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Meet Me in Meeker, Part One: Shopping in Meeker, Colorado

As some of you know, I grew up in a small town in the Pacific Northwest and I have a real affinity for communities where the cows — or in Meeker’s case, the sheep — outnumber the people.

Meet Me in Meeker, Part One. Shopping downtown. HeidiTown.com

Meeker, Colorado

Meeker is located about one hour and 40 minutes north of Grand Junction and three hours and 45 minutes northwest of Denver. When they asked me to be a judge for this year’s Jammin’ Lamb Festival, I answered a resounding “yes” because I’d been looking for an excuse to visit the town ever since we stayed in Rangely, Meeker’s neighbor, and one of the friendliest Colorado towns that I’ve ever encountered.

Jammin’ Lamb Fest, a culinary competition, is part of the Meeker Classic Sheepdog Trials, which I previously wrote about here.

We pulled into town in early September and despite summer drawing to a close the town’s proximity to the White River had kept it green. The area surrounding the town of approximately 2,300 is really quite lovely. Continue reading

Charming Colorado towns along the US Pro Cycling Challenge route

Owl Creek Pass from Visit Montrose

Owl Creek Pass (Photo courtesy Visit Montrose) Click the photo to go to Visit Montrose on Facebook.

Colorado is now home to the most challenging cycling race in the United States, the US Pro Cycling Challenge. The race is 683 miles, attracts world class cyclists and winds its way through some of Colorado’s most charming towns.

There are 126 riders in the race from 24 countries including Boulder, Colorado’s own Taylor Phinney, who secured two fourth place finishes at the London, Olympics.

The US Pro Challenge gets underway on Monday, August 20 and runs through August 26.

The race is reason enough to head up to the Rockies during the week of US Pro Challenge, but here are some extra incentives from the Mayor of HeidiTown.

Stage One – Durango to Telluride

Durango is home to one of my favorite breweries and it’s not just the Durango Brewery beer that makes me love this place – it’s the hammock chairs on the brewery’s patio.   Plus, this is the 3rd oldest micro-brewery in Colorado, which is pretty damn cool.

Telluride is one of the most beautiful places I have ever visted. If you haven’t witnesses it for yourself, it’s time to go.

Stage Two – Montrose to Crested Butte

There are two reasons to love Montrosechocolate and wine. Of course, there are other reasons too, like fly fishing, hiking, biking, golfing, rafting, Black Canyon National Park and more, but chocolate and wine do it for me.

The Crested Butte Wild Flower Festival. It’s already happened this year, but you can still see lots of wildflowers in this breathtaking region of Colorado.

Aspen Colorado downtown by Jeremy Swanson

Downtown Aspen, photo by Jeremy Swanson. Click the photo to go to AspenChamber.org.

Stage Three – Gunnison to Aspen

The area around Gunnison is truly wild. Scenic byways and wildness areas abound. Be sure to pack your camera when visiting.

I enjoy reminding people that Aspen, Colorado is more than just a ski town and more than just a place to spot celebrities. Aspen is an authentic historic mining town. The Aspen Historical Society tells the real story of Aspen.

Stage 4 – Aspen to Beaver Creek

I check a lot of calendars and get a lot of press releases, and there’s always something happening in Beaver Creek, whether it’s a wine and spirit festival, a culinary event or live music, you can always find a refined event taking place here. Like their tag line says, Beaver Creek, not exactly roughing it.

Stage 5 – Breckenridge to Colorado Springs

I like Breck because it’s a real town, not just a ski resort. Breckenridge has history and community, and you can feel both when you visit. Plus, they have some outstanding festivals like Breckenridge Oktoberfest, Ullr Fest and the International Snow Sculpture Championships.

Colorado Springs is home to my all-time favorite zoo, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. When you go, please say “hi” to the grizzly bears for me.

Aerial View Boulder Colorado

Aerial view of Boulder, Colorado. Photo courtesy of Boulder Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Stage 6 – Golden to Boulder

I was married at Boettcher Mansion on Lookout Mountain in Golden, so the town will also hold a special place in my heart. It’s also home to Coors and the Colorado Railroad Museum, so you just can’t go wrong when you visit this town.

Lately, my fondness for Boulder has been food-related, and that’s because the city is home to some of my favorite restaurants in Colorado including The Kitchen and The Mediterranean. To keep up with the food scene in Boulder, I recommend following food blogger, Grace Boyle at Grace (full) Plate.

Stage 7 – Denver

What can I say? I love Denver, and it’s quite impossible for me to pick the one thing I love the most.

So there you have it; the seven stages of this seven day race and my two-cents about the towns that will be hosting each stage. Go to USAProCyclingChallenge.com  to learn more about the US Pro Cycling Challenge.

What’s happening in Colorado this weekend,June 1-3, 2012, & beyond (HeidiTown on the Radio)

It’s the first weekend in June and the following is the transcript from my radio show on KRFC 88.9 FM.  Find out what’s happening around Colorado this weekend, plus a look ahead at the busy month of June.

If you’d rather listen to the show CLICK HERE.

