Denver Is Getting Sloppy

Denver, You’re Getting a Little Sloppy

I went to high school in Denver and when I say that there are moments when I’m shocked by the city’s growth I’m serious. I remember cruising around town, seriously, like in the movies. Going to teen clubs after answering a ridiculous number of questions and leaving my friend’s parents’ information with my mom. I remember working in Tabor Center downtown when it still had a food court and shopping at 5-7-9. I remember how safe and clean Denver was. Then, it grew. In this episode I talk share my thoughts on Denver’s grow and how Denver and Colorado remind me of the fun aunt who’s always a little sloppy. You know, the one who takes you out for your first drink behind your parents’ back and always has slightly smudged lipstick. Denver, you’re getting a little sloppy it’s time for an intervention.

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Thinking About Starting a Website?

It’s pretty simple to do and cheap! Start with Siteground and WordPress.org. With this winning combination you’ll own your own website by the end of the day. And, Siteground has easy to follow tutorials to help you with setting up your site. Also, don’t forget to grab 120 Awesome Blog Ideas from Ruth Soukup’s Elite Blog Academy today.

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Show Sponsor

This episode is sponsored by the following book “Time to Visit Denver” If you’re wondering what it’s like to visit Denver and the state of Colorado during COVID, I’ve put together a guide on what to expect. If you’re not interested in wearing a mask, we’re not interested in having you visit. Sorry not sorry.

Show Notes

  • Growth is always uncomfortable and in the case of Denver’s growth, I think it has caught a lot of long-term residents off-guard.
  • We were hicks and used to being considered fly over country.
  • People had no idea what was in Colorado other than mountains and skiing.
  • Then, the first waves of Californians and Texans looking for a nice place to live that cost less started moving in.
  • I’ll never forget being a little girl and meeting a lady from Texas who truly frightened me. She had a bouffant and blue-eye shadow. She was actually a nice lady but it was a lot to take in for a little kid used to Boulder hippies.
  • With the growth came more development, traffic, and those damn scooters.
  • Tagging became an extracurricular sport around town for some and the people who used to hangout and squat around town soon got overrun by an overwhelming number of homeless neighbors.
  • We legalized pot and even though things eventually calmed down, the first three years sucked. Seriously, they did.
  • In fact, even though it wasn’t a big deal to us that we embraced a number of progressive policies that sometimes even had me shaking my head in bemusement there was a point where I began to feel like we’d gotten a little sloppy.

What Is Lost in the Conversation about Colorado

  • I wish that there were more immediate conversations about the quality of life and how most residents love living here.
  • Or, that Colorado is consistently in the top 5 for healthiest Americans
  • But, sometimes it feels like anything goes here and people from other states have somehow gotten that memo not understanding that we do respect rules and regulations here in Colorado.
  • Yes, you can go topless as a woman in Colorado…but, that only happens a couple of times a year. Don’t take my word for it, check the law.
  • Yes, voters voted to decriminalized mushrooms in Denver. But, for medicinal purposes not just to do it. Check that law too!
  • Driving now involves constantly guessing what the other drivers are going to do because they’ve stopped signaling. Initially, I thought it was my imagination. Then, I started speaking with other drivers who confirmed that I wasn’t losing it. People had stopped using their signals.
  • All the freaking scooters. I’ll admit that I hate the scooters, I truly do. But, I hate the scooters because of what users have been doing.
    • Leaving their scooters in the middle of walkways that impede usage for wheelchair users, people with strollers, etc.
    • Zipping around in the street in giant scooter packs. I’ve only seen this in downtown Downtown Denver and I think that’s because of the GPS settings on the scooters.

So, with this list of sloppiness what’s the one thing that I wish would change ASAP. People, I need you to signal when driving. Seriously, I just need that one thing. I’m not psychic and if I was I would be making a ton of money reading fortunes. Denver, I love you even though you’re sloppy. Stay fun. Put your shirts back on.

Crush Walls

Crush Walls the Perfect Event During COVID

One of the most devastating aspects of life during a pandemic is the loss of unique experiences that make life fun. I feel this loss most acutely when I want to do something that celebrates the arts. The theaters are closed, concerts are basically shuttered for the next year and dance performances are now relegated to Dancing with the Stars which awkwardly enough includes Carol Baskins of Tiger King fame. Where’s your husband Carol? So, when Crush Walls started advertising that it was still happening I was so excited about it and this event continues to be one of the best art focused events hosted in Denver and rightfully deserves the praise that it gets.

