Archives For mountains

 

sled dogI’ve been a fan of dog sled racing since I was just a little girl. Growing up in the far northern reaches of Washington State – let’s face it, it was practically Canada – there were quite a few Alaska connections around my community. This meant that throughout my childhood I had roundabout connections to the Iditerod, and therefore I never missed the race on television.

Since moving to Colorado in 2000, it’s been on my bucket list to make it to one of the many sled dog festivals that are held in the Rocky Mountains. This February I finally get my chance, not only to fulfill my childhood dream of riding in a dog sled with Dog Sled Rides of Winter Park, but also to witnesses sanctioned sled dog races.

I’ll be attending the Grand Park Dog Days of Winter over Presidents Day weekend in Grand Park, Colorado, just outside of Winter Park.

This is a two-day event, sanctioned by the International Sled Dog Racing Association. Races will offer slots for sled teams of four, six and eight dogs, a three-dog junior division and one and two-dog skijoring, where the mushers, wearing cross-country skis, are pulled by their dogs.

A skijoring clinic will be held on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 1:30 p.m. and people are encouraged to bring their dogs and give it a try. Harnesses and gear will be provided, but you need skis and a willing dog. In addition to the races there will be vendors and other entertainment at the race site.

In addition to the spectacle of the dog sled races, the area will be bustling with activity over Presidents Day Weekend. On Saturday night, visitors can experience Winter Park Comedy Night at Winter Park Resort. Learn more about winterparkcomedynight.com.

Grand Park Dog Days of Winter

Grand Park, Colorado

(between Winter Park & Fraser)

Feb. 16-17, 2013

www.playwinterpark.com/dogdaysofwinter

 

Official event poster (click to enlarge):

Grand Park Dog Days of Winter 2013 poster

beautiful cake made in Colorado HeidiTown

A pretty cake goes a long way in making your Valentine happy! Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

Want to experience an authentic Colorado Valentine’s Day? Here are my tips for infusing a little Rocky Mountain high into your relationship this February.

STAY

Colorado offers everything from well-appointed historic hotels like the Brown Palace and Hotel Colorado to the shiny and still-fairly-new Ritz-Carlton in downtown Denver to Movie Manor, a motel in Monte Vista offering a drive-in movie with your stay.

When it comes to lodging options, this state has it all, but it’s Colorado’s bed and breakfasts that offer the perfect romantic ambiance for a Valentine’s Day escape. Many bed and breakfasts are located in the heart of Colorado’s unique towns, making everything within easy walking distance including restaurants, bars and shopping.

If you have reservations about staying at a bed and breakfast, I encourage you to read my article, “Dispelling the myths about staying at a bed & breakfast.”

Pick a bed and breakfast with a romance package, or make your own romance package. Pack a bottle of bubbly, some of your partner’s favorite chocolates or other fancy foods and stay in for the evening. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge!

We recently stumbled across the Carr Manor in Cripple Creek, and toured this 14-room bed and breakfast in a converted high school. There are two spa suites that will blow your mind. One has a vaulted Jacuzzi tub that should come with a couple servants waving palm frawns.

For a romantic little get away in the charming town of Berthoud, Colorado, check out the Berthoud Inn. The owner is an accomplished chef who just might cook up something special for your dinner if prearranged.

wine & chocolate HeidiTown

A romance package is a nice touch when booking a romantic escape at hotel or bed & breakfast. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer.

Eat

When it comes to the culinary scene, Colorado has chefs who are pushing the boundaries and testing the palates of residents from the Front Range to Aspen. While not always known as a “foodie town,” today, inspired cuisine can be found throughout Denver at places like Euclid Hall and Fruition Restaurant.

But let’s face it, Colorado’s known for meat, red meat like steak, lamb and wild game.

If you want to impress your date this Valentine’s Day with an authentic Colorado meal, try the Frontier Platter at The Fort in Morrison. This sample plate includes a buffalo sirloin medallion, wild boar chops and grilled teriyaki quail. Start your meal with some Rocky Mountain oysters as a daring aphrodisiac.

Looking for Rocky Mountain oysters at a less fancy establishment and price? Try Bruce’s in Severance, Colorado. A basket of oysters, fries and dip at Bruce’s will only set you back $8.99.

snowshoing HeidiTown

Snowshoeing if fun! Photo by Ryan Schlaefer.

