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SQS006: How to Become an AirBnB Host in Denver with James Carlson

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SQS006:How To Become an Airbnb Host In Denver


James Carlson from James Carlson Real Estate regular runs classes on how to become an Airbnb host in Denver.  He and I discuss the following in this podcast:

  • How he got into hosting.

 

  • The sheer amount of money he earned in a short amount of time.

 

  • What a great host needs to do.

 

  • Pros and Cons

 

  • How to be legally compliant in Denver

We all know that Denver is finally on the radar for destination travel in the U.S. With the increase in tourism to the city of Denver and the state of Colorado, there is a huge opportunity for would be Airbnb hosts.

Who’s Visiting Denver?

  • Families

 

  • Adventurers

 

  • Convention Attendees (Examples)
    • Denver Comic Con
    • The Outdoor Retailer Conference

 

 

  • Business Travelers

 

I could go on, but, you get the picture. With all of this tourism, the question becomes…where is everyone staying? You may have thought about running an Airbnb, but wasn’t sure about it. This episode is a must listen if you would like to make money this way.

Not in Denver? Doesn’t matter-you will learn a lot, and then research your city’s specific regulations regarding short-term rentals.

Resources

  • Here is the link to Jame’s event calendar so that you can catch his next class!

 

 

 

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50 Cool Things To Do In and Around Denver



* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Let’s be clear, I’m constantly amazed by all of the incredible stuff there is to do in Denver and the surrounding suburbs. So, I decided to put together a list that included the typical and not so typical activities that are awesome to do, pretty affordable and fun. Here’s my list of 50 cool things to do in and around Denver!

50 Cool Things to Do

  • Comic Con-This is my first year attending and I can’t wait! Every year I would watch all of the sci-fi enthusiasts (read my people) converge downtown at the Convention Center with the Big Blue Bear. This year I look forward to being one of those people. I plan on sharing a post about my experience soon!

 

  • Casa Bonita-Most Denver kids have gone to Casa Bonita at least once in their lives. There is nothing better than indoor cliff diving and mediocre food to make life complete. The sopapillas are pretty decent though.

 

  • Colfax 1/2 or Full Marathon-After being on my to-do list for the past 5 years, I finally ran the Colfax 1/2 Marathon. Without training…like a crazy person. Fortunately, I was able to finish it but by mile 8 was questioning the decision to run/walk it without training. Best moments included: running through the zoo and checking out the animals, discovering that there was a nice ladies restroom open in the zoo, running under the giant American flag on Colfax,  the Firemen without shirts, and actually finishing the race.

 

  • Denver Cruiser Ride-Is an epic event that had gotten crazy big and was driving the founders crazy. They seem a lot happier this year after changing the format to 5 rides this summer instead of every Wednesday. Ride with hundreds of bike enthusiasts throughout the city of Denver, wear a costume, listen to music, and just have a great time.

 

  • Catch a Cirque du Soleil Show-We are fortunate enough to have Cirque du Soleil stop through Denver basically every year. This year’s show is so good that I’ve decided to see it twice.

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  • Denver Center for Performing Arts Show-It’s official, Denverites don’t need to go to NYC to see theater. We are fortunate enough to enjoy a ton of amazing musicals and other serious shows produced a the DCPA. Take advantage of the $10 DCPA access shows (plus a $1.50 processing fee per ticket). Those tickets get picked up QUICK.

 

  • Afternoon Tea at The Brown Palace-What is it about afternoon tea that is so appealing to so many people? I recently had a chance to enjoy it again at the Brown Palace and I can say that for me, it’s the opportunity to spend hours eating tiny bites of yumminess while spending time with family and friends.

 

  • Underground Music Showcase-There is a phenomenal music scene in Denver. The UMS is the event to hang out with other music enthusiasts who can’t get enough of live music.

 

  • Red Rocks-To be honest, I don’t need a reason to go to Red Rocks. I just go, all the time. It’s almost magical to me and I can’t get enough. If you haven’t had the chance to attend Movies on the Rocks, Yoga on the Rocks, or a concert-you need to add this to your list of things to do.

