Bent's Old Fort
National Historic Site Colorado


2020 Schedule of Events Note: Events are subject to change. Check this website or phone (719) 383-5010 for details and more information about these and other special events.

Narrator with train rider on board the Southwest Chief
Trails and Rails Volunteer with train rider on Southwest Chief.


Frontier Skills Day

March 21, 2020

Adults are invited to take on various roles at the fort for a day. Be a hunter, blacksmith, trader, carpenter, laborer, or domestic. Space is limited; pre-registration required. Call (719) 383-5026 for information and application. Registration opens on January 2, 2020.

Trails and Rails Trips

May 9 - August 30, 2020

Volunteers narrate excursions aboard Amtrak’s Southwest Chief departing La Junta, CO on Saturdays and Sundays for day trips to Las Vegas, NM. Make travel arrangements through Amtrak. For more information, call (719) 383-5023. (Trips are subject to cancellation due to late running trains.)

Santa Fe Trail Encampment*

June 5-7, 2020

One of the park’s main living history events for the year will feature historic interpretations of the Santa Fe Trail with a focus on the summer of 1843. Tensions are rising as raiders sanctioned by the Republic of Texas are raiding Mexican caravans along the trail. Experience the hey-day of the trail through ongoing demonstrations. Camps, set up near the fort, will be open for touring. For more information, call (719) 383-5023.

Old-Fashioned 4th*

July 3-4, 2020

Enjoy a weekend of patriotic festivities including black powder firing demonstrations, orations, games, and refreshments as the post recreates Independence Day of 1843, when John C. Fremont’s 2nd Expedition arrived at the fort. For more information, call (719) 383-5023.

Kids' Quarters

July 18, 2020

Children, ages 7 to 11, get to “step back in time” and experience the life of a fort employee, customer, or visitor. Pre-registration is required. Call (719) 383-5026 for an application or print one off from the park website starting May 1, 2019.
Fort plaza lit up by bonfire light
Fires light up the fort plaza and members of a cannon crew during the candlelight tours.

Photo courtesy of Tom Long

Fur Trade Encampment*

October 23-25, 2020

Although better known for its role in the buffalo robe trade, Bent, St. Vrain, & Co. were also heavily involved in the trade for beaver pelts, especially earlier in the fort’s history. Experience the sights, sounds, and smells of the beaver trade. Interact with trappers, in addition to the regular fort residents. For more information, call (719) 383-5023.

Traditional Holiday Celebration*

December 4-5, 2019

Witness the holiday pleasures and pastimes of the 1840s at an isolated trading post. Period games, foods, and festivities will enliven the fort. Reservations are required for the evening candlelight tours, phone (719) 383-5026 starting November 1, 2020.

*In order to defray costs, the park will charge $5 per person, ages 6 and up, during major special events. In 2020 those dates are: Santa Fe Trail Encampment, June 5-7; Old-Fashioned 4th, July 3-4; Fur Trade Encampment, October 23-24; and Traditional Holiday Celebration, December 4-5.


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Last updated: January 7, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

35110 State Highway 194 E.
La Junta, CO 81050


(719) 383-5010

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