DO

Here at HeidiTown, I’m all about doing stuff, and Valentine’s Day is your opportunity to get out and do something romantic with that special person in your life.

If you read HeidiTown then you’re already an expert when it comes to doing fun Colorado stuff, but if not, here are a few suggestions for this Valentine’s Day.

Dinner theater – This option kills two birds with one stone; dinner and the evening’s entertainment.  And if you want to keep the Colorado theme going, The Unsinkable Molly Brown is now onstage at the Candlelight Dinner Playhouse in Johnstown.

A free gondola ride in Breckenridge – The 143-cabin Breckenridge Gondola runs year-round for skiers and non-skiers. This ride could be part of a romantic getaway in the beautiful town of Breckenridge, Colorado. Current hours of gondola operation are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

A moonlight snowshoe outing – Check out Colorado’s Best Snowshoeing Trails and do a little investigating to find out what resorts/ranches have this unique experience available.

Oktoberfest GingerbreadIt’s time for another segment of HeidiTown on the radio. If your curious about when these air, you can hear me at noonish on Wednesdays and during your drive home on Fridays around 5:30 p.m. on KRFC 88.9 FM.

Some of the info in this week’s segment will seem like old news to my avid readers, because I’ve already written about Berthoud Oktoberfest on previous occasions, but it will be new information for my radio audience.

This radio show also has some advice on traveling in Colorado during the fall. Both my birthday and my husband’s birthday are in the fall, and we tend to do weekend getaways to celebrate, so we’ve learned a lot about traveling the state during this time of year.

Listen to this week’s segment HERE.

the Mayor in a blue car at Colorado Nationals

The Mayor of HeidiTown at the 2011 Colorado Nationals. Photo by Ryan Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

It’s another great Colorado weekend with events that will suit every taste and every age group.

The following is the transcript from my weekly radio show on KRFC 88.9 FM. If you’d rather listen to the show, click here.

***

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about festivals, events and destinations around Colorado.

This is the line up for June 8 through the 10th, 2012, and now that the festival season is in full swing I urge you to hook up with me on Facebook and Twitter, because it’s an impossible task to share everything I’d like to share here on the radio show.

First up, it’s the Taste of Fort Collins this weekend. Food events take place around the state and it seems most towns now have one and these festivals are a great way to introduce your taste buds to new restaurants in your community.

Taste of Fort Collins LogoFort Collins has a thriving food scene and new restaurants are cropping up every month. 41 restaurants are participating in this year’s Taste of Fort Collins. Marketed as a family-friendly event, festival goers can even vote on their favorite restaurant at the Taste. Last year’s People’s Choice winner was Jax Fish House. For more on this two-day tasty affair go to TasteofFortCollins.com.

I’m not a car nut and I can’t tell you the first thing about an engine, however, I LOVE vintage cars, so I really enjoy attending the Colorado Nationals held at The Ranch in Loveland every year.

The event features over 1500 rods, custom, classic and muscle cars through 1972. There are vendor and manufacturers exhibits, a swap meet, a model and pedal car show, an autocross competition that’s very exciting and a lot more.

Even if you aren’t a gearhead, I know you’ll have fun at the 15th Annual Colorado Nationals running this Friday through Sunday. Get all the details at Good-Guys.com, look under Events.

The famous Greeley Blues Jam is upon us. It starts in downtown Greeley this Friday and then the ticketed event is Saturday at Island Grove. Eleven hours of nonstop blues awaits the avid fans of this annual music festival. Learn more at GreeleyBluesJam.com.

Two events are happening in the tiny but fabulous town of Lyons, Colorado this weekend. It’s the Lyons Outdoor Games and the Oskar Blues Burning Can Festival is back. The games were created 11 years ago to celebrate mountains sports such as kayaking, mountain biking, fly fishing, chainsaw carving and more. There are numerous clinics and exhibitions by some of the world’s most elite athletes.

The Burning Can is a festival of CANNED beer featuring over 25 breweries. This is the perfect weekend to be in Lyons, check it all out online at LyonsOutdoorGames.com.