 

  • Waterworld-It does get hot here and when it’s hot, Waterworld is one of the best places to cool off. The highlights: the Spacebowl, Voyage to the Center of the Earth, and the Wave Pool.

 

  • Dim Sum at Star Kitchen-It is possible to go to Star Kitchen, eat your fill with a ton of friends and only end up paying $10 a person (plus tip). Yep, that has happened. Am in love with that place.

 

  • Day in Boulder-Sometimes Boulder drives me crazy. But, sometimes it’s the town that I grew up in. Unpretentious, beautiful, and tranquil. If you’re visiting for at least 5 days-you have to spend at least an afternoon in Boulder. Here’s a link to a post I wrote about enjoying 36 Hours in Boulder. Have fun!

 

  • Day in Rocky Mountian National ParkRMNP is one of my favorite places to hang out in Colorado. It’s a quick 1 1/2 drive from Denver (depending on the day). My favorite thing to do is to go at different times of the year because the park is always changing. Love.

 

  • Happy Hour at Avanti-Is one of my favorite places to go and hang out with friends, get my drink on, and check out the Denver skyline.

 

  • Groov3 class at Dance2b-I am OBSESSED with this hip hop dance/fitness class. Leslie (the instructor) is fabulous and I look forward to sweating like a pig, listening to great music, and throwing shade at Leslie because she never sweats. How is it possible?

 

  • Rock and Roll Half Marathon-For those of you who love to run, this is a great event. I had the Rock and Roll 1/2 Marathon on my vision board for the past 5 years. I would talk about it and then back off because I was afraid. Until…I did it and had a great time. You will too!

 

  • Wing Over the Rockies-This place is awesome not just because it has a Star Wars X-Wing Fighter and is located next to a large beer garden. Yep, this place is legit.

 

  • Slam Nuba-Poetry slams are the coolest thing ever. And, Denver has an incredible community of poets who share their wisdom and artistry…not often enough. They also happen to be one of the best slam poetry teams in the U.S.

 

  • The Derby Party-There is nothing better than getting my drink on, looking cute, wearing a fascinator, and supporting education all at the same time. The Derby Party lets me do that and I look forward to attending it every year. The tickets aren’t cheap…but, it’s a wonderful event and sends kids to college/university. Yes!

 

  • The Polo Classic-Many, many years ago I went with my mother to the Polo Classic with my mom. I have no idea how she got the tickets (they’re pricey/we weren’t rich) but I still remember that experience and stepping on the divets that the horseshoes pulled up.

 

  • The Barn Party-Apparently, this event has been going on for awhile and completely off my radar. It’s also run by the same people who run the Polo Classic. It’s on my list for next year.

 

  • The Denver Botanic Gardens-Is a gorgeous oasis of calm in the city of Denver. The garden curator brings in amazing art installations that are seamlessly added into the landscape. Past exhibits included: Chihuly and Caulder.

 

  • Ohana-There is this weird trend sweeping through Denver which is Hawaiian Poke. It’s a little weird to me because…we’re not close to the ocean. Surely, this trend could go very wrong? Well, it goes really well at Ohana. Delicious.

 

  • Hanging Lake-Is worth the almost 4-hour  drive to get there. Plan on spending the night and enjoying that part of the state. When you visit please do not go into the water or stand on the log. Period, end of story. Don’t be a douche. Also, plan on soaking in Glenwood Hot Springs afterward. Your knees will thank you!

 

 

  • Denver Central Market-Finally, finally Denver has become a foodie city. There are some cool food concepts opening up and DCM is one of them. If you’re looking for: chocolate, coffee, good food, or a fish monger…visit the DCM.

 

  • Stanley Market Place-Similar to DCM, Stanley Market Place is a mixed use market. The difference: they have regular vendors including: Zero Waste, gyms, and co-working spaces.

