Frozen Dead Guy Days festival has new home in Estes Park

The Frozen Dead Guy Days festival is set to relocate to Estes Park after the relationship between the event and Nederland deteriorated this year.

Visit Estes Park confirmed they have partnered with the festival organizers and the Stanley Hotel. The story was originally reported by CBS Colorado.

Frozen Dead Guy Days officials initially said the event would not take place in 2023, but Visit Estes Park Chief Marketing Officer Heidi Barfels said there are tentative plans to hold the event on St. Patrick’s Day weekend, March 17-19.

“On behalf of our CEO Kara Franker I can confirm that The Stanley and Visit Estes Park are joining forces to save Frozen Dead Guy Days,” Barfels said in a statement. “The beloved festival outgrew its roots in Nederland and was canceled for 2023, but The Stanley and Visit Estes Park are keeping it alive and in Colorado. The Stanley will be the host hotel, and the plan is to keep the festival’s unique and weird vibe while also elevating it.”

Frozen Dead Guy Days officials and Nederland officials could not initially be reached for comment.

The event went on hiatus for two years following the COVID pandemic before returning in 2022.

But following the event’s return the relationship between festival organizers and Nederland, which has hosted the event for almost 30 years, began to sour.

In a letter to event organizers following the 2022 festival, Nederland officials accused the festival of “not adhering to the plans submitted, discussed and finalized during technical review committee meetings, ultimately creating confusion, disorganization, and safety concerns.”

Meanwhile, Frozen Dead Guy Days officials cited “a lack of partnership with the town of Nederland.”

While both sides expressed hope the event could return to Nederland, the agreement with Estes Park will put that on hold for at least a year.

Estes Park in the process of applying for a state grant from Colorado that was designed during the pandemic to save events and festivals.

The Stanley will host the Blue Ball, while the music performances and other events will take place at the Estes Park Events Complex. Proceeds will benefit workforce housing and childcare in Estes Park.

“The festival’s unique and weird vibe will remain the same, while also being elevated,” Barfels said.

One thing officials did not address is what will become of the actual frozen dead guy who inspired Frozen Dead Guy Days. “Grandpa” Bredo Morstoel remains frozen in a Tuff Shed in Nederland.

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