On our way to Denver, we attempted to go to the Coors Brewery in Golden, CO but it was closed (thanks a lot, website...) Vowing to go back the next day, we continued our journey to Denver. We absolutely loved it! Denver is so nice with a lot to do. After visiting here, we will definitely be adding it to our lists of possible places for a career. We parked and headed to the first Thai restaurant we saw, Wild Bangkok. Stuffed with delicious food, we set off to walk around the 16th Street Mall downtown. We stopped in Niketown, Forever 21, and Starbucks (surprise, surprise). We took a stroll to the beautiful capitol building and then back to the car to look for the University of Colorado… instead, we found Trivoli Student Union. Thinking it was the CU hotspot we explored, we discovered that this was not the main campus for CU, and the union was actually shared with two other schools. Not wanting to waste a trip, we set off to find the art building. On the walk there, we found a renovated gallery that was currently displaying the work of an architect; one of his buildings turned out to be Christine’s favorite house in Palm Desert! After enjoying student work in the art building and a quick photography moment with a campus cathedral, we headed to Melanie’s apartment.
The rest of the night was filled with reminiscing and swapping stories about studying abroad in Spain to Jess’ laughing delight. Mel treated us to a scrumptious dinner at the Cherry Cricket in downtown Cherry Creek, a bar & grill featured on the Food Network for their burgers.
The next day Christine and Jess headed back to downtown Golden for a free tour of the Coors Brewery. The bus took us on a mini-excursion around town to see the largest cobblestone building in the United States, the murals of the five historic town figures and the road to Buffalo Bill’s grave. Dropping us off at Coors, we saw one of the original copper kettles that was used for fermentation back in the day (which was a Wednesday). As usual we were questioned about the legitimacy of our licenses since our birthdays are only two days apart. After gaining approval we set off on our audio tour around the brewery. We were surprised by all the different brands they produce along side their biggest seller Coors Light (like Molson, Killians and Blue Moon to name a few). During the tour we received one taste of beer and then after we had THREE FREE BEERS! Success! Christine tried Batch 19 (a pre-prohibition brew), Colorado Native (only available in Colorado), and Winter Fest (only available in certain test markets, of which Denver isn't one of them. Jess tried Batch 19, Winter Fest, and Killians (yes I am already well aware of the taste of Irish Red, I couldn’t resist a free one, on tap, straight from the brewery). After way too much money and time in the gift shop, we headed to Boulder!
Pearl Street is where it is at in Boulder! This street is precious in appearance and jam packed of unique shops and restaurants. Yes, the rumors are true, many hippies reside here (the summer must be hopping with people). Our first stop on the street was a little vintage store. Christine bought a few shirts and Jess found a knit hat and a Beatles record (YAY!) We then enjoyed some happy hour sushi with soup and tea to warm up. We then walked to a cute poster store where Christine found six postcards she couldn’t live without. Unfortunately, since we are poor, we had no cash and the woman only took credit cards for $4 and up. Well, these six postcards only cost $3, so C offered to grab a couple more cards, but the woman insisted she just have them for free! :) After a bit more walking around we were cold again, so the only reasonable solution Jess could think of was Starbucks. We asked the barista if the University of Colorado was worth a stroll. He replied, “if you are bundled for the cold” looked us up and down and added, “so no you shouldn’t go.” Taking his advice, we headed back to the car. Along the way we found a cool art gallery that had inspiring quotes from artists and authors all around the perimeter of the building. To wrap up the trip we attempted to drive around campus and then headed back to Melanie’s. For dinner we enjoyed a Mediterranean meal.
The next morning we woke up with Melanie at 6 in the morning (sweet Lord that was early). We gathered up our things, packed the car, said our goodbyes and hit the road by 6:45 a.m. A Starbucks stop for breakfast and we were off on the painfully dull trek across Kansas. Rain and flat farms as far as the eye could see. Lovely. There was excitement on the horizon, the OZ Museum (and Winery J) so, of course, we took a detour to explore. Just in the nick of time! We had about fifteen minutes before it closed. The place was full of Oz artifacts dating back to 1900 from all over the world. There were books, posters, movies, plays, board games, shoes, and even a haunted forest. After we got our fill, we ran through the rain to the OZ Winery. The labels were hilarious and the were samples free. Needless to say, we pulled up a chair at the bar and quickly made friends with the girl working. After many samples, we each bought a few bottles. Christine got Click!, OEO, and Emerald City Lights. Jessica bought Yellow Brick Road, Witch Gone Good, Squished Witch, and Lion’s Courage (and received a free tote!). She then kindly recommended another winery on our way, so we stopped there too. At this winery they have a ton of wines we had never seen, including Elderberry, Elderflower, and Rhubarb. So good and so strange! Nothing like a couple wine tastings before a hockey game, right...?
Finally arriving in Topeka, Kansas we grabbed a smoothie at Juice Stop (HOORAY) and then headed to the rink to support RoadRunner hockey. After a misunderstanding at will call, we found our seats and watched the boys win. The post game party was at Old Chicago. As Eric helped himself to the player buffet, we order our usual (beer and pizza J). Stuffed, we headed back to Judy and Merlin’s home to catch up and hit the hay.
The next day we woke up to Judy offering to make us breakfast (best waffles ever, thanks, Judy!) Eric got home from the morning skate and stretch and we all headed to Panera then the movies to see the new Denzel flick Unstoppable (we definitely recommend it!) Night #2 of RoadRunners hockey was much rowdier than the first. The most exciting part, Eric played the last seven minutes of the game after the other goalie was ejected from the game for fighting... and hitting another player with his blocker (yikes). 100% saved shots! Great job Eric J The RoadRunners pulled off another win, with many fights to entertain the crowd. After we headed to the Blind Tiger to celebrate the victory and once again ordered way too much food. Exhausted, we all headed to bed.
On our last morning some of us had a bit more trouble getting out of bed than others... At last we were ready to go to lunch at HuHot (like BD’s Mongolian Grill). Jess unfortunately, spent most of the meal comparing it to her old place of employment. HuHot wins the seating battle with more space and booth options and on scrumptious Asian-themed appetizers, but Mongo wins on sauce, market area choices in general, and entertainment (they used spatulas at the grill - lame). After a few errands we headed back to the house to say our goodbyes and to bring flowers for Judy’s birthday J Sad to get back on the road we definitely dragged our feet, not leaving until 4:30 in the afternoon. Whoops. See you in St. Louis!
M: "I didn't like beer until I became a teacher."
M: "MISS LIM NEEDS A DRINK!"
J: "Can I just have half a glass of Killians?"
Coors Bartender: "Sure! Want me to fill up the top half?"
J: (to Christine) "Gotchya!"
C: "I was in the picture?!"
Hippie: "Don't take a picture of me until I put my face on!"
Coors rule: "NO SHARING!"