Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Absolute Vinyl, Bart’s new Shack keep the music playing in Boulder

It seemed like Boulder was bereft of record stores. Second Spin was long gone from the Hill, and just a few months ago Bart’s closed shop on the 11thish block of Pearl.

But the music plays on. Bart has reopened in a new location (and it’s really Bart at the helm again), and a new store had actually opened in January but so quietly you’d be excused if you didn’t know it. Both shops are a bit off the beaten path from a downtown Boulder perspective, but both are definitely worth the hike.

Absolute VinylHead north on Broadway toward the area now known as “Uptown” and you’ll find Absolute Vinyl at 4474 N. Broadway. You can think of it as Broadway and Violet, but you have to go almost all the way to the north end of the long sunken parking lot on the northeast corner of that crossing.. Absolute Vinyl has a good collection of records, from the mundane to the highly collectible, as well as a small offering of used phonographs. At the same address is Little Horse Books, a truly eclectic collection of music-related books and magazine back-issues, local-interest books, classics, and undoubtedly more which this chronicler’s eyes missed upon the first visit.

Also, you’re not crazy. There really is no upstairs.

Phone: (303) 995-1519
Hours: 7 days a week, 11 AM to 6:30 PM

Bart's Music Shack, Porch View

Bart Stinchcomb has returned to the music-store scene, opening Bart’s Music Shack at 236 Pearl Street. Do the math and you’ll realize this is no longer within reach of a brief lunch-break walk from downtown; so what? Take your bike instead. Or hop aboard the 206. When you see the small interior you will be amazed at how many records are on the shelves, in the boxes, on and under the tables, along with a rack of CDs and a shelf of DVDs just to round things out. And Bart tells us there will be more, lots more, in the months to come.

According to the Colorado Daily (linked at the beginning of this article), you should be on the lookout for a grand opening with live music at some unspecified date to come. Watch Bart’s Facebook page (linked in the previous paragraph) for announcements.

Phone: (303) 444-1760
Hours: 11-6 Tuesday through Sunday

Big Freakin’ Deals for Father’s Day

If you’re thinking of taking Dad out tomorrow, here’s several special events and special deals to ensure you have plenty options for this special day.

The Counter
8439 South Park Meadows Center Drive
Lone Tree, CO 80124
(303) 790-9630

The Counter’s “Burger For Dad” deal means that fathers get a free build-your-own burger for Father’s Day. The only catch is, you have to ask for it by name.

Bring in your family and say “I want the BFD!” and the burger is all yours. Offer is limited to one standard burger with included toppings per customer accompanied by a paying guest. Additional and premium toppings such as extra cheese, avocado, fried egg and honey cured bacon are extra.

BFD also stands for “Big Freakin’ Deal,” which is, of course, what Dad is.

McCormick’s & Schmick’s
Denver LoDo location:
1659 Wazee St
Denver, CO 80202

Greenwood Village location:
8100 E. Union Ave
Denver, CO 80237

McCormick’s & Schmick’s invites you to bring Dad in for a 3-course prime rib dinner for $29.95. And keeping with the theme of those typical, classic, 50s-era Dadtastic delights, you can enter him to win a professionally caddied game of golf.

4580 Broadway # D-1
Boulder, CO 80304

5480 hosts its 3rd annual Father’s Day BBQ and Duct Tape Giveaway. $10 to $20 dollars fills a plate with one grilled entry (buffalo, ribs, or kielbasa and stuffed lobster tail) and 3 sides. Plus Dad gets a free roll of duct tape. (Click the link for list of ways to use duct tape. Favorite item with bonus unintentional double entendre: “Taping annoying people to walls, floor, ceiling, or bed.” Bed, hmm? Kids, why don’t you head off to the movies? It sounds like Dad wants some alone time with his special someone… *ahem*)

So far, a list Ozzie and Harriet would approve of. Because all Dads like beef best of all, play golf, and are the exclusive duct-tape using handymen around the house. (See? It’s right in the name: Handyman!) You won’t catch Dad playing video games, eating a cobb salad, or for heaven’s sake knitting. Father’s Day is for safe, predictable gender-role-conforming men! (But we’re all edgy and iconoclastic because we’re telling you not to get Dad yet another neck-tie!)