It’s Wool Festival in Estes June 9 and 10. This is one of the largest all-natural fiber markets in North America featuring demos, contests, a children’s tents, exhibits and the sale of fiber animals like alpacas. In its 22nd year, this event draws more than 10,000 to the beautiful town of Estes Park, Colorado. One of the more interesting features of this event is that you can learn how to pack a llama for hiking of hunting. I’ve always thought it would be fun to hike the backcountry with a llama. Learn more at EstesParkCVB.com.

Colorado Renaissance Festival in Larkspur Colorado

The joust at the Colorado Renaissance Festival is a highly anticipated event involving a lot of cheering and jeering from the crowd. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer

Two popular summer festivals get underway this weekend including my personal favorite the Colorado Renaissance Festival in Larkspur running through the end of July, and the Colorado Shakespeare Festival in Boulder running through mid-August.

It’s Parker Days this weekend, a family event that has been taking place in Parker, Colorado for thirty years. There’s a parade, carnival, and tons of activities for all ages. More at ParkerDaysFestival.com.

There is a fun fest taking place in southwest Colorado this weekend, a destination that should be on your radar this summer. June 7 through 10th is the 34th Annual Pioneer Days in Crawford, Colorado. Outhouse races are the highlight of this celebration of the wild west that also features lots of live entertainment, vendors, a Cowboy Cook-off, parade and lots more family fun. Learn more at CrawfordCounty.org.

As a reminder, if you are looking for ways to keep the kiddos busy this summer, be sure to check out your local museum. Many are offering workshops, exhibits and other programs aimed at entertaining and educating children.

That’s all the time I have for this week’s radio show. Be sure to join me on Facebook at HeidiTown.comonFB and follow me on Twitter for more festival and event information. The town is also on Google Plus.

Thank you for listening! Until next week I hope to see you online or at a festival near you!

Memorial Day weekend is upon us, and that means from this point on I will be running around the state like a crazy woman with dusty festival feet and pulling a tired, but accommodating husband along behind me.

The following are my KRFC 88.9 FM radio show transcripts for Memorial Day weekend. You can either read them, or if you prefer, listen to the audio HERE.

***

Realities-Ride-Motorcycles-downtown

Realities for Children Motorcycle Ride and Rally in downtown Fort Collins, Colorado. (Courtesy Photo)

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about festivals, events and destinations around Colorado.

It’s Memorial Day weekend, a time to remember those who have died in service of this great nation. It’s also marks the kickoff of the summer festival season, although summer doesn’t officially start until June 20.

It’s a very busy weekend, so let’s get started.

Here in Fort Collins… the Realities for Children Motorcycle Ride and Rally has become a tradition in Northern Colorado. It is one of the state’s largest charity motorcycle poker runs and features lots of stuff to get your motor runnin’ including live music, fireworks, a stunt show, vintage and custom bikes and more. The Rally starts on Saturday in downtown Fort Collins and runs from 11 to 11. Downtown’s largest fireworks display starts at 9 p.m. The ride continues on Sunday at Thunder Mountain Harley Davidson in Loveland. For details and to register for the ride go to RealitiesRide.com.

Also, mark your calendar because Bohemian Nights Presents the Thursday Night Live Concert Series on Thursday May 31. Enjoy local music every Thursday in Old Town through August 2nd. For band info, go to DowntownFortCollins.com.

In Estes Park this weekend, enjoy the Art Market. Ninety Artisans will display their talents in Bond Park. Details at ArtCenterofEstes.com.

And speaking of ART, the Downtown Denver Arts Festival is also this weekend at the Denver Pavilions. 150,000 art-lovers are expected to attend this event that includes a special exhibit of DiVinci’s Machines. Go to DowntownDenverArtsFestival.com for a map of this huge artsy affair and the schedule.

Also in Denver, the Memorial Day Parade & Tribute Ceremonies are scheduled for Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in Civic Center Park. Let’s never forget those who have paid the ultimate price for the freedoms that we enjoy and take for granted each and every day. Visit DenverGov.org/Veterans for more.

This weekend is also the Boulder Creek Festival, three days of entertainment, shopping and people watching. This event is a great way to break in your festival sandals and practice your dance moves. Go to BCEProductions.com for the details on Boulder’s unofficial kick off to summer.

Also in Boulder, Cinderella is now underway at Boulders Dinner Theater. Watch for a review coming soon to HeidiTown.com.

