Denver

I feel like this post is pretty unnecessary. It’s basically going to be me telling you how awesome Denver is, not that you needed another millennial doing so. But I love Denver and want to talk about it, so here we are.

The last time I was in Denver was 2009, and when I told every Uber driver this, they all proceeded to tell me how much the city has grown since then. I agree. I know the population massively spiked in the last 5-10 years, and it’s easy to see why. This city has everything you could ever want: excellent outdoor activities, a fantastic art scene, lots of fun festivals, and so much food we barely scratched the surface.

I’m going to pick this blog up after my friends arrived because the week of the ACHA Annual Meeting I was pretty secluded to the Sheraton and only saw 16th Street – which is very fun, but not as interesting as the rest of my time there. We spent our first real night together at Infinite Monkey Theorem, a winery with a distinctly urban twist. There will be no bottles here. You either get wine on tap or wine in a can. Usually I’d stick my nose up at the notion of canned wine, but in this case, it’s literally what they are known for, and it was delicious.

The next day we spent time at the annual Chalk Art Festival on Larimer Square. I’m always awed by artists and chalk art, in particular, fascinates me since it’s a very unique medium to choose. We went fairly early in the morning, and it was already completely packed. Larimer Square itself is also fun to explore since the pedestrian walkway is lined with unique shops and cafes.

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Now, no Denver trip is complete without some sort of hiking, and while we didn’t want to drive all the way into the Rockies, we did want to see some kind of unique rocks while we were there. We chose the Flat Irons outside Boulder and made a fun day of it.

Last time I was in Denver I remember the altitude really taking a toll on me and I was worried this would be a repeat experience. Thankfully, I’m in better shape now than I was then, and I’m also better at listening to my body when it’s screaming “TAKE A BREAK KRISTEN, YOU DON’T NEED TO BE A HERO,” so it was an enjoyable experience. We spent the rest of the afternoon in Boulder ducking in and out of shops to avoid the rainstorms that blew in off the mountains daily.

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One thing that’s changed quite a bit since 2009 and my last visit to Denver is my taste in activities. In 2009 I don’t think anyone could have paid me enough to voluntarily go to the Denver Botanic Gardens (unless perhaps I had a camera with a macro lens), but now in 2019, it was top of my list. Coincidently, I did have a new camera to play with on this trip, so I tried my best not to stop and take a million photos of every single flower.

Of course, I failed.

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On our last morning, before all of us succumbed to horrendous airline travel back to our homes, we decided to get up and hike around Red Rocks. We didn’t have the chance to go to the Amphitheater for a concert, unfortunately, but if you’re in Denver and want an easy but beautiful hike, Red Rocks is your go-to. We only had time for a 1.5-mile loop since we needed to get packed up and out the door by 11:00 am, but it was the perfect way to end the week.

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I’ve made this plea several times to the DOD, but this one is of vital importance: if you guys could, like, post us in Denver? That would be cool. Thanks.

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