Listen to the show

Show Sponsor

This episode is sponsored by the following book “Time to Visit Denver” If you’re wondering what it’s like to visit Denver and the state of Colorado during COVID, I’ve put together a guide on what to expect. If you’re not interested in wearing a mask, we’re not interested in having you visit. Sorry not sorry.

Show Notes

  • Denver isn’t a crazy city. In fact, it’s a consistently chill town with splashes of crazy energy. During COVID it has been quieter than I would like and it’s been a bit unnerving.
  • It also has been months since I’ve gone to a bar, attended a concert, gone to an indoor exercise class, or visited a museum.
  • Crush Walls, an annual mural event held in the RINO/Five Points neighborhood ended up being just what the doctor ordered during this time. In fact, Crush Walls ended up being the perfect event during a pandemic.
  • This year I spent almost 4 hours roaming around the streets of RINO discovering new murals. I found the murals this year to be an exciting celebration of futuristic energy, women as the main muse, vibrant color and political statements.
  • Crush Walls was a perfect event for 2020 because it was held outdoors. The only difference from last year was that 99% of the attendees wore masks and tried to be socially distant as they rode, walked, explored the allies and walls of RINO.
  • I love that this event is free and my only complaint about this year’s Crush Walls is that there was a lot of trash in the RINO area. It just felt like no one had cleaned that area during lockdown.
  • One of my favorite murals was in a newly discovered park, Rino Art Park, located one block from Brighton Blvd. I must admit I was shocked to find a new park. But the mural is incredible.
  • I love how murals as art has caught on in Denver and the state of Colorado and enjoy how these murals have democratized access to art throughout the city.
  • I’ll admit that I’ve already penciled in Crush Walls onto my calendar for 2021. Have you gone? Which mural was your favorite?
What Isn't Working During COVID

What Isn’t Working in Colorado During COVID

Last week I shared 9 changes in Colorado during COVID that I sincerely hope we keep after COVID is finally gone. I did forget to add one huge change that I’m loving which is that traffic has gotten better. It’s not as crazy now that so many people are working from home. In this episode I thought it was important to balance out the previous episode and share what isn’t working and what has to change moving forward. Winter is coming and I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to get concerned about several festering issues that will become even worse if we don’t dealt with them now. In this episode I will share what is not working during COVID. Feel free to share what you’ve noticed too. By the way, I’m recording this episode from one of my favorite coffee shops because of course my internet isn’t working right now.

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Thinking About Starting a Website?

It’s pretty simple to do and cheap! Start with Siteground and WordPress.org. With this winning combination you’ll own your own website by the end of the day. And, Siteground has easy to follow tutorials to help you with setting up your site. Also, don’t forget to grab 120 Awesome Blog Ideas from Ruth Soukup’s Elite Blog Academy today.

Listen to the Show

Do you like saving money on groceries, booze, and clothes? Don’t forget to download the Ibotta app, a Colorado local company, I’m a proud affiliate of Ibotta and have saved $100’s of dollars on groceries using it. Sign up via my affiliate link and earn a bonus $10 towards your initial $20 payout when you redeem your first savings.

Show Notes

Unhoused Coloradans

  • The problem is now out of control. It’s my personal view that everyone from politicians, to homeless advocates, and everyday citizens has failed this community. We can no longer accept this situation for so many reasons. I’m so frustrated with what’s going on that I’m looking to do a special season about this issue. Will keep you posted.

Lack of Conversations and Assistance for the Restaurant Industry

  • Last week I talked about the innovations and amazing new approaches that I’ve seen to the restaurant business model. However, the reality is that it has already snowed and we’re hurdling towards winter. Restaurants simply cannot be profitable at 50% capacity. It’s clear that the restaurant industry won’t be helped on the Federal level so I ask the following question: what can we do at the state level to help our local entrepreneurs have a fighting chance to stay in business?

Mask Litter

  • What’s the deal with all of the mask litter? I’m finding blue masks everywhere.

Litter and Tagging Everywhere

  • I will admit that this is an issue that has bothered me for awhile. But, it has gotten worse during COVID-especially in RINO. It almost feels like someone got bored and started tagging buildings for weeks. Also, the is trash everywhere. Literally, everywhere. I had an amazing time during Crush Walls wandering the area but I was honestly grossed out by all of the uncollected trash in areas that weren’t close to the dumpsters. Basically, the smaller trash cans and recycling bins were overflowing. Gross.