There are several river-oriented fests this weekend in two of my favorite Colorado mountain towns.

PaddleFest in Buena Vista boy in Kayak

Paddle Fest in Buena Vista, Colorado. (Courtesy Photo)

First it’s Paddle Fest in Buena Vista. If you haven’t been to this part of Colorado, you’ve really been missing out on one of the most spectacular destinations in the state. Located on the Arkansa River, Buena Vista and Salida are two town highly regarded by kayakers and PaddleFest is an interactive event that will get you ready for a safe, fun season on the water. This event has grown over the years, check it out at CKSPaddleFest.com.

And speaking of the water, it’s the 32nd Annual Yampa River Festival in Steamboat Springs. Take it from me, this town knows how to throw a party, and this event is no exception. The festival celebrates everything on the river with races, slaloms, tube rodeo, Crazy River Dog Competition and lots more. Go to FriendsoftheYampa.com for more information.

Staying at altitude, it’s the Beaver Creek’s 9th Annual Blues, Brews & Barbecue. This is a serious weekend of eating, drinking, golfing and more. For ticket information go to BeaverCreek.com.

Eagle Dancer

2th Annual Indian Arts & Culture Festival in Mesa Verde. (Courtesy Photo)

There is a lot more happening around Colorado this Memorial Day weekend including Territory Days in Old Colorado City, an historic family-festival the kids will love, more at ShopOldColoradoCity.com. And the 4th Annual MeadowGrass Music Festival, also in the Springs. Old time music is alive and well at this event, details at MeadowGrass.org. And in Mesa Verde it’s the 12th Annual Indian Arts & Culture Festival, a week long celebration of Native American Culture in one of the most fascinating Colorado destinations. Go to to MesaVerdeCountry.com to plan your trip.

I’m out of time, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t hook up with me out there on social media and learn even more… join the town’s block party at Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB. Follow me on Twitter @HeidiTown or visit the town on Google Plus.

Thanks so much for listening! Have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend, and until next time, I will see you online or at a festival near you.

***

A special thank you to the following for photography use: Mesa Verde Country, Colorado Kayak Supply, Realities for Children.

The weekends seem to be flying by at a frightfully fast rate!  I can’t believe that it is already mid-April.  The following is the transcript from my weekly radio show on KRFC 88.9 FM. You can either read the transcript below or listen to the audio of the show HERE.

***

MyHandleBar 2012

The HeidiTown.com MyHandleBar gang after our Fort Collins ride. Photo by Alex, our bike "driver" extraordinaire.

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and travel around Colorado.

As we head into the busy summer festival season I want to hand out some advice. If you are planning an event, don’t forget to calendar it online in newspapers up and down the Front Range.

I am surprised by how many organizations will make fliers, put the event in their newsletter and even create a Facebook event invite, but fail to calendar their festival in a local newspaper. This is a small and easy step for you to take and I promise, it will help with your event. I rely heavily on calendars and so does the festival going public. I LOVE social media, but if that should be an additional way to get your message out – don’t forget about the tried and true methods.

Okay, now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, on to regular scheduled programming!

If you were in Old Town Fort Collins a couple weekends ago, you might have got a glimpse of my rowdy HeidiTown gang on board the MyHandleBar. This is a unique way to do a brewery crawl. MyHandleBar bike is new to Fort Collins as of last summer and this was my third ride.  If you want to see your adult friends giggle like school children this s pring and summer, get them on the MyHandleBar. There’s also a bike running in Boulder. Find out more at MyHandleBar.com.

Here are a few events that I’ve previously mentioned that are now upon us. This is the weekend of April 13th through the 15th, 2012.

The Arvada Kite Festival is this Saturday. I think this looks like the perfect event for a family outing. Visit ArvadaFestivals.com for all the details.

Shotski Steamboat Cardboard Classic

Our human-sized SHOTSKI at the 2008 Cardboard Classic in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Photo by Ryan Schlaefer.

One of my favorite mountain mud season events is also this weekend. The 32nd Annual Cardboard Classic is part of Springalicious in Steamboat Springs. If you have been considering heading up to the Boat, this is the weekend to do it. The 5th Annual Splashdown Pond Skimming Competition is on Sunday, so make a road trip out of it! There are also live bands playing all weekend. More info at Steamboat.com.