 

  • Ride the Cherry Creek Bike Path-I”m going to double-dog dare you to ride the bike path to Cherry Creek Resevoir instead of the typical ride downtown. It’s a beautiful slightly uphill ride through the city.

 

  • Velorama Bike Event-It was with great sadness that I watched the Colorado Classic fold. For some reason, I love cycling. The Velorama is a music festival and cycling event. A great combination to attract new fans of a great sport.

 

  • Hang out in Rino, eat, drink, check out the murals-RINO used to be Denver’s Skid Row. Seriously. While it still has some skeevy pockets, overall it’s pretty awesome. There is nothing better than wandering through the alleys and checking out the newest mural, getting a flat white from Stowaway, or grabbing a beer from one of the many breweries in the area.

 

  • Jazz in the Park-For some reason I haven’t seen a lot of publicity on this event this year. But, it’s still pretty big. Go to City Park on Sunday evenings around 6:00 pm to picnic, hang out with friends, and listen to great music for free.

 

  • Put Put Golf at Skyline Park-Underneath the Downtown Clock Tower there is a put-put golf course with all things Denver.

 

  • Get Some Local Ice Cream-For a town of ridiculously fit people, there is a lot of great ice cream in town. Here are my favorites: Little Man, Sweet Cooies, and Sweet Action. I also would like to check out Rocket Ice Cream in the Lowry Neighborhood.

 

  • National Western Stock Show-Watch some bronco busting every January when the Stock Show comes into town. It is a huge event that keeps getting bigger every year.

 

  • Black American West Museum-Let’s be clear about this: there were, and still are, black cowboys and cowgirls. The Black American West Museum shares this rich history with visitors and scholars in town.

 

  • El Chapultepec-This small, slightly grimy, and musical landmark was the regular stomping grounds of Jack Kerouac. If you don’t know who he is…Google him. If you’re looking for an unpretentious place filled with great music and Coloradans-go to there.

 

  • Day trip to Estes Park-Before you reach Rocky Mountain National Park, if you’re arriving from the East (coming from Denver) then you will naturally go through Estes Park. It’s not just the home of the Stanley Hotel of the Shining infamy. It’s also a lovely mountain town with salt water taffy, a river walk one block off of Mainstreet, and  a quirky tea room called Moon Kats.

 

  • Like Professional Sports?-We have all the sports. If you’re into sports…Denver is a great town to visit. Our teams: Nuggets, Broncos, Rapids, Rockies, Avalanche, and the Denver Barbarians (rugby)

 

  • Chalk Art Festival-The first weekend of every June Larimer Square is cordoned off and filled with artists, food, and activities. The artists create gorgeous works of art that will be washed away after the weekend.

 

  • First Fridays-Art Walk in the Santa Fe Art District is one of my favorite events. Low key, great art, music, and food-it’s a great way to spend the evening with friends. Buy a glass of wine and just enjoy wandering up and down the streets. If you’re lucky enough, hopefully, you’re there when the street is blocked off.

 

  • Yoga on the Rocks-Imagine watching several thousand people do a downward dog. It’s glorious. Here’s my tips and tricks on how to have a great time the next time you go.

 

  • Any Ski Resort Closing Party before Mud Season. Those parties are legit.

 

  • Frozen Dead Guy Days-Ok, people have a hard time wrapping their heads around what this festival is. In short, it’s a festival that is a celebration of “Grandpa” a Frozen Dead Guy in Nederland. It’s a fun and interesting story.

 

  • Bolder Boulder-When I was a little girl, I would watch the elite runners pass by in a blaze of Olympic glory. It was (and still) continues to be one of the best race atmospheres in the U.S. Maybe it helps that everyone gets packed in together? Either way, if you’re a runner and you’re planning on visiting Colorado-this race may be for you.

 

  • The Royal Gorge-A few years ago The Royal Gorge attractions suffered from a pretty catastrophic fire a few years ago. Fortunately, the actual bridge wasn’t affected and the attractions have been restored.  This is a beautiful part of Colorado…just don’t pick up hikers down there…SuperMax is nearby.

