Palace. The recently published work narrates the storied career of the famed impresario and founder of the Crystal Palace, which he opened in 1957. Armed with a singular musical talent and gift for entertaining, Mead turned the unique dinner theater into one of Aspen’s premier destinations over the next fifty-one years. Though the Palace closed in 2008, it remains an inextricable part of Aspen’s history. In his captivating memoir, Mead tells the story of his life and times at the Crystal Palace through photographs, songs, and anecdotes.

This special event will include light refreshments, a few songs and stories from Mead, and individual book signing.

Twilight Cemetery Tour
Monday, August 23 | Red Butte Cemetery
Sign up for your preferred time slot, limit 10 per tour: 6 pm, 6:15 pm, 6:30 pm, 6:45 pm, 7 pm, 7:15 pm and 7:30 pm
$15, advance registration required, purchase online beginning June 1
As the sun sets, you’ll hear stories from some of the cemetery’s most notable “residents” through museum theatre-style character performances. Learn about these former citizens of Aspen and their marks on history on a stroll through the town’s storied Red Butte Cemetery at twilight.

History on Tap: Walls CAN Talk, Zupancis Cabin Restoration
Thursday, September 16th | 5:30 – 7 pm
Holden/Marolt Mining & Ranching Museum

$15 (ticket includes one beer, $5 extra beer), advance registration required, purchase online beginning June 1
Join AHS for a panel discussion about the extensive Zupancis homestead buildings restoration project that is ongoing at the Holden/Marolt Mining & Ranching Museum property. From preserved runs of Victorian wallpaper to asbestos-laden walls, conservation projects are always an adventure! Moderated by AHS Curator Lisa Hancock, panelists include expert architectural conservator Natalie Feinberg Lopez, former City of Aspen Historic Preservation Officer Amy Simon, and project architect and AHS trustee Charles Cunniffe. The program will include insight into historical restoration best practices, as well as details about the work accomplished thus far on the miner’s-cabin-turned-Victorian-era-home, shed, and barn.
Part of the History on Tap series, where history meets beer!