Back here in Fort Collins I have posted a review of “The Sound of Music” now on stage at Midtown Art Center. I won’t give anything away except to say that the kids steal the show and I had one of my best meals I’ve had at this venue! Read the entire review on HeidiTown.com.

And now for something completely adorable! The Plumb Farm Learning Center in Greeley celebrates spring with its annual Baby Animal Days happening now through April 21. During Baby Animal Days families are invited to the farm to see llamas, alpacas, goats, lambs, cows, horses, pigs, rabbits, chicks and ducks. Baby animals will be everywhere so if you child is anything like me when I was a kid they will be overwhelmed with delight. The event is open daily through April 21st. Visit GreeleyGov.com/museums/BabyAnimalDays.

Lastly, in our planning ahead section…

Elton John Pinball Machine Manitou Springs Colorado

An interesting Elton John pinball machine at the Penny Arcade in Manitou Springs, Colorado. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

This next event is for all you pinball wizards and groupies. At the end of the month, it’s the Rocky Mountain Pinball Showdown. That’s Friday, April 27th through Sunday April 29th.

I blogged about this event last year on HeidiTown. There are over 100 pinball machines on display – no quarters need to play. There are also exhibitors from around the country including pinball sellers, buyers, specialists and a lot more. If you are a fan of pinball, you don’t want to miss the Rocky Mountain Pinball Showdown at the Embassy Suites at the Denver Tech Center. Get more information at PinBallShowdown.com.

And by the way, every week I post a transcript of this show on HeidiTown, so if you need missed something, or need a web address, you can look it up there.

That’s all the time I have for this week. Remember, you can follow me on Twitter @HeidiTown, circle the town on Google Plus, or join the town’s block party on Facebook at Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB.

Thanks for listening and until next time, I will see you online!

The following is the transcript from my weekly segment on KRFC 88.9 FM.  If you’d prefer to listen to the audio —>  LISTEN HERE.

***

New Belgium Scavenger Hunt poster

The hunt is on at Ski Loveland this weekend!

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and travel across Colorado.

Here’s the line up for March 30th through April 1st, 2012.

First, I want to point out an error in last week’s segment.  I said the Flobots were playing the Breckenridge concert series at Peak 8, but that was last year’s schedule!  The line up this year includes Julian Marley, Soul Rebels, Leftover Salmon, Donavon Frankenreiter, Toots & Maytals & Rusted Root.  Sounds like a good time in Breckenridge this spring! Of course, it’s always a good time in Breck.  Keep tabs on the town and resort at Breckenridge.com.

There are lots of film festivals across Colorado, and I rarely mention them because there are so many and most are fairly typical, however, sometimes one catches my eye. On Friday, March 30th, the Colorado Mountain Club will host the Winter Wildlands Alliance’s Backcountry Film Festival at the Wildlife Experience in Parker.

The festival promotes the work of grassroots filmmakers who tell compelling and entertaining stories of back country, non-motorized recreation and environmental preservation. This is the seventh annual world tour of the festival and the 90-minute program features some of the most extreme winter athletes in the world. More on the film festival at BackCountryFilmFestival.org, and more on the venue at WildLifeExperience.org.

The Sound of Music

This weekend, I will be attending “The Sound of Music” at Midtown Arts Center in Fort Collins. The show started last weekend, and I’m excited to see Midtown’s production of one of my favorite stories. Watch for a review of the play on HeidiTown.com next week.

Other dinner theater productions now playing include “Oklahoma” at Candlelight Dinner Playhouse in Loveland, running through June 2nd. “The Drowsy Chaperone” at Boulders Dinner Theater, playing through May 13. “One Enchanted Evening” is currently underway at The Heritage Square Music Hall in Golden and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” starts on April 7 at the Union Colony Dinner Theater in Greeley.

White hatHere’s one of those events that you may not here about anywhere else, because I simply find it delightful, although perhaps it won’t appeal to many of the males who might be listening. It’s the Haberdasher’s Delight Hat Workshop at the Molly Brown House Museum in Denver on Saturday, March 31st.

Participants create their very own Titanic-sized millinery masterpiece with the help of historic fashion experts. The museum provides the hat, materials and refreshments, while you supply the creativity. The material will be for spring or summer hats, but on September 15, you can return to the museum to create a winter hat. Learn more at MollyBrown.org.