 

  • The Royal Gorge Rail-The views are just stunning. After exploring some of the vineyards in this part of the state, take a ride through the Gorge via the Rail. The prices are pretty freaking reasonable too!  My favorite part is the open car.

 

  • Pike’s Peak Cog Rail-The next time you hang out in Manitou Springs (and don’t plan on hiking the Manitou Incline) I highly recommend taking the Pike’s Peak Cog Rail up the mountain. It’s STUNNING. You will feel the difference in altitude.

 

  • Pride-This event is huge! Welcoming, fun, and just a splash of crazy. Every Denverite should go to Pride.

 

  • Marade-Once one of the biggest Martin Luther King Day Parades, the Marade has gotten a bit off the radar. I did a podcast episode about it and hope that they will bring in some new energy and ideas to revive a long-standing Denver tradition.

 

  • Speakeasies Galore! There are a number of great speakeasies in Denver. My goal is to check them all out by the end of the year. Suggestions: Williams and Graham, Green Russell, Retrograde, Ste. Ellie, The Cruise Room, and B&GC

Related Posts:

 

 

 

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Pearl Street Farmers Market Denver

It’s official, Denver has a new King of the farmers market scene. This past weekend solidified this finding as I found myself wandering up and down the Pearl Street Farmers Market with the masses. Let’s be clear, there are a number of wonderful markets throughout the Metro. In fact, the Union Station Farmer’s Market is a close second but for a consistently enjoyable experience, Pearl Street is hard to beat.

The Logistics

I love that the market is on one main street. It makes it easier for patrons to shop and browse. One of the side streets  is used for food trucks and some seating, but other than that, you just have to walk up and down ONE STREET. South Pearl Street has a great look and “feel” to it with historic buildings housing bricks and mortar businesses.

Parking is a little tight because it’s in the middle of a residential and business district. Happily, the market is pretty easy to get on foot, by bike, or via light rail.

If you ride your bike to the market there is manned bike “parking” with usually 2 attendants watching over the bikes. If you park your bike there you will be handed a ticket, when you’re done with your browsing, show the attendant your ticket and then get your bike. Please remember to tip a dollar or two before you leave.

Most vendors have credit/debit card readers but I would recommend that you bring both cash and card just in case there is a problem with the card reader.

The Vendors

Are pretty affordable, varied, and passionate about the products that they share. Sometimes buying locally can be a little more expensive, but I was finding that some other local markets were significantly more expensive because of the types of vendors and products being sold.

Standout Vendors:

  • The Sophisticate’s Tea-Listen to my podcast episode with Trinity Hindman (one of the founders). What exactly is it? It is a tea concentrate I particularly love the Sophisticate’s Mountain Fog Concentrate.

 

 

  • Tlaquesalsa-I’m convinced that this is the best salsa made in Colorado. I’ve tried all three flavors (Tomatillo, Arbol, and Jalapeno) and I love all three.

Best Deal

The $10 all you can fill bag of veggies at the veggie and fruit vendor whose name I can’t remember. This stand is pretty busy and should be easy to find. Therefore, be aware that not all of the veg/fruits are grown in Colorado-but, if you’re looking to be kind to your grocery budget, this stand is for you!

Pearl Street Farmers Market

Retains an ease and approachability that similar markets seem not to have. There are tons of people walking with their kids, friends, and fur babies. The vendors seem happy to be there and it’s nice to have the option of popping into one of the many stores or restaurants that flank the market. There is a distinct lack of attitude and a very real sense of warmth.

I love this market. It’s open on Sundays from 9-1 pm.

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SQS005: How to Climb and Complete the Manitou Incline

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Manitou Incline

Aka “The Beast” is one of the coolest experiences that I’ve had in Colorado. Hard as hell, intense, a lot of mental energy. But, I got it done.

  • I went with a great Meetup Group!

 

  • Manitou Springs-Cute town next to Colorado Springs. Happy to say it has fully recovered from the mud slides from a few years ago.