…OK, I sort of have to wash off my keyboard after typing that, even sarcastically, because, ew. Seriously: Restaurants of the Denver/Boulder area? Yes, there are lots of Dads who love steak, burgers, beers and scotch and wine, cigars, all-day golf outings. There’s often a reason stereotypes get started. It’s good these things are available. But why are they practically all that’s available? Oh, sure, it’s easy to find a vegetarian restaurant if Dad doesn’t do meat, or otherwise cater to Dad’s specific tastes… just as easy as it is on any other day of the year. And that’s the problem. Slap the words “Father’s Day” on it, “Dad’s Big Day,” “Make Dad Feel Special,” and suddenly it’s all about beef, BBQ, tobacco, and golf. Take a look at last year’s Denver Daily round-up of Father’s Day specials; it’s a good sample set of the kind of thing I’m talking about. At least this year’s Open Table list features the odd pasta/Italian dinner/brunch… but most of them are just their regular menu. Like any other day of the year.

All I can say is, Father’s Day must be an annual nightmare, or at least an irritation, for the Dad who doesn’t fit the “Man’s man” stereotype. Everywhere you look, specials and offers and events that seem specifically designed to reinforce the message that your lack of appreciation for a steak and a 9-iron means you’re defective.

Can we fix this?

Examples of the sort of thing it would be nice to see more of:

Boulder Organics‘s Father’s Day Collection:

Featuring a beautifully illustrated, reusable, keepsake gift box (including Father’s Day wrap) that is filled with delicious spicy roasted almonds, apple-pie jam, French Roast coffee, decadent dark chocolate bar, tasty milk chocolate Sun Cups, chipotle lime rub for grilling, some great trail treats like a granola bar, an oat bar, nut-butter squeeze packs, and bees-wax lip balm. Active dads are sure to enjoy this all organic, eco-friendly sampler.

Gigi’s Cupcakes: Dads get a 15% discount on all purchases between 10 AM and 4 PM on Father’s Day, “while enjoying live musical entertainment. Bring the kids and they can frost their own cupcake and, of course, eat their creation for just $3.” Gigi’s is at 550 Grant St. in Denver, phone number 303-777-0698.

See? Special offers and offerings for Father’s Day that think outside the 50s-era sitcom box! It’s not that hard. More like that, please!

FLEX bus makes Larimer County accessible to Denver/Boulder/Longmont commuters

As of this month, you can get from Longmont’s 8th & Main RTD station all the way to the downtown Fort Collins transit center on a single bus, passing through Berthoud and Loveland along the way. The bus that will take you there is the FLEX,the newest, most flexible route in northern Colorado.”

Effectively linking the entire RTD system to Larimer county, the FLEX is sure to make commuting less of a headache. On festival days, parking will officially become someone else’s problem. And, more importantly, those without their own motorized vehicles in Denver need no longer regard the Berthoud, Loveland and Fort Collins area as another country.

Celebrate another victory for accessibility and take a ride on the FLEX this summer. Tomorrow would be a great day to do that, actually–the Loveland Reporter-Herald tells us that…

A special kickoff celebration will take place on June 16 at the Orchards Shopping Center transit station [in Loveland], with dignitaries from Fort Collins, Loveland, Berthoud, Longmont and Boulder County attending.

More details: A ride on the FLEX costs $1.25. This covers transfers onto the COLT and Transfort systems, but passengers transferring onto RTD buses will need to pay that fare separately. The complete map and schedule are available as PDFs in English and Spanish. Big thanks to the Big Green Boulder blog for breaking this story back on the 7th when the FLEX started service.

Time for Health Insurance Reform

I am so frustrated I could spit!

At my company, we are going through our annual health insurance renewal process.  Our health insurance company (who shall remain unnamed to protect the guilty) raised our costs by 28%.  It should be noted that their original proposal was for a 33% increase and they “kindly” reduced it to 28%.