On the Western Slope there’s a Spring Fest this Saturday in Palisade. This downtown festival has an Easter Bonnet contest, gardening tips, music, vendors, food and dancing. It will be a great way for the area to embrace the start of their growing season. Visit the PalisadeTribune.com for details.

This weekend at the Loveland Ski Area it’s the annual New Belgium Brewing Scavenger Hunt brought to you by the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado. Be sure to put on your thinking cap before you go, because the clues won’t be easy. To give you a few hints, some of the fun includes hunting for Bigfoot and chasing down an angler. Afterwards, celebrate all your hard work with a cold brew. More at SkiLoveland.com.

That’s all the time I have for this week. Until next time, join the town’s block party on Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB. The Facebook page is such a great addition to HeidiTown, because I can tell you about a bunch of events and festivals that never make the blog or the radio show.

Be sure you are following me on Twitter @HeidiTown and join the town on Google Plus. Lastly, you are always welcome to email me directly at TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.

Thanks for listening!

The transcript from my radio segment for KRFC 88.9 FM, Fort Collins public radio, is below.  Find out what’s happening across Colorado on the first weekend of spring 2012.

If you’d rather, you can listen to the audio HERE.

***

Bud Light Jams Aspen/Snowmass

View of Grace Potter & the Nocturnals from the deck of Sneaky's Tavern in Aspen/Snowmass at 2010 Bud Light Jam. Photo by Jeremy Swanson, all rights reserved.

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and travel around Colorado.

Spring has officially sprung. On my walks with the dog I’ve noticed bits of green finding their way up through the brown that covers the Front Range after winter. I’ve also noticed the mountains are still covered in bright, white snow.

Yep, it’s mud season in the mountains, but it’s actually one of my favorite times to get up to one of the resort towns. The crowds have thinned and it’s time for spring festivals like the one I mentioned last week, Springalicious in Steamboat. This event happens the first week in April, but this weekend it Bud Light Spring Jam in Aspen. This party includes concerts and competitions on the slopes. This is the last weekend of a two weekend event. For more info go to StayAspenSnowmass.com.

During the month of April, at the base area at Peak 8 at Breckenridge Resort on Saturday and Sunday afternoons live bands perform. The concert series kicks off April 2nd with the Flobots performing. For the entire band line up go to Breckenridge.com.

PLEASE NOTE FOR MY HEIDITOWN READERS: Unfortunately, the Flobots performed last year. The old schedule was online & I didn’t realize I was looking at the wrong schedule.  For the right schedule of bands in Breck go HERE.  I will make a note of my mistake in next week’s radio show!

Most of the mountain resorts say goodbye to ski season with a big party, so your favorite resort probably has Spring events too.

wine glassBack here in Fort Collins, this Friday night is the 30th Annual Wine Fest, a wine tasting to benefit Disabled Resource Services. The fest is one of the largest wine events in Colorado and features over 500 different wines paired with food from local restaurants. The event also includes prizes, music, entertainment and a silent auction. This year’s event will be held at the Fort Collins Hilton. More at WineFestFC.org.

Also in Northern Colorado, out at The Ranch it’s the 51st Gem and Mineral Show presented by the Fort Collins Rock Hounds. It runs all weekend inside the Thomas M. McKee 4-H Building. This year’s exhibits feature fossils and quartz. There will be demos, door prizes a mineral specimen grab bag and more. Children are welcome to attend. More at FortCollinsRockHounds.org.

If you prefer climbing rocks rather than busting them open, there’s also an event for you this weekend. In Golden, a fun little Colorado town, it’s MountainFest 2012 at the Bradford Washburn American Mountaineering Museum. The event runs from 1 to 6 p.m. on Saturday and is the perfect way to get motivated and learn skills for all your spring and summer mountain adventures. The event features outdoor skill clinics, museum tours, open climbing and climbing competitions on the indoor rock wall, slacklining and an expo. There’s even a band scheduled to rock the place from 4 to 6:30. Learn more at CMC.org.