 

  • Traffic from Denver to Colorado Springs-is pretty heavy. Larkspur is in between both towns and has a lot of traffic because of the Renaissance Festival.

 

  • Start early!

 

  • Parking after 2:00 pm and the free shuttle.

 

  • Chase Bank parking.

 

  • Restroom situation.

 

  • This was hard!

Equipment Used

 

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Luzia-Cirque du Soleil in Denver (a Review)

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

This might surprise some people but I am a theater geek. I love traditional shows and performances to shows that push boundaries and our imagination. Cirque du Soleil is a testament to boundary pushing and connecting with our imaginations. Every time a show comes through Denver I make a point of going to see it and this year’s show: Luzia, is no exception.

Luzia

Is a dreamy, moody, somewhat dark Cirque show and I LOVED it! In fact, this was quite possibly my favorite Cirque show and I’ve made a point of going to as many Cirque shows as possible whenever they are in town.

I liked that while there were some definite comedic parts to the show, that the show was a lot more restrained and a bit more…cerebral and whimsical than many of the shows that I’ve seen.

There is a rich symbolism in the staging of the show and the costuming is fantastic. I’m being deliberately vague about what happens in the show because I don’t want to give anything away.

The other wonderful part of the show was how incorporated natural elements into the story. Again, I don’t want to give anything away.

Tips

  • My friends and I purchased our tickets pretty early. The Big Top where they hold the show guarantees pretty good viewing from wherever you are in the tent. If at all possible, do try to avoid setting in the sections with obstructed views.

 

  • Get there early! There’s nothing worse than arriving a few minutes late and then having to wait to be seated and missing out the beginning of the show.

 

  • There are plenty of restrooms, think high-end portapotty hybrids with sinks to wash your hands.

 

  • If you sit close to the stage be aware that the performers may feel compelled to mess with you. Don’t freak out and just have fun with it.

 

  • Eat before you arrive-there is some food/snacks at the show, but I would recommend that you eat before as well.

After the Show

If you’re taking a rideshare such as LYFT, go to the gas station on the Pepsi Center grounds for pick-up. The official adddress is:

1500 7th St, Denver, CO 80204

It will be much easier to be picked up from that location. You can also take the light rail located on the North Side of Pepsi Center or catch a cab, rickshaw typically a little closer to Pepsi Center.

 

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25 Activities to Do in Denver for $10 or Less

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If you’re new to Denver, from Denver, or, are planning to visit this year here is a list of 25 activities to do in Denver for $10 or less. You constantly hear all of the stories about how expensive Denver is. While this is true, there are a ton of affordable (or free) activities that people can enjoy while they are in town.

Related Post: 36 Hours in Denver 

25 Activities to Do in Denver for $10 or Less

  • Visit Boulder-$9 round-trip

 

  • Cup of great coffee at Steam Coffee shop on Pearl Street

 

  • Rent a B-cycle-$9

 

 

  • Free work out at Civic Center Park through the Civic Center Moves program. They offer yoga and fitness classes. Hardcore!

 

  • Watch Twin Peaks Season 3 “Come to the Black Lodge” at Hooked on Colfax Wed or Sunday (Not sure how long this event will last). Buy a drink or two…

 

  • Go to your favorite Farmer’s Market and “sample check”

 

  • Play volleyball with a group of friends in Washington Park

 

  • Workout at Red Rocks (cost of gas)

 

  • Explore RINO’s murals (free)

 

  • Hop on a bike and look for Tiny Free Libraries

 

  • Have a beer and sit on the patio at Avanti

 

  • Free Walking tour

 

  • Free Days at Botanic Gardens/Denver Zoo/Denver Art Museum

 

  • Go to a cool festival: Denver Flea, The Big Wonderful, etc. ($5 dollars)

 

 

 

  • Go Hiking with a Meetup group! There’s a ton of great groups for different types of people.

 

 

 

  • Four Mile Historic Park (bring the kiddos)-$5 but it’s also free every second Friday of the month from 12-4 pm.

