It what sounds like one of the most unlikely things to happen, the rambunctious "Frozen Dead Guy Days," famously held in Nederland, will now take place in Estes Park.

As crazy as it does sound, this could end up making the event bigger and better than it has ever been over its 20 year history. Is Estes Park, or even Loveland for that matter, ready for the event?

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For me, when I think of Nederland, I think of "hippies." Folks that live more "off the grid" than on. I'm sure that is a very broad representation of the small town, but that's just how I feel. To find that the "Frozen Dead Guy Days" festival is coming to Estes Park and the Stanley Hotel, just seems to me, to be a dichotomy.

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Started in 2002, "Frozen Dead Guy Days" began as a small event held after the ski season; over the years, it's just kept getting bigger and bigger. The last festival, in March of 2022, saw 20,000 people come to Nederland. Nederland officials felt that the festival's owners weren't giving the town its due respect, so Nederland told the festival's owners said that they'd no longer allow "Frozen Dead Guy Days" to happen there.

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Now, according to CBS Colorado, the festival is owned by the man who owns the Stanley Hotel, John Cullen. Cullen and The Stanley Hotel have been making big moves in the last few years; they'll be putting in the Stanley Film Center, and they recently purchased the hotel across from the Stanley, to expand their campus.

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Cullen plans to hold "Frozen Dead Guy Days" over St. Patrick's Day Weekend (which is roughly the same timeframe the event is normally held) to help boost the Estes Park economy, during what has been a "slow" time of year.

Cullen's Grand Heritage Hotel Group has invested well over $30 million into the Stanley Hotel and its properties; it would seem he has plenty of money to manage "Frozen Dead Guy Days" properly. Curiosity is "killing the cat" when it comes to the price that Cullen paid to take over the festival.

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LINGERING QUESTIONS

  • Will the Estes festival keep the coffin and hearse races?
  • Who will the big musical act be that Cullen is planning on bringing in?
  • How do the people of Estes Park really feel about the event coming to town?

You can visit the current website for "Frozen Dead Guy Days," but since the event has new ownership, it's not currently up to date.

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