Anthology Book Co. & The Coffee Tree

Anthology Book Co. & The Coffee Tree in downtown Loveland, Colorado. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

Lastly, I’d like to give a shout out to downtown Loveland. If you haven’t been there in awhile, it’s time to go. They have been working hard to revitalize the downtown area in and around 4th Street. There are several new restaurants and soon there will be a new brewery.  With the Rialto Theater project now complete, it’s a good time to get to Loveland, perhaps catch this weekend’s play Jane Austin’s Persuasion, performed by Lost Marbles Theatrics. Keep tabs on what’s happening at the Rialto at ci.Loveland.co.us.

That’s all the time I have for  this week. Until we meet again, join me and other town citizens at Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB. Or chat with me on Twitter @HeidiTown or join the town on Google Plus. As aways, you are welcome to email me at TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.

Thanks for listening and Happy Spring!

The following is the transcript from my weekly radio segment on KRFC 88.9 FM in Fort Collins, Colorado. If you’d like, listen to the AUDIO HERE.

***

Heidi & donkey

The Mayor of HeidiTown poses with Alma, an old lady donkey at Longhopes Donkey Shelter. Photo by Christine Forster, all rights reserved.

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and travel across Colorado.

Before I tell you what’s happening this weekend, I want to tell you about this month’s HeidiTown.com Gives Back recipient. Every month, I personally select a Colorado-based nonprofit organization to introduce to the community and be featured on the blog all month long.

In my work as a freelance writer in Colorado, I’ve had the opportunity to write about many wonderful organizations and realized HeidiTown was an additional platform where I can give them support.

Last month’s featured nonprofit was Freedom Service Dogs, an organization that trains shelter dogs to help military vets returning with physical disabilities or mental trauma.

This month’s featured organization is Longhopes Donkey Shelter located in Bennett, Colorado. They are one of only a handful of donkey rescues in the country. I’ve had the opportunity to visit the facility and meeting a donkey will smash all the stereotypes you once held about these animals. For more information about Longhopes go to my blog and click on the HeidiTown.com Gives Back Campaign on the right hand side of the page.

St. Patrick's Day FCAnd now, on to the weekend. It’s already mid-March and that means St. Patrick’s Day. I am more than a little excited that the holiday falls on a Saturday this year. Here in Fort Collins don’t miss the big parade downtown and after party in Old Town Square. The parade runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the party starts immediately after. Get all the details at DowntownFortCollins.com.

Speaking of things Irish, the Rocky Mountain Irish Festival, which started as the Fort Collins Irish Festival in 2008, will be returning to Fort Collins Civic Center Park this year. So mark September 28 through the 30th on your calendar and join me in a jig at this very fun event.

Fort Collins isn’t the only place to celebrate being green this weekend. Denver has a huge parade and throws a big party too, and other towns up all around Colorado will be partying, especially since it’s a Saturday – so it’s very likely there’s a St. Patrick’s Day event near you.

In Boulder you can even witness the World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade at Conor O’Neills, a great Irish pub on 13th Street. To keep up on all the stuff happening in Boulder, go to BoulderDowntown.com.

Celtic Tenors by Barry McCall

Celtic Tenors, photo by Barry McCall, all rights reserved.

If you’d like a classy St. Patrick’s Day event, check out the Celtic Tenors at Union Colony Civic Center in Greeley. This international sensation tours the world, and will bring you to tears with their amazing rendition of Irish Classics. Get more information about the Celtic Tenors at Celtic-Tenors.com, and find out more about their concert at greeleygov.com/UCCC.

While in Greeley, you should check out my favorite pub in all of Colorado, Patrick’s Irish Pub on 8th Avenue. My husband and I are fans of true pubs, and this place fits the bill. If you haven’t been to downtown Greeley lately, you’ve been missing out.

Here’s a nutty event happening at Powderhorn Mountain Resort in Mesa, Colorado. It’s the 3rd Annual Dummy Jump with a St. Patrick’s Day theme. I love these crazy mountain resort events, like the Cardboard Classic in Steamboat Springs. I participated in that one and will never forget sliding down the mountain in our cardboard shotski… that event coincides with the Steamboat Springalicious Festival in April. More at Steamboat.com.

But I digress, back to the event this weekend in Powderhorn. Teams build a dummy and then it is sent off a huge ski jump. The judging criteria for the dummy jump are the best! Your dummy jump is judged on amplitude, creativity, structure and destruction on impact. You gotta love that last one. To learn more go to Powderhorn.com.

