The 3rd annual nonprofit Telluride Fire Festival it taking place next weekend. Having made its debut in January 2015, the event, inspired by Burning Man, is an annual celebration of community, art and fire, which draws 70,000 people to the Nevada desert every Labor Day weekend. The goal was to bring the Burning Man ethos to Telluride along with the larger-than-life fire art to the region to allow more people the ability to see, interact with, and create this visual magic. Dynamic art performances take place each evening on the public plaza in Mountain Village and on Telluride’s historic Main Street, free to all. Additional ticketed entertainment is available to guests after the free, outdoor art and performances. Free workshops in both welding and fire dancing also take place. The Festival was able to offer the free outdoor art and workshops through generous donations, grants, and sponsorships.
The Festival culminates in a fundraising Fire Ball, set in a unique venue atop the gondola at Station St. Sophia featuring 30-foot high vaulted ceilings. This location is ideal for both in-town and Mountain Village guests. This fete, where audience will become artist, offers a truly unique experience, combining exhibition with performance, and commemorating all forms of artistry. Attendees will choose between intimate lounge areas and dance spaces, with a cash bar featuring cocktails, wine, and appetizers. The ticket price includes access to the Fire Sculpture Garden atop chair 7.
Fire artists and entertainers come from all over to participate in this event including award-winning artist, Kenny Browning. He’s a master gas fitter, licensed flame effects operator and welder. His two art cars, The Roachster and The Iron Maiden, have won many awards and have most recently been featured at the Trinidad, CO ARTOCADE—the annual Art Car festival and parade. Kenny’s other claim to fame is his wildly entertaining Firecracker Hat, invented in 2001. Since then, he and his crew have performed at numerous public events including Discovery Green, the Texas Regional Burn Flipside, Art Outside, The Luminaria Festival in San Antonio, and the Orange Show Art Car Parade in Houston. Kenny has also displayed art and participates regularly at Burning Man. He is also the creator of the Flaming Frame—a fiery photo opportunity for attendees of this year’s Fire Festival.
Another renowned performer coming this year is Sparky Anderson, a volunteer Firefighter, Flames Operator, and Event Safety Coordinator for fire events across the country. In his free time Sparky works in the automobile industry as a fashion and automotive photographer. He’s contributed his time to bring fire arts to events such as Burning Man, Art Outside, Apogaea, Lakes of Fire, Myschievia, Freezer Burn, Glowarama, and Burning Flipside. Sparky is the master creator of the Flamebeaux Rodeo and Dorothy—A fire tornado that rises 24 feet in the sky—Dorothy will lure you to the Mountain Village like a moth to the flame. Dorothy was the illumination for the Fire of Fires Temple at Burning Man in 2009. Based in Houston, he is excited to participate at Telluride Fire Festival in January with his fiery art.
Learn more about the various events taking place over Fire Festival:
Friday, January 20th
Saturday, January 21st
Sunday, January 22 nd
For more information on each event, to purchase tickets or reserve spots, and to learn more about the history of the Telluride Fire Festival, visit the Fire Festival website . If you haven’t booked your trip to Telluride yet, The Peaks Resort & Spa , Telluride's only ski-in/ski-out and golf-in/golf-out resort, is a short, free gondola ride away from the historic Town of Telluride, or explore Telluride's other great lodging options and our trip planning guide .