 

 

  • Ride your bike to Boulder on the US-36 Bikepath.

 

  • Run with your local running group. Suggestions include: Run the Bird, The Pub on Pearl Running Club (typically on Wednesdays at 6:00 pm), and Park Burger RINO running Club.  (Irish Snug is on hiatus until the end of summer)

 

 

Bonus Suggestions:

  • Grab a meal at Civic Center Eats (Food trucks)

 

  • Hang out at Denver’s Union Station and watch the world go by, stroll down Santa Fe during the next 1st Friday event (art, wine, and food)

 

 

  • Check out the Money Museum at the Federal Reserve (free), and hang out with a ton of other bike enthusiasts during the Denver Cruiser Ride.

 

Additional Travel Resources:

 

 

 

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Looking for Jobs in Denver, Colorado? Use this Guide!

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Follow Me on Instagram: Colorado Luv Hub

Looking for jobs can be a pain in the butt.  If you’re looking to move to Colorado be aware that there is also a ridiculous number of people moving to Colorado competing for jobs. One of my top posts on my personal finance blog is about moving Denver. Yep, on my personal finance blog. Fortunately,  if you’re looking for jobs here in Denver there are a ton of businesses, organizations, and non-profits to consider. I also get a large number of inquiries from people who ask if it’s a good idea to move first to Denver/Colorado and then look for a job.

Umm…No…

That’s in fact, a HORRIBLE idea. Why? Because you’re just setting yourself up for a huge amount of unnecessary stress, financially and personally as well as potential homelessness. Not even joking. In fact, everytime someone emails and asks me (should I move without a job) I just sit there shaking my damn head. This question came up so often that I’ve written two guides discussing searching for jobs in Colorado.  Don’t feel like couch surfing for the next 6 months while looking for jobs? Keep reading.

Looking for Jobs?

I would recommend creating a job search strategy. Do some research. Find out what the livable wage is in the specific Colorado city you plan on moving to. To keep things simple, I’m only going to focus only on jobs in Denver.  But, be aware that a number of the employers that are listed in this post may have jobs available in other parts of the state.

Here is how this post will work:

  • Basic job search strategies

 

  • Resources to use

 

  • Industry breakdown

 

  • Downloadable Business List

Job Search Strategy

Do you have a well-thought out job search strategy? Are you just throwing resumes anywhere and just hoping that you find a job somewhere in Colorado that pays something? Don’t do that to yourself. Sit down and create a plan. Think about the following:

  • Cost of living

 

  • Benefits

 

  • Possible commuting time (avoid commuting if at all possible)

 

  • Travel back home. If you have relatives and friends in your old state-you’ll probably want to visit them (or not LOL!)

 

  • The potential for professional growth-such as raises or promotions to different roles.

 

  • Look at other organizations where you could work similar roles in case you end up unhappy with the organization you initially sign on with.

Yes, this strategy is a little more fleshed out for those of you looking for jobs, but you’ll probably find a much better position and better pay by taking the time to consider all the items listed above.

Job Search Resources

Unfortunately, there aren’t as many resources available as I would like to see for a city with so much business growth. But, here are a few that you should definitely consider using:

  • andrewhudsonsjoblist.com-This is a comprehensive job list created by a Denverite that is accurate and reflects the changing job scene.

 

  • Hired.com-If you are in the TECH industry you need to get on this site! I met the some of the Denver team and they were great to speak with and fully committed to helping those of you in the tech community connect with your next dream job. Click here to sign up for Hired.com today. New to Hired.com? Sign up via my affiliate link and (if you’re hired) you’ll receive a $300 signing bonus per Hired.com‘s stated new hire guidelines.

 

  • LinkedIn-Don’t forget to take some time to flesh out your LinkedIn profile. Take time to research job listings and what organizations are looking for when they reach out to individuals via LinkedIn.