***

Colorado

Proud to be writing about Colorado. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

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

In just a couple weeks I’m heading up to TBEX, the world’s largest gathering of travel bloggers. This year the event is being held right here in Keystone, Colorado and writers from around Sydney, Australia to Paris, France are attending. I’m excited to be representing Colorado at this event. Tourism is one of the most important industries in our state, and I’m proud to have carved out my little niche in this dynamic industry.

Now… on to the show.

Here’s the lineup for June 1 through June 3, 2012.

It’s First Friday Art Walk across the state this weekend, and I recommend using this as an excuse for a date night!

This Saturday, here in Fort Collins check out Global Village Museum’s World Rhythms in Old Town Square. Seven bands will perform live World Music from 1 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.. Dance to the beat of African drums, swing your hips to some Latin tunes and tap your toes to Celtic jams. Enjoy craft beer, international vendors booth, and new this year, the Rio Patio featuring margs and salsa. For more information on this events and other fun happenings in Fort Collins go to DowntownFortCollins.com.

Berthoud Day Parade, Berthoud, Colorado

The Berthoud Day Parade attracts thousands of spectators. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

Also on Saturday it’s the 58th Annual Berthoud Day in Berthoud, Colorado. I am excited to announce to the KRFC listeners that I will be emceeing this event. The day starts with a huge parade at 11 am that winds through this charming small town, followed by a big celebration in Berthoud Park with several stages, a pizza eating contest, a beer garden and lots more. Bring the entire family out to enjoy Berthoud Day. Go to BerthoudColorado.com to keep tabs on this event and this town.

Looking for a foot-stomping good time? Look no further than the third annual Rocky Mountain Old-Time Music Festival. The event will be held at Parrish Ranch just west of Berthoud, Colorado on June 1 through 3rd, and the ranch will be alive with the sounds of fiddle, banjo, guitar, washboards and more. If you love old-time music you won’t to miss this musical event. For info go to the Central Rockies Old-Time Music Association website at TheCROMA.org, that’s TheCROMA.org.

Lots of stuff is happening in Denver this weekend, here are the highlights… the long awaited Toyota Elephant Passage is opening at the Denver Zoo. The 41st People’s Fair is taking place in Civic Center Park. This is a laid back event where I enjoy listening to the many different bands, doing a little shopping, a little drinking and a little people watching.

While in Denver, check out the Chalk Art Festival in Larimer Square. I have not yet had the opportunity to experience this event, but I’ve been told it’s really amazing. You can check out some of the past chalk paintings at DenverChalkArt.com or follow them on Facebook.

I want to mention that Film on the Rocks starts Monday, June 4 at Red Rocks. If you’ve never been to this event, it’s a good time. This year’s movie lineup includes one of my personal favorites, Office Space, and other films such as Bridesmaids and Wayne’s World. For everything happening at this iconic Colorado venue this summer go to RedRocksOnline.com.

1940s WWII ball

Party goers check out a WWII era plane at the 1940s Ball in Boulder, Colorado. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

Lots of other stuff is going on this weekend, but I’m going to take this opportunity to look ahead at some June events that should be on your calendar, including one of my favorite events of the entire year, the 1940s WWII Era Ball. This year’s ball takes place on June 16 at the Boulder Airport. Watch for a write up about this one-of-a-kind event on HeidiTown.com on June 1st.

Also, I hope you’ve already marked June 23 and 24th on your calendar. It’s the 23rd Annual Colorado Brewers’ Festival in Fort Collins at Civic Center Park. This is one of the most highly anticipated beer events in the State, and for good reason. More than 40 Colorado breweries will be represented this year, and there is also a reunion show scheduled for 12 Cents for Marvin. More at DowntownFortCollins.com.

I’m running out of time, so I have to wrap up, but for more be sure to visit the blog at HeidiTown.com and join the town’s block party on Facebook at Facebook.com/HeidiTown.comonFB.

You can also follow me on Twitter @HeidiTown where I tweet tons of event and festival info or circle the town on Google Plus.

Thanks for listening! I hope to see you at a festival this weekend!  Happy 1st weekend of June!

Two topnotch Oktoberfests in Colorado

Greeley Oktoberfest Colorado

The Polka Nuts kept the crowds dancing at the Greeley Oktoberfest 2010. Photo by R.T. Schlaefer.

For the past several weeks I’ve done a lot of chatting about Oktoberfests, and this is because I think, when done right, they are such fun and unique festivals.

There are two Oktoberfests fast approaching that I want to bring to your attention. You will not find an eighties cover band headlining these fests, because both work to provide authentic Oktoberfest experiences that embrace and emphasize Northern Colorado’s rich German heritage.

Last year I attended the Greeley Oktoberfest for the first time, and was impressed. It’s a large event, occurring over two days. This year, the festival runs this weekend,  September 23-24, 2011.

Read all about the Greeley Oktoberfest here.

The 1st Annual Berthoud Oktoberfest is being held October 1, in the darling town of Berthoud, Colorado. Located just 40 minutes from Denver and just 10 minutes south of Loveland, Berthoud is steeped in German heritage.

Read all about the Berthoud Oktoberfest here.

 

 


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