Situated along Northern Colorado’s Front Range, Greeley is a city that values community and innovation. You’ll find countless locally-owned restaurants and businesses downtown, as well as frequent community events.
It’s the most populated city and the county seat of Weld County with about 108,795 residents in 2020. What started as a quiet farming town is now an agricultural and economic hub of the area. It’s also home to the University of Northern Colorado, founded on April 1st, 1889.
Greeley sits at 4,675 feet of elevation and has many outdoor spaces and parks to enjoy in town. There’s a myth that when you smell manure in the air in Denver, there’s a storm coming that’s blowing air from Greeley.
In 1870, an agricultural editor for the New York Tribune visited the area of Greeley and fell in love with the beauty and views of nearby mountains. He stayed in town and had the vision to create a utopian-esque community.
The namesake of the town, Horace Greeley, was the owner of the tribune at the time, and only visited the town once. He never returned, but the name stuck. Greeley was officially incorporated in 1886 with just over 2,000 residents.
As the town continued to grow, agriculture remained an important economic sector. Many immigrants were hired to maintain the farms, and sugar beets were a popular crop. The start of the 20th century brought new construction to Greeley in the form of both residential and commercial buildings.
The 1950s were a turning point for the area. Business was booming, and infrastructure for the town blossomed. There were many new houses, businesses, and government buildings added to Greeley during this period. The town has continued to slowly expand and improve itself in the last few decades.
Colorado Model Railroad Museum – Visitors rave about the thoughtfulness and detail of this model railroad exhibit. The mainline that has been constructed by volunteers from all over the country spans over 20 miles in scaled distance and has plenty of hidden gems to discover. This is a great spot to visit and is entertaining for any age group.
Island Grove Regional Park – 145 acres of multi-use space has become the epicenter of Greeley’s popular events and festivals. There are multiple pavilions, a playground, an arena and grandstand area, and even a livestock building.
Union Colony Civic Center – Hosting over 100 performances per year for the residents of northern Colorado, this performing arts venue always has something interesting going on. From comedy shows and Broadway musicals to Philharmonic performances and local dance troupes, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Read about the top things to do in Greeley.
- Missile Site Park is a great spot to park your RV for a weekend getaway. There are covered picnic areas, a playground, and nice views of the surrounding area.
- The Platte River Fort has campsites along the river, just to the east of town. They also have yurts and a covered wagon to rent if you prefer to glamp.
- Read about the camping near Greeley and Pawnee National Grassland.
- Poudre Ponds is a recreational fishery that has one pond open for shore fishing or from a small, motorized boat. It is well-stocked with trout, bluegill, yellow perch, and more.
- Windsor Lake is perfect if you’re looking for something a little bigger. You’ll also find trout here, along with catfish, crappie, and even walleye if you’re lucky.
Hiking – The Poudre River Trail is a local favorite for stretching your legs and getting some fresh air. It is 21 miles in total, with multiple access points. The trail is paved, meaning it is perfect for walking, biking, and rollerblading.
Doubletree by Hilton – With everything from an on-site restaurant to Italian linens and dedicated family services, the Doubletree has you covered for a great stay.
County Inn & Suites – This cozy, well-designed, pet-friendly hotel is a great option for any type of traveler. The rooms are spacious and suited for comfort, and even come with a waffle maker to start your day off right!
Currier Inn Bed and Breakfast – A three-story Victorian-style home with a complimentary breakfast each morning. The wrap-around porch and large outdoor space make it perfect for hosting cocktail hours or other small events.
Read about the best hotels in Greeley.
The Mad Cow Saloon – Their menu has a great selection of pub fare and plenty of beers on tap to go along with your meal.
Santeramo’s Pizza House & Italian Food – Serving up the same authentic Italian recipes since 1962, this is the spot in town for pizza and pasta.
Lucky Fins – Their focus on fresh fish and friendly service makes Lucky Fins the perfect spot to grab lunch or dinner with the whole family. In addition to fish and sushi, they have great steak and burgers.
Mar – Blarney on the Block – Each year the downtown strip of Greeley turns green for St. Patricks Day. There is a parade and most bars serve drinks and food on their outdoor patios.
May-Oct – Farmers Market – This outdoor summer market is held weekly on Saturdays from 8 am to 12 pm at the Depot. Come out and browse a huge variety of local produce, baked goods, sundried items, coffee, and more. During the winter, you can find a smaller market held at Zoe’s Cafe on the first and third Saturday of each month.
May-Sep – Friday Fest – Each Friday all summer, downtown Greeley fills with live music, vendors, and a strong sense of community. There are different themed nights, ending with Mexican Independence Day in September.
Jun – Greeley Blues Jam – Weekend of live blues music at Island Grove Regional Park. This is a fantastic music festival to kick off the summer in early June.
Jun-Jul – Greeley Stampede – Two-week-long July 4th celebration that goes back around one hundred years, featuring a rodeo, monster trucks, country music, parades, and fireworks.
Sep – OktoBrewfest – The town’s take on the popular German festival, this fun-filled weekend is complete with plenty of beer, bratwurst, and live entertainment.
Oct – Trick or Treat Street – Held a few days before Halloween, this safe, family-friendly trick or treat event has over 40 local organizations handing out candy. There are also games and prizes for everyone to enjoy.
Dec – Festival of Trees – One week of tree-decorating fun each year, this festival is a local favorite event. The lobbies of the Union Colony Civic Center fill up with uniquely decorated trees by community organizations and groups to be judged and hopefully awarded a prize.
Activities near Greeley
- Big Thompson River
- Cache La Poudre River
- Cache La Poudre River National Heritage Area
- Pawnee Buttes (62mi)
- Pawnee National Grassland (58mi)
- South Platte River
- Dearfield (26mi)
- Riverside Reservoir (31mi)
- Centennial Village Museum (2mi)
- Colorado Model Railroad Museum (1mi)
- Greeley History Museum (1mi)
- The Meeker Home Museum (<1mi)
- Campo Esperanza (4mi)
- East Memorial Park (3mi)
- Island Grove Regional Park (1mi)
- Josephine Jones Park (5mi)
- Poudre Ponds (3mi)
- Briggsdale (30mi)
- Denver (56mi)
- Fort Collins (25mi)
- Johnstown (16mi)
- Keenesburg (33mi)
- Kersey (10mi)
- Longmont (35mi)
- Loveland (12mi)
- Severance (14mi)
- Windsor (14mi)
Visit Greeley’s official website.