In my opinion, that is outrageous.  No other costs are increasing at that rate.  It is an extreme hardship on our staff and a boat anchor for our business.  We will never be able to get the economy going again if businesses across the US are forced to increase their health insurance costs by 28% a year.

My company essentially split the cost with our staff by absorbing a 14% increase in the premiums and passing on the additional cost to the heaviest users in the form of higher deductibles.  The only winner here is the insurance company.

Here is an article from the Atlanta Journal Constitution on the same topic.

The system is broken and it needs to be fixed.  I don’t know if the health insurance legislation that is stalled in Congress is the answer, but I do know that they need to do something – and do it soon.  The Republican approach of denying and delaying is absolutely unconscionable.

CSA Membership: Creativity Required

As I may have mentioned before, this is Chez LeBoeuf-Little’s second year in CSA membership with Abbondanza Organic Seeds & Produce. Last year we had far, far too many veggies even for our renewed resolution to eat out less and cook together more, so this year I yielded to John’s wisdom in signing up for only a partial share. Even so, possibly because I’ve been going out of town at frequent intervals and John’s been working late, we have a situation.

Thus, on a snowy day in Boulder, I present OMG Nothing Will Fit In The Fridge Soup.

  1. From that still unopened package of bacon you bought because it looked like a good idea at the time, remove four fat slices. Cut them into 1″ squares. Start them frying.
  2. If you like, add a quarter-cup chopped up roasted chilis. The ones that looked so gorgeous at the farmer’s market last week. You only meant to buy three ears of peaches ‘n cream sweet corn, but you can’t resist a bag of freshly roasted chilis.
  3. When the bacon is about half-done, delve into this week’s CSA share. Slice up and add to the bacon pan the stems of that beautiful bunch of rainbow chard, one fat green pepper, and one yellow onion. Let these cook until the aroma makes you salivate. Let cook a few minutes longer.
  4. Roughly chop the chard leaves and stick them in a soup pot with just enough water to cover. Dump in a can of navy beans. (This is why you stocked up on canned beans.) Dump in a quarter-cup or so of frozen turkey drippings. (This is why you save and freeze the turkey drippings.) Dump in a nice big anonymous spoonful (teaspoon? tablespoon? Who knows? Who cares?) of your favorite bouillon.
  5. Take the pan of bacon-onion-pepper-chili off the stove and put the soup pan on. Turn fire up to “please come to a gentle boil, if you please.” Dump contents of pan into soup pot. Stir.
  6. When the pot’s boiling, reduce to “simmer but don’t take forever about it” and wait as long as you can stand it.

Serve with OMG Nothing Will Fit In The Fridge Salad, which is all the mizuna and arugula still fresh enough to eat in a salad plus a couple radishes and carrots and cucumbers and raw zucchini and julienned roasted beets and, you know, whatever, drizzled with Ravenous Chocolate Vinaigrette.

Time to eat!

Time to eat!

Typically some greens haven’t been used up. Make stir fry tomorrow with the choi, using those Hazel Dell oyster mushrooms you bought for just this purpose. Also one of those great long yellowish-green peppers that you’re never sure what to do with.

Take the rest of the chard, collard, arugula, mizuna, and whatever choi didn’t fit in the stir fry, and boil them down for Green Gumbo. (This has the advantage of using up more peppers and onions, though you may have to go out and buy the celery and parsley.)

“Next time on the CSA Overflow Creativity Show: OMG Nothing Will Fit In The Freezer! Stay tuned.”

(Reposted from my personal blog, because if the Boulder Farmer’s Market and Abbondanza Organic Seeds & Produce aren’t relevant to Denver Metblogs then I dunno what is.)

Recycling at Frontier

I am in Alaska on vacation right now. Amazing! To quote one of my friends, “It’s like Colorado on steroids”. But it sure is a lot wetter….

But that is not the reason for this post….