Our Local Level of Environmental Commitment

  • Given that this summer tied our hottest summer on record, things have to change. And, Denver being one of the worse cities around for recycling is disappointing. We need to get a lot more serious about the environment and after choking for weeks on smoke and crappy air quality I think it’s an easy issue to get behind. Remember, if we have no snow or rain we don’t have ski seasons or water for crops. And, for those of you who bitch about it snowing in Colorado-if you don’t understand the correlation between snow and no fires, snow and ski resort tourism dollars, snow and water to irrigate and fight fires with-you’re living in the wrong state.

Managing Our Community Members’ Mental Health

  • To be honest, I think the state and local jurisdictions have done a pretty solid job acknowledging that mental health is an ongoing issue in our state. I’ve added this issue to this list to make sure that we continue thinking about it and continue focusing on solutions related to mental health issues in our state. Sadly, suicide continues to be a huge issue in Colorado.

My Colorado App

  • There is so much coming at us that sometimes it’s a bit overwhelming. I wish that the My Colorado App was given more publicity and that the website for the app was streamlined. I would like it to be as normal to use as the All Trails App.

Texans-Out of State Visitors

I’ve loss track of the number of locals who’ve complained about Texans and other out-of-town visitors to our state. In an earlier episode I mentioned that if you’re going to visit you need to follow our rules. It’s not our fault that you don’t have as many great public lands to access as we do. The biggest complaints have been specific to people bringing stank ass attitudes to our state and lack of compliance with our regulations. If you don’t like how we do things, don’t come here and got to Tennessee instead.

Giving in Colorado with Jen and Kane

Giving Back to Colorado One Facebook Post at a Time

When COVID hit, we were shown the best and worst of human nature. We discovered people’s fears, denials, and belief systems. We also watched people crumble under the uncertainty and some rise up to the challenge of the moment that we’re currently living in. The following couple show what it looks like to live with purpose and to show up when other people won’t. With people like the following couple doing good in Denver, I know that we’re in good hands.

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Thinking About Starting a Website About Your Favorite Places?

It’s pretty simple to do and cheap! Start with Siteground and WordPress.org. With this winning combination you’ll own your own website by the end of the day. And, Siteground has easy to follow tutorials to help you with setting up your site. Also, don’t forget to grab 120 Awesome Blog Ideas from Ruth Soukup’s Elite Blog Academy today

Listen to the Show

Show Notes

  • I reflect on how amazing the following group is and the difference it’s making in people’s lives.
  • Things can’t get worse? Can they? Why, yes, they could.
  • Jen and Kane Lezecki
  • Jen is a Colorado Native from Lakewood. Kane is a native from Broomfield despite being born in NYC. A husband and wife duo.
  • I ask them what they like about Colorado.
  • We share our thoughts about Colorado’s growth.
  • Keeping what’s special about Colorado special
  • The traffic sucks.
  • Jen wanted to save the world. She intuited that COVID was coming.
  • She shares the genesis of the group. The lesson-trust your gut!
  • What the group has taught them about people’s needs.
  • I express my amazement at how helpful the group is. We talk about what people are now needing
    • Needing mental health resources
    • How do I get this and where?
    • People are still looking for toilet paper
  • This group is so humbling and we’re humbled by the community members
  • I ask about how they’re managing their well-being
  • How can the listeners help our fellow Coloradans?
    • I ask about the safety protocols they’re using to protect community members.
  • What’s the goal for the community?
  • I end the conversation asking what they think Colorado will be like after this crazy moment in time.
7 Tips to Visiting Denver This Summer

7 Tips for Visiting Denver This Summer During the Rona

I was scrolling through Twitter and popping into some travel focused Facebook groups when I started to notice something alarming-people from other states were planning road trips to Colorado. My first instinct was to freak out. I didn’t stay inside my house from March 11 until May so that you could bring your Rona germs to my state. But, I’m a realist. The reality is that people are going to travel and visit other states. So, I thought about how I could make those trips fun and safe for visitors to Colorado this summer. Because let’s face it, your trip will be different this time. Here are 7 tips for visiting Denver this summer. Take notes

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Thinking About Starting a Website About Your Favorite Places?

