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Travel + Leisure gives Colorado the mountain lion’s share of America’s Favorite Mountain Towns

June 25, 2014

Any doubt which state has America’s most favorite mountain towns? Not to those of us who live in and love the great state of Colorado.

But Travel + Leisure magazine has legitimized what those of us in the know have known all along in its list of America’s 20 Favorite Mountain Towns.

Aspen’s No. 1 and Estes Park is No. 2.

About Aspen, the magazine said, “With 14,000-foot peaks, Aspen is a marquee destination for skiing. But America’s No. 1 mountain town and overall favorite town keeps the party going year round with festivals celebrating art, food, wine, and music. There’s even the Aspen Ideas Festival, which is appropriately suited to a town voted No. 3 for both its festivals and its intelligent locals. (Aspenites also happened to rank No. 2 for attractiveness.) In this laid-back yet moneyed town, it’s not unusual to see billionaires and ski bums elbow-to-elbow, throwing back beers at watering holes like the Aspen Brewing Co. and Hops Culture.”

T+L said about Estes Park, “This popular gateway town for visitors to Rocky Mountain National Park got the top vote for coolest motels for good reason: many well-oiled operations like the Western-themed Saddle and Surrey have been in the same hospitable family for generations. Estes Park ranked No. 2 for both its active people and its charming town square, Bond Park, surrounded by boutiques and sweet shops. And it came in No. 4 for cool souvenirs, including the signature “chainsaw bear”—a totem-like bear carved using, you guessed it, a chainsaw.”

Moving down the list, Telluride took No. 5, Boulder boasted No. 6, Snowmass Village ranked No. 12, hooray for Ouray at No. 13, Leadville lept to No. 14 and Breckenridge completed the Colorado contenders at No. 17.

Check out the rest of the picks at www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-favorite-mountain-towns/2?xid=JustIn061714FavoriteMountainTowns.


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CU Boulder assistant golf coaches will be on bags during U.S. Open

June 16, 2014

How many times have both assistant golf coaches from the same university caddied for a former player in a U.S. Open in the same year? 

Nearly never. But that’s what Brent Franklin and Brandon White, assistants for the University of Colorado women’s and men’s golf teams, will do at this week’s U.S. Women’s Open.  Play begins Thursday in Pinehurst, N.C., on the same course the men completed their championship Sunday.

Both coaches will be caddying for former players they coached, Franklin for CU graduate Jessica Wallace and White for Northern Colorado’s Carleigh Silvers, whom he tutored when he was the Bears’ coach before joining Roy Edwards’ staff last summer.

Wallace and Silvers will be the first players from their alma maters to play in a U.S. Women’s Open.

Wallace, 23, a native of Vancouver, B.C., transferred to CU from Pepperdine before her junior season and credits Franklin as the major factor in her heading to Boulder.

She qualified on May 19 in Georgia, carding a 77-71—148 at Dunwoody Country Club; that was one off the lead in tying for second as she was one of three to advance from that site’s sectional.  Wallace also has competed in two LPGA events, both Canadian Opens. She missed the cut last year by two strokes.

There was little hesitation who Wallace wanted as her caddy for the most important tournament in her young career.

“Jess sent me a text right after she finished … something like, ‘I think I just qualified for the U.S. Open,’ and we spoke on the phone five minutes later,” Franklin said.

“It was an obvious decision, he’s been my swing coach ever since I transferred to Colorado,” Wallace said. “He was a big reason that I decided to come to Colorado.  He’s caddied for me before, and I trust his opinion so it made sense for me to have him on the bag.”

Franklin has extensive caddying experience, from local and regional to LPGA events across the nation and overseas in Japan.

“I caddied for my wife (Kristine) a few times when she was a professional, and caddied for (former Buff) Emily (Talley) a couple of weeks ago,” said Franklin, who just completed his 12th year as Anne Kelly’s assistant.  “I basically caddy almost every single day for the girls when you’re coaching them in a tournament.  You’re not carrying their clubs, but that’s what a coach does.  You’re mainly there to help them make good decisions.”