On my Frontier Airlines flight from Denver to Anchorage last Monday I learned that Frontier recycles all of the aluminum pop and beer cans from their flights. I had noticed that the flight attendant was pulling the tabs off the cans and separating them from the rest of the trash. When I asked why, she told me about Frontier’s recycling program. In addition, she told me that her grandson’s Cub Scout troop was collecting the tabs on the cans for the Ronald McDonald House. Apparently, Ronald McDonald is recycling those.

I continue to be impressed with Frontier Airlines. I hope Frontier is able to survive in this difficult economic environment. It has been a godsend for Denver to have a decent alternative to United Airlines.

It’s Raining in Colorado

I am so tired of rain. With all the snow and rain we have been getting in the last two months, it is starting to feel like Seattle, not Denver.

The rain is great for the garden, it’s nice to see so much green grass, and it probably means a lot fewer forest fires this summer, but … this is Colorado. We are supposed to get 300+ days of sunshine each year.

Fortunately, it looks like the rain is on hold – at least until this afternoon. We are going camping this weekend and I am hoping our tent stays dry and we can play in Colorado’s great outdoors!

Get your art on downtown!

10th Annual Denver Art Center

2009 Downtown Denver Arts Festival Dates:

Friday 4-8PM
Saturday 11-8PM
Sunday 11-5PM
Monday 11-4PM

Monday 11-4PM

Should be a blast! Checkout all the local artists, support local talent!

Women’s Expo This Weekend!

Hey ladies!!

This weekend is the Women’s expo at  the convention center!

What the heck is a women’s expo you ask? I the whole right side of the cenvention center (well it was last time) filled with everything a woman might want.

Tons of samples – last year there were at least 10 different types of chocolate and cookies – omg!

The generic female stuff – purses, shoes, clothes

And speakers!!

2 stages worth

Stage one will feature a line-up of speakers focusing on fitness, fashion and finance while the second stage will spotlight cooking, creative design and crafting.

famous folks like…

  • Style Matters fashion columnists Judie Schwartz and Evelinda Urman will talk about how to wear high style at low prices and trends on what’s hot and what’s not.

  • Shane Tallant, host of HGTV’s Designed to Sell, will lead an interactive and educational seminar on how to make a home stand out from the rest.

And local talent:

  • Barbara Gehring and Linda Klein will present GIRLS ONLY: The Secret Comedy of Women, an original comedy celebrating the honor, truth, humor and silliness of being female.

Financial advice and fitness tips:

  • Financial adviser Wendy Spencer will help women learn how to track where their money goes, find ways to reduce expenses, develop easy savings routines and create a spending plan.

  • Fitness and health expert Dan Polimino will discuss what roles proteins, carbohydrates and fats play in weight gain and weight loss as well as the four little things you can do each day to change your whole outlook on life.

There is also a special Boutique Marketplace, a new offering this year that will showcase products and services created specifically by Colorado-based artisans and businesswomen.

Buy local!

And so much more!

The Colorado Women’s Expo hours are Saturday, April 25, 2009, from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Sunday, April 26, 2009, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The Colorado Convention Center is located at 700 14th Street, Denver, Colorado, 80202. For more information about the show, please visit

If you are interested in attending there is also an online coupon for $2 off you can use here: http://www.coloradowom…

Alderfer/Three Sisters Open Space

Hiked the Three Sisters Open Space in Evergreen today.  It was a beautiful day for a hike!

Apparently, we weren’t the only ones who thought it was a good day for a hike.  This was the most crowded I have seen any Open Space park in our area since last summer.  Both parking lots were full and cars were parked along the roads outside the park.

We saw tons of hikers, bikers and dogs on the trail today.

Even so, it was beautiful.  The sky was blue, the sun was out and it was warm.  I even had to take off my windbreaker because I was sweating so much.  Dry – probably too dry – and no mud or snow.

This is a great place to hike.  It is right behind Evergreen High School.  It is easy to access.  Also, it has trails for all levels because there are flat open areas as well as steeper trails that go through the woods.  And, if you are a climber, there are lots and lots of big rocks to climb.

I highly recommend this one!

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