One event on February 9, 2019 at 2:00pm
The nation’s Sweetheart City, Loveland, Colorado, just got sweeter for Valentine’s Day with the launch of the inaugural Loveland Sweetheart Festival – Love Locks and Lights. For more than 70 years, Loveland has embraced sweethearts near and far and invites families and lovers across the world to gather in downtown Loveland to celebrate Valentine season for free fun Feb. 8-9, 2019.
Presented by the Loveland Chamber of Commerce and Visit Loveland Colorado, the festival will capitalize on the city’s rich history as the nation’s Sweetheart City and one of the top small art communities in the nation through art installations, attractions and contests.
Anchoring the event is one of the largest love lock sculptures in the U.S., produced by longtime Loveland resident, businessman and champion Doug Rutledge. This 10-foot-tall, 30-foot-wide steel LOVE sculpture will be introduced during the festival. Attendees can purchase a customizable love lock to secure on the sculpture.
“Loveland became the Sweetheart City more than 70 years ago thanks to the visionaries and dedicated stampers who send love around the world through the Valentine Re-Mailing Program,” said Mindy McCloughan, president and CEO of the Loveland Chamber of Commerce. “We are excited to bridge our love of art and Valentine’s Day by introducing our own take on the love lock tradition, giving visitors a permanent place in the Sweetheart City to express their love.”
After the event, the Loveland Visual Arts Commission-approved sculpture will be moved to its permanent home at the Loveland Chamber and Visitors Center, welcoming visitors as they drive into the city. As the sculpture fills with locks, new pieces will be added across the city. Collected love lock keys from the first sculpture will be melted down to form a second, unique love lock sculpture to be displayed in downtown Loveland.
“As the home of the Valentine Re-Mailing Program and as the welcome center for visitors to Loveland, the LOVE sculpture will be a beautiful welcome to our great city. It gives visitors one more reason to stop at the Visitors Center and learn more about things to do and ways to explore all different areas of Loveland,” said McCloughan. “This is just the beginning – the program will expand to our thriving downtown district next as well as other areas of town into the future.”
The new event features something for everyone – families, couples, beer and chocolate lovers, running lovers, art lovers, those who have lost a loved one, and forever loves. Additional festival highlights include:
Art installations and interactive art displays, including a lit up 25-foot heart and a display of the complete Loveland With HeART collection
A mapping projection laser show each night
Sweetheart Love Art Show at the 4th Street Gallery
For the Love of Chocolate, Beer and Wine tastings including local valentine beer Bleeding Heart
Snowzilla Jr., the only inflatable toboggan slide in the U.S. and Canada
Sweetheart City 5K race
Light the Love Luminaries to honor lost loved ones
Bands & other musical performances
Contests where children up to age four can participate in the Little Miss Valentine and Little Mr. Cupid contest
Additional details will become available later this year. Learn more at Loveland.org.