If you’re looking for something fun to do over the Labor Day weekend, you might consider checking out Mile High Flea Market. Spanning 80 acres, the outdoor flea market and enclosed shops feature 2500 sellers each weekend.
Founded in 1976, Mile High is Denver’s oldest flea market located off I-76 and 88th Avenue, about 10 minutes from downtown. The venue welcomes around a million visitors every year. When you walk through the entrance, you’re greeted by the smell of fresh kettle corn and smoked turkey legs. Families filter about, planning their routes to visit each vendor. Children enjoy the rides and arcade games. There are plenty of things to do with its year-round farmers market, beer carts, kid’s rides, live music and diverse food stalls. There’s something for the whole family.
“This is a place where families come for the things they need at affordable prices,” said Mile High’s Vice President of Marketing Jessica Jeffes. “They can enjoy the time they spend here with kids on rides and fun fair food, and leave with lasting memories and they can’t wait to come back again and again. We see many generational families come out. So many people came out years ago with their grandparents and now they are out here with their kids.”
Sellers display their wares in rented spaces and are encouraged to bring anything from furniture, clothes and electronics to makeup, collectibles and homemade products.
Cutique, a small local accessories shop in the garage sale area run by Kelly and Gordon has only been at the flea market for about three weeks. Cutique sells hair accessories such as scrunchies and hair clips,
“It’s been really [good],” Gordon said. “Everyone is super friendly here and willing to check out what stuff we have.”
“It’s definitely been a learning experience, but it’s pretty enjoyable,” Kelly added.
Colossal Closet is one of the longer-lasting stores at the flea market, selling items such as Alpaca wool ponchos and accessories. Owner Lateeci has been selling her products at Mile High since 2014. She currently occupies one of the enclosed shops in space N30.
“I see quite a lot of business generated being out here at the Mile High Flea market,” she said. “You meet new people, and you meet old people. And then you meet your newcomers too.”
With all the activities at the flea market, it might get overwhelming on your first time. The best thing to do is to grab a map and start at one end. On the map, enclosed stores—which sell things like shoes, clothes, electronics and children’s toys—are marked in blue. Several shops carry the same items, so you don’t always have to buy something the first time you see it. Take a look at a few of the other shops, because you might find it elsewhere for cheaper. As a bonus, you won’t have to carry your purchases around for as long.
The garage sale section of Mile High is marked on the map in orange. Among the waves of outside tables, it’s possible to find some real gems. These sellers mostly have vintage, collectible and handmade items.
The farmer’s market has a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables and local honey. You can also grab some roasted green chilies, roasted corn and locally-made pickles. If you’re worried about having to lug around all the goodies you buy for several hours, Mile High has carts available for rent. The market area also has restrooms and refreshments located throughout the venue.
The flea market has many food places to choose from, such as the Marketplace Grill which serves breakfast burritos and traditional breakfast until 10:30 a.m. They also serve a variety of lunch items like chicken nuggets, nachos and hamburgers until closing. You’ll find pizza and artisan sandwiches at Market Brothers, authentic street tacos at Paco’s Tacos and delicious cheese-covered potatoes at Papa’s Patatas. Turkey legs are served up hot and juicy at Turkey’s Last Stand. But prepare for a long line as you wait for the iconic Mile High Flea Market food item. If you’re looking for something more sugary, stop at Delectable Sweet & Treats which serves shaved ice, ice cream and funnel cakes. You’ll also find alcoholic beverages like margaritas and micheladas at several carts.
Aside from food and items to buy, the flea market has many children’s rides. You can buy tickets to enjoy the rollercoaster, bumper cars, the Heritage Big Wheel or the Sizzler just to name a few. There’s also an arcade zone with claw machines and the classics, so make sure to bring some change! The games and rides provide a great break in between shopping and eating.
The flea market has many great deals and something for everyone. From clothing and accessories to musical instruments and skateboards. Many of the shops are cash only, but the market has several ATMs located around the venue.
Mile High Flea Market is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 7 a.m.-5 p.m. with a $3 entry fee. It starts to get busy at 9 a.m., so expect a long line to get in if you arrive after that. And make sure to pack some sunscreen!
The Mile High Flea Market is a cherished summer activity for those who grew up in Denver or the surrounding area. It’s a great opportunity to spend time with loved ones, and an even better chance to score some great deals. Mile High is certainly a must-see for locals and those visiting from out of town.