Talley, featured on Golf Channel’s “Big Break” last year, asked the longtime Buff assistant to be on her bag in the LPGA’s ShopRite Classic.

“There will definitely be a sense of comfort and familiarity in having Brent caddy for me,” Wallace said.  “Really, there has been nobody that has seen me play golf more than Brent, so there will be a calming factor having him out there with me.”

And while a first-timer is always a long shot, Wallace would join an exclusive CU club if she should win: Hale Irwin won three U.S. Opens (1974, 1979, 1990) and Steve Jones captured one (1996), giving the school four in all.

White, too, has a solid history of caddying, among those for his former roommate of three years, Kevin Stadler, a PGA Tour event winner.

“As a player, playing in the U.S. Open was always a goal, so being in it even as a caddy is going to be a lot a fun,” White said.  He advanced to the sectional qualifying on a couple of occasions.

Silvers, also 23, graduated from UNC in 2013 and has since, “dedicated herself 100 percent to professional golf,” according to White.  “For her to qualify for the U.S. Open in her first year as a pro is nothing short of an amazing accomplishment.  She’s had a tremendous year … she’s made the cut in every event she’s played in this season, about 15 events between the Cactus Tour in Arizona and the Symetra Tour.”

This is the first time that the same course is hosting both the men’s and women’s U.S. Open tournaments in back-to-back weeks.  Germany’s Martin Kaymer was the wire-to-wire winner of the men’s U.S. Open on Sunday, finishing with a 9-under 271 to win by eight strokes.

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Travel + Leisure picks CU Boulder and its city in its top picks

April 30, 2014

Travel + Leisure magazine continues to hand out “best places” awards to CU Boulder and its town.

In its recent issue, T+L named Boulder No. 6 in its list of “America’s Best College Towns.” The magazine said, “With its 300-plus days of sunshine each year, the gorgeous slopes of the Flatirons at the edge of town, and locals who could be cast in commercials for a healthy, active lifestyle, Boulder naturally scored near the top of the class among college towns.

“Hop on a bike from B-cycle, the town’s bike-sharing program, and cruise down Pearl Street, whose shops specialize in the local, from jewelry to cheese to beer. Treat yourself to a fresh pasta dinner at Frasca Food and Wine, one of the nation’s best Italian restaurants.

See the whole article at www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-college-towns-2013/7.

T+L also included CU Boulder in its list of “America’s Best College Bars.” The mag said, “Catacombs is more than a mile from the campus, hidden below the Hotel Boulderado. You won’t find much information on its website either. But none of these things matter in terms of loyal patronage.

“What you will find in this cavernous watering hole are three pool tables, two ping-pong battlegrounds, and six old-school video games, including Frogger. The bar hosts an epic karaoke night, an open-mic night, and, its biggest draw – trivia night. Oh, and the $3 microbrew happy hour probably doesn’t hurt either.”

For more information, visit www.catacombsbar.net. For the rest of the story, visit www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-college-bars/2.

Read about Boulder being America’s second-happiest city.

Read about Boulder being America’s least obese city.

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Boulder second happiest city in America, poll claims

April 21, 2014

Apparently Boulder is not only skinny, but it’s happy city, too.

Coming off a recent study that Boulder is the least-obese city in America, the People’s Republic of Boulder is ranked second among America’s happiest cities, according to Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index and as reported by Westword.

The Gallup-Healthways report said: “Boulder is famous for its colorful Western history, being a choice destination for hippies in the late 1960s, and as home of the main campus of the University of Colorado, the state’s largest university. Furthermore, the city of Boulder frequently acquires top rankings in health, well-being, quality of life, education, and art.”