 

    • Your University’s job center-If you’ve just graduated (or are about to) connect with your university’s job center. Most job centers give newly graduated job seekers feedback on their resume, online presence, and interview best practices.

looking for jobs

looking for jobs

looking for jobs

 

Industries in Denver 

And in the state of Colorado, are wide-ranging and diverse. Colorado used t0 be a boom-bust state in the worst of ways. We would ride high (no pun intended) then crash badly because the state didn’t have a diversified economy. Fortunately, we finally learned our lesson and I’m proud to say that we have a ridiculous number of industries that you could be focusing on as you search for your Denver-based job.

Word of advice:

If you’re looking for jobs in Colorado (or any place outside of your state) I would recommend setting aside money for in person interviews. You may be asked to interview in person.

Here is the list of industries in Denver (Colorado):

  • Education-We have a large number of universities for a state with only 5 million people. Employees a bazillion people in the city of Denver. Be warned-people do not leave these jobs for years. They settle in. It took me 4 months to get my job at a local university.

 

  • Technology-With organizations such as Level 3, Google, and Amazon moving large operations to the Denver/Boulder metro area, Colorado has established itself as a hub of innovation. Denver also hosts Denver Start Up Week-one of my favorite events of the year. Innovators, good beer, and great people come together to celebrate the start-up industry in Denver. This event is also free. Sign up with Hired.com if you’re looking for tech-related work.

 

  • Colorado Local-We make A LOT of amazing products locally. Here’s a brief list: White Wave Foods (Silk Soy Milk), Justin’s Peanut Butter Cups, Coors Beer, Izze, Crocs, Lara Bars, Noosa Yogurt, Made in Nature (CO/Cali), and a ton of other businesses that would take me forever to list.

 

  • Tourism-Incredibly, 77.7 Million people visited Colorado in 2015. That’s a crazy number considering that we only have around 5.5 million citizens. I think it’s important to break down the types of tourism that we’re seeing.
    • Traditional-you know, the trips that you take with family and friends with a limited amount of shenanigans.
    • Skiing and snowboarding-Because we’re known for our winter tourism industry.
    • Sports-We have professional teams for every sport. People visit the state to enjoy: baseball, hockey, soccer, football, rugby, and basketball.
    • Adventure-This is a great state for adventure related tourism.
    • Conferences-We have a ridiculous number of conferences that are being hosted in Denver.
    • Pot-Yep, we get a lot of tourists who want to indulge in the wacky weed.

 

  • Agriculture/Wine/and Craft Beer-I decided to lump these together because I feel like they’re connected. Also, many people may not be aware of the that Colorado has a wine region. Colorado region is located in the Grand Junction area (nowhere near Denver LOL!) We also we a zillion breweries and industries connected to the craft beer industry. This industry also includes the production of large events, conferences, and products. I’m going to be upfront and say that agriculture is a tricky industry to work in. Colorado is known for producing the following products: beef, bison, the Pueblo green pepper,  Palisade peaches, organic fruits, and vegetables.

 

  • Oil/Fracking/Gas-Is literally the stuff that fuels your daily life. Seriously though, we have a huge oil and gas industry in the state. Fracking has also become a hugely controversial and lucrative industry. If you’re a petrochemical engineer or just do stuff with in this industry spend some time researching the different companies out there. Don’t forget to sign up with Hired.com to check out jobs. Get that $300 bonus.

 

  • Green Energy-Because green energy has been keeping pace with the oil industry, there are a ton of jobs.  From wind turbines, solar energy, and businesses focused on other parts of the green energy industry Colorado will continue to be a leader in that field. Again, sign-up for Hired.com to check out job listings.

 

  • Construction-Seems like there is a ridiculous amount of development happening throughout the state. Denver has orange cones, redirected traffic, and crews working EVERYWHERE. Wonderfully, this city is basically a flurry of building activity everywhere.

 

  • Medical-Because Denver has a large number of hospitals and teaching facilities it seems like there are a ton of medical field related opportunities. You may also experience a high level of competition for jobs due to people moving here.

