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17 Mile House Farm Park

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Admission Fee

Free

Features

  1. ADA Accessible
  2. Bike Rack
  3. Picnic Tables
  4. Port-a-let
  5. Public Parking
  6. Trail Access: Cherry Creek Regional Trail

2022 Open Houses—Saturdays from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

From April-October 2022 we feature rotating tours of the house and a variety of activities and demonstrations. Events are free but registration is required due to capacity limits. Registration is open approximately 2-3 weeks before each event.


  • April 9: Meet the Beekeepers! 
  • May 14: Water Bugs in Cherry Creek
  • June 11: Wool Spinning Learn more and register
  • July 9: Outdoor Nature Program
  • August 13: Past Times Music
  • September 10: Native Plants
  • October 8: Dairy Day


Group Tours & School Visits

Visitors are welcome to walk around the farm area and enjoy the property from dawn to dusk. The house and barn interiors are open for group tours and school visits by appointment only. For more information, please contact ksear@arapahoegov.com or 720-874-6726.


About the 17 Mile House Farm Park

Visitors can step back in time at the 17 Mile House, a 160-year old farm which served as an important resting stop for pioneers traveling on the Cherokee/Smoky Hill wagon trails in the 1860s.

This County-designated heritage area includes a historic house, red barn, silo, milk house and loafing shed, which were restored to their known condition in the early 1900s, as well as two windmills and 32 acres of open space. The Farm Park also features a trailhead connecting to the Cherry Creek Regional Trail, picnic tables, a parking lot and a Port-a-let. 

Open Spaces staff member Karen Sear is interviewed in a January 2022 segment of Connected Colorado, about the historic 17 Mile House Farm Park in Centennial and her own personal connection to its local history.

Photography

Photography is allowed at the 17 Mile House Farm Park.

 General Rules

  • Stay on the paths to protect the landscape.
  • Dogs are allowed but must remain on a leash.
  • Dispose of trash properly.
  • Photographers should not block or limit access of the site to the public.
  • Refrain from hanging items on the buildings.
  • No large props are allowed.

Note: Access to 17 Mile can be closed off due to maintenance or tours without advanced notice.


Weddings and Events

The site and buildings are not currently available for rental use by the public.


History and Timeline

The 17 Mile House has a long and significant history. When the 1859-1860 gold rush resulted in large-scale settlement of the state, a series of inns emerged along Cherry Creek to accommodate travelers and freighters. 

These "mile houses" were located every 3-4 miles along the Cherokee/Smoky Hill wagon trails from Kansas, all named based on their distance to the intersection of Colfax and Broadway. 

Upon arrival, travelers could get a meal, spend the night, rest their animals and have minor repairs made to their coaches or wagons. Out of the original six mile houses, only 17 Mile House and 4 Mile House remain. 

With arrival of the railroad in 1882, pioneer traffic along the wagon trails ended, and so did the need for mile houses. For the next 100 years, hard-working families owned and farmed the land. The 17 Mile House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, and the County acquired the property in 2001. 

Download a timeline of 17 Mile House history

Arapahoe County developed a 17 Mile House Farm Park Master Plan in 2007 to serve as a guide for future management and development of the open space park.


Partnerships


Continue the Homestead Experience

Each year at the Arapahoe County Fair, 17 Mile House staff and volunteers offer Western heritage experiences and hands-on educational activities in the homestead area. Take a look at these great homestead resources, covering everything from animals and arts and crafts to historical farm programs, gardening and more.


Volunteer at 17 Mile House

The property provides a family-friendly connection to an 1860s farm. Volunteers lead tours, interpret historical and natural history, and provide hands-on experiences. Volunteers also create interpretive displays, maintain the gardens, and care for the historic collection of artifacts. 

SIGN UP to volunteer.