Fort Collins was ranked third in the study, which said the home of Colorado State University “is known as one of the towns that inspired the design of Main Street, U.S.A. inside the main entrance of the many ‘Disneyland’-style parks run by The Walt Disney Company around the world.”

The Provo-Orem, Utah earned the moniker as the happiest city in America in the poll?



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KBCO honors Record Store Day Saturday with first vinyl Studio C release

April 14, 2014

Radio station KBCO, 97.3 FM is honoring Record Store Day with the first release of tracks on vinyl from the live performance studio known as KBCO Studio C.

In celebration of Record Store Day on Saturday, KBCO will release two songs on a 7-inch vinyl record benefiting the Food Bank of the Rockies.  The record features “Lightning Bolt” by Jake Bugg and “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors, both recorded live in KBCO Studio C.

KBCO has hosted thousands of intimate KBCO Studio C sessions with artists and bands from around the world for more than 25 years.  A limited number of vinyl releases will be sold at two local record stores — Twist & Shout Records in Denver and Albums on the Hill in Boulder. The releases are $10 each with a limit of one per person starting at 10 a.m. Saturday at both stores.

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Another ‘tip’ of the hat to generous Coloradans

April 9, 2014

Colorado again fared well in a study of tippers.

In an analysis of customers of the GrubHub delivery service, for the year from March 28, 2013, to March 27, 2014, Colorado (15.7 percent) finished third among the states, behind South Carolina (16.1) and New Hampshire (16).

And the most generous cities in the survey were all from Colorado. Boulder tipped 16.2 percent on average, followed by Denver at 15.7 percent and Fort Collins at 15.4 percent.

It’s unclear why the Centennial State cities are so nice to the delivery person.

“We have no idea why that is, but a hat tip to Colorado diners for their generosity,” company spokeswoman Allie Mack said.

See more at www.cnbc.com/id/101549522?__source=xfinity|mod&par=xfinity.

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Boulder only city in U.S. under 15 percent in obesity rates

April 7, 2014

Not surprising, Boulder ranks as the city least plagued by obesity, according to recent research by Gallup.

Two other Colorado cities — Denver and Fort Collins — ranked in the top 10.

West Virginia apparently is the most obese state; Huntington was the most obese city and two others in the state, Charlestown and Martinsburg, made the top 10.

According to the Gallup research, adult obesity rates are above 15 percent in all but one (Boulder) of the 189 metro areas that Gallup and Healthways surveyed in 2012 and 2013. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy People 2010 program had a goal of reducing obesity to 15 percent in each state. No state and only one U.S. metro area has achieved this goal.

The top 10 least obese cities were Boulder (12.4 percent obesity rate); Naples, Fla. (16.5); Fort Collins (18.2); Charlottesville, Va. (18.2); Bellingham, Wash. (18.7); San Diego (19.3); Denver (19.3); San Jose (19.5); Bridgeport, Conn. (19.6); and Barnstable Town, Mass. (19.6).

Among the most obese cities: Huntington (39.5); McAllen, Texas (38.3); Hagerstown, Md. (36.7); Yakima, Wash. (35.7); Little Rock, Ark., (35.1); Charlestown (34.6); Clarksville, Tenn. (33.8), Jackson, Miss. (33.8); Green Bay (33.0); and Rockford, Ill. (33).

Read more at www.usat.ly/1jREVSH.

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The popular Kitchen restaurant is offering $10 deals for its 10th year in business

March 10, 2014

According to Claire Walter’s blog “Culinary Colorado (read it at www.culinary-colorado.com),” The Kitchen is celebrating its 10th anniversary with $10 specials on March 16.

The Kitchen started with its celebrated restaurant on Boulder’s Pearl Street Mall and since has expanded to The Kitchen Denver in the old Gumbo’s space in LoDo at 1530 16th Street and its newest location,  The Kitchen Next Door Glendale, at 658 S. Colorado Blvd. The Kitchen’s owners’ next restaurant will be coming to the Union Station redevelopment.