It’s pretty simple to do and cheap! Start with Siteground and WordPress.org. With this winning combination you’ll own your own website by the end of the day. And, Siteground has easy to follow tutorials to help you with setting up your site. Also, don’t forget to grab 120 Awesome Blog Ideas from Ruth Soukup’s Elite Blog Academy today

Listen to the Show

Show Sponsor

Need more tips and information to plan your next trip to Denver? Purchase the Time to Visit Denver guide today. Or, if you’re thinking about moving here get the Epic Guide to Moving to Colorado.

Thank you for listening to Square State a podcast all about Colorado. If Texas and California did shots together Colorado would be the result.

Before you begin planning your trip to Denver and the state of Colorado I need to tell you a couple of things.

  • Your trip will be different
  • Businesses have closed
  • Expectations are different
  • But, we’re slowly but surely figuring things out.

Traveling during a pandemic is tricky. We all need a break from reality, but the reality is the pandemic will follow you wherever you go…unless you go to New Zealand and that island isn’t opening up anytime soon.

Tip #1 Be Flexible

Be flexible. Because each state and city is approaching the pandemic in different ways. It’s highly likely that our rules here in Colorado may be different than the rules in your town and state.

Tip #2 Respect our Rules and Mandates

We ask that you respect our rules while you’re here. Be prepared to wear masks in the following spaces:

  • Grocery stores
  • Retail spaces
  • Massage facilities
  • Fitness spaces
  • Coffee shops
  • Restaurants

However, I’ve found that these spaces are doing a great job of communicating their expectations of their clientele in addition to communicating the steps that they’re taking to keep everyone safe.

Tip #3 Do Your Research

You may have heard that businesses are opening back up. But, things are different. Here are some things to anticipate and look out for:

  • Ladies, it pains me to tell you that there seem to be fewer public restrooms available.
  • Hours are different-Many businesses are open for shorter periods of time.
  • Some businesses have completely changed their business model or have pivoted a key area of their services.
  • Timed entries is a thing
  • Some venues are still closed or won’t reopen this summer. Water World is one of those closed venues for this summer.
  • Red Rocks is still closed at the time of this recording which is mid-June 2020
  • Some mountain towns or smaller country towns have their own set of rules and regulations and some may not be excited to have you there. Especially if you don’t follow their rules.

Tip #4 The Questions You NEED to Ask

Here are some helpful questions that you should ask before heading to a venue that interests you. Basically, you’re going to look at their website or call before you stop by. Here’s what you need to check out and ask.

  • What are your hours?
  • Do you have a patio?
  • What is the party size limit?
  • Can we purchase alcohol to go?
  • Do you have a bathroom available for patrons?
  • Do we have to make a reservation?

Tip #5 What to Bring

I call this the Colorado travel kit. You need to have the following items on you.

  • A water bottle-It’s dry here
  • Sunblock-Your skin will thank you
  • Face mask-You’ll need to wear one in most places
  • Hand wipes -Coronavirus!
  • Hand sanitizer-Coronavirus!
  • Chapstick -Your lips will thank you
  • Lotion-Your skin will thank you

Tip #6 Triple-Check Public Transit

Currently, RTD is operating on limited hours and patrons do not have to pay for service. This could change at any moment so you will have to check that as well. You will be requested to wear face masks on the bus and train.

Tip #7 Don’t Wing It

Before the Coronavirus you could “wing it” you know, just visit a place without a firm plan.

I would strongly discourage that as long as we are fighting the spread of the virus. As a resident of Denver and the state of Colorado, I want you to have a great time while you’re here.

But, I think it’s important to be candid about what to expect and what to consider while you’re here.

Things are different. They may be different than your state. That said, I would like to share what things have been like for me for the past couple of weeks as we reopen the state.

  • I’ve taken the light rail
  • I’ve gone to the Farmer’s Market-head’s up visiting the market has changed. Some require a reservation or you have to enter from a specific location and walk in a certain direction. No roaming around.
  • I worked at my co-working space.
  • I’ve hung out at coffee shops-Specifically on the patios
  • You can eat inside restaurants but I’m not ready for that yet.
  • Bars are slowly reopening and I’ve seen people enjoying them.

I’m finding that people have been pretty good natured about everything and that there is a very clear sense that we’re all in this together. I hope you enjoy your next visit to Denver and Colorado.