That’s all the time I have this week. I invite you to join the town’s block party on Facebook at Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB, or follow my shenanigans on Twitter @HeidiTown or join the town on Google Plus. Until next week, I will see you online!

Thanks for listening and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

The following is the transcript from my HeidiTown weekly segment on KRFC 88.9 FM.  If you prefer, you can listen to the audio HERE.

***

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and travel around Colorado. Here’s what’s happening the weekend of March 2nd through the 4th, 2012.

Great Plates 2012First, Great Plates has started here in Fort Collins. This dining tradition encourages people to try out restaurants around downtown Fort Collins during this two week event running from March 1 through the 14th. Thirty downtown restaurants are participating this year. From gourmet dining experiences to burgers and pizza, this is the time to experience all the amazing restaurants this town has to offer. New this year, are the breakfast and lunch specials that will be available at restaurants like the Silver Grill and Mugs. Learn more about Great Plates of Downtown at DowntownFortCollins.com.

There are two great winter festivals happening this weekend.

In Leadville it’s the Annual Ski Joring Competition and Crystal Carnival. This is one of my favorite Colorado towns because the wild west really comes alive in Leadville. The town is also home to one of the best museums in the State, the National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum. I actually had no desire to go to a mining museum, because it sounded boring, but I was so glad that my husband insisted. It’s amazing and absolutely worth touring on your next trip to Leadville. Visit MiningHallofFame.org for hours and directions.

Skijoring in Leadville at Crystal Carnival

Skijoring competition during Crystal Carnival in Leadville, Colorado. Photo by Steve Sunday (www.sundayphotography.com), all rights reserved.

The Crystal Carnival commemorates the original winter sports festival that was held in Leadville in 1896. The town has been hosting ski joring competitions since 1949, and the event entails a horse-and-rider team pulling a skier down a snow-packed road over jumps while spearing rings and being timed. The competition draws teams from all over the country.

If you are thinking about making a winter trip to Leadville, this is the weekend to do it. Other Crystal Carnival events include Nordic Springs on Harrison Avenue, a Mt. Massive Mush sled dog race, the Mineral Belt Mayhem, a paintball biathlon, a kids’ parade and lots more. Go to VisitLeadvilleColorado.com for all the details.

One of Colorado’s most famous festivals occurs this weekend. It’s Frozen Dead Guy Days in Nederland, and despite being just over a decade old, it has received national and international attention. With an actual frozen dead guy at the center of it all, this event fits the rather wacky personality of the Town of Nederland. If coffin racing, frozen t-shirt competitions and polar plunging is your thing, you won’t want to miss this festival. Go to FrozenDeadGuyDays.org for more.

Here’s an interesting show happening now through April 30th at the Forney Museum of Transportation in Denver. For lovers of classic cars, you might want to check out the over two dozen Classic Chevy Corvettes on display now. Spanning the years of 1953 to present, you can see one of only 300 hand built Corvette convertibles, a 1962 race car, and more. Visit this museum online at ForneyMuseum.org.

Remember, HeidiTown is not a calendar of event, but stuff the Mayor likes, and as many of you now know, I really, really like trains, and there’s yet another train show scheduled for this weekend. The Rocky Mountain Toy Train Show runs Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 5 at the Denver Merchandise Mart. This is a 120,000 square foot toy train extravaganza. They have everything from how-to clinics to door prizes. Kids of all ages, including my age, will enjoy this event. Alll aboard at RockyMountainToyTrainShow.com.

The Mayor holds a Colorado Rapids Flag

The Mayor holds a Colorado Rapids Flag. Photo by Ryan Schlaefer, all rights reserved)

Lastly, here’s another fact about the Mayor that I haven’t revealed yet on the radio. I’m a crazy soccer fan. We’ve had season tickets to the Colorado Rapids for a number of years now and I’ve become more and more involved with one of the fan associations. If you’re a soccer fan, we’ve put together viewing parties in Fort Collins for the Rapids away games and I will be sharing this information on HeidiTown’s Facebook page.

If you haven’t yet joined the town’s block party on Facebook, you can find us Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB. I’m also on Twitter @HeidiTown and on Google Plus.

That’s all for this week!  Thanks for listening and until next time, I will see you online.