The Kitchen’s ”$10 Day” includes:

  • The Kitchen Boulder, The Kitchen Upstairs Boulder and The Kitchen Denver will offer an appetizer and entrée for $10 all day. Walk in or call for reservations.
  • The Kitchen Next Door Boulder and The Kitchen Next Door Glendale will offer a two for $10 special that includes two entrées and two drinks for $10 all day (11 a.m. to close). The two Next Door locations are not taking reservations but will welcome walk-ins only. They are both offering live music from 6 to 10 p.m.

For details, visit www.thekitchen.com.

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Denver resident and actor Scott Takeda makes good in Oscar-winning ‘Dallas Buyers Club’

Colorado native Scott Takeda wasn’t able to attend the Academy Awards Sunday night, but he has come a long way from being a “lambkin” at Fort Collins High School.

The Hollywood actor-director had a vested interest in Sunday’s Oscar results. He had a part in the popular “Dallas Buyers Club,” the much-acclaimed film that earned a Best Actor Oscar for Matthew McConaughey and a Best Supporting Actor award for Jared Leto during Sunday’s 86th Academy Awards ceremony.

Call it a far cry from a journalism degree at CU Boulder. But Takeda still lives in his beloved Bonnie Brae neighborhood.

He worked at KCNC-Channel 4 for two years from 1992 to 1994, then left for a brief stint in Philadelphia. Why does he stay grounded in Denver when the bright lights of Hollywood can be intoxicating?

“My family’s here,” he said. “I married my very lovely bride. When I’m not in front of the camera, I’m behind the camera. I’m used to flying to do corporate films. I’ve (flown) 17,000 miles in six weeks.”

Takeda said that he has six agents around the country who scout potential film roles for him. As for landing his part in “Dallas Buyers Club,” he said, “My Louisiana agent contacted me about that role. Probably a couple of weeks passed. I got the call back when landing in Denver. I walked off my flight and happened to see a flight leaving for New Orleans and walked on that flight.”

As to the message of the film, Takeda is well aware of its significance.

“The topic that it brings up is so important,” he said. “AIDS awareness, and we still don’t have a cure. It’s important to say that there’s still no cure. A lot of times you shoot a film and say that’s the way it goes. But we found out in May that it debuted in the Toronto National Film Festival, which gave it such great exposure.”

As far as working with McConaughey, who lost 40-some pounds for his role, Takeda said that surprisingly the hunky actor “had a lot of energy.”

“I found him to be a complete gentleman, right up there with Will Ferrell. Really easy to work with. I was seeing the effects of his weight loss, but it was impossible for him not to be incredibly nice. He stayed in character, but during periods in the makeup trailer, he would drop character.”

In addition to Takeda’s role in “Dallas Buyers Club”, his movie credits include “Everything Must Go” with comedic actor Ferrell, “Little Fockers” with the great Robert De Niro, Disney’s “Lemonade Mouth” and Lifetime’s “Secret Lives of Wives.”

For now, Takeda just returned from Los Angeles shooting “Gone Girl,” starring Ben Affleck, which will come out in October. He’s also appearing in a new CW series “Star Crossed,” slated to air on April 7.

“My lovely bride and I are passionate about the Denver Dumb Friends League (as am I), and we’re raising money for the Furry Scurry. We’ll be raising money actively for the next two months.”

Denver resident Takeda has a small part in the Oscar nominated fil, "Dallas Buyers Club." Takeda attended Fort Collins High School and the University of Colorado. He still lives in the Bonnie Brae neighborhood in Denver.

Denver resident Scott Takeda has a small part in the Oscar nominated film, “Dallas Buyers Club,” that stars Matthew McConaughey. Takeda attended Fort Collins High School and the University of Colorado. He lives in the Bonnie Brae neighborhood in Denver. (Photos by Truth Entertainment II/Voltage Pictures and Courtesy of Scott Takeda)Scott 477


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