 

  • Cannabis-Incredibly, the cannabis industry is bringing in on average around $100 million dollars a month to Colorado’s budget. That said, I think it’s very important to bring up the following: the current Presidential administration is posturing to shut down this industry. The current Attorney General hates the wacky weed. As long as it’s considered illegal by the Feds-this is a huge issue hanging over the heads of people in the industry.

Related Post: Looking for Jobs in Colorado?

Finally, looking for jobs can be a stressful and overwhelming process. Having a clearer idea of the different industries in town gives the future job seeker a leg up on the competition.

 

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10 Ways to Get Around Denver Without a Car

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

For the longest time I lived a car-free lifestyle. Okay, I’m going to be honest and say that I had an ECO pass from my job and I was afraid to learn how to drive. Ahem. I’ve since learned how to drive and own a car but still love exploring Denver via all of the awesome ways there are to get around town-car free! Don’t have a car? No worries here are 10 ways to get around Denver without one.

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No Car in Denver? 

No Worries! When I was younger having no car would have been a huge problem. Fortunately, Denver has caught up with the times and there are a ton of ways to get around.

10 Ways to Get Around Denver

  • RTD (Public Bus)-I have a very long relationship with the bus system. I learned how to drive as an adult which means I took the bus for a ridiculously long time LOL! I’ve also traveled quite a bit around the US and the world and I feel that Denver has a pretty decent public transit system. While there are a couple of buses that I try to avoid like the: 15 and the 0 after rush hour, in general the buses that people will take in the Central Business District are well-maintained and easy the bus system is pretty easy to understand. The main transit hub in Denver is located at Union Station and you will find the bus terminal underneath the train station.

 

 

  • Denver Bcycle-I love this bike sharing program. If you’re on vacation and visiting Denver/Boulder the B-Cycle program is a great way to rent a bike and explore the town. Bike share stations are located throughout the city and they are adding stations all the time. Click on the following link to get information on the daily, weekly, or monthly rates. Hopefully, we will see you at the next Cruiser Ride that happens once a month from mid-May-September.

 

  • Scooter-I haven’t had a chance to check out a scooter tour but it’s on my list. Whenever I think of scooters I think of my time in Europe. There are scooter tours offered in town and if you’re moving here, there a number of shops that you could purchase your next scooter from. Share your experience with us.

 

  • On foot-I love walking around town and exploring the many different areas on foot. Check out Eat.Walk.Learn if you would like a guided tour throughout the different neighborhoods in the city of Denver. My favorite area to explore is the RINO area because of the sheer number of murals in that neighborhood. I also love exploring the city and looking for Little Free Libraries because I’m weirdly obsessed with them. I love to read! And, free books rock.  Denver has so many Little Free Libraries that it was recognized as a city of distinction. So awesome.

 

  • LYFT-I am a huge fan of LYFT and I prefer to support LYFT because so many people are getting UBER that LYFTS are always available. I’ve had a great experience being picked up pretty quickly and getting to where I would like to go in a reasonable amount of time. Never used LYFT? Get $5 towards your next ride as a new user. Click here!

 

  • Rickshaws/PediCabs-You know, those 3 wheeled contraptions with a ridiculously fit person propelling them with leg power? These are located throughout downtown Denver and are a lot of fun to use. The cost is around $2 a block plus tip your driver. You will find these outside of Pepsi Center, along the 16th Street Mall, Union Station, and other well-known points of interest.

 

  • LightRail-I love Denver’s light rail. To my big city peeps-no, it’s not like NYC’s Metro or Chicago’s L, but it’s a wonderful addition to Denver’s public transit scene. The light rail is clean, has pretty decent security, and affordable. You can get around Denver/Aurora/Arvada (soon) and it’s slated to expanded to other areas of the city in the next 5 years. It costs $5.25 for a day pass and I strongly recommend getting  a day pass because it just makes life easier. We also have the Train to the Plane that takes travelers to Denver International Airport. The cost for that is $9.

 

  • eTuks-There is a wonderful Denver-based company making electric rickshaws. Fortunately, there is a TON of business shuttling Denver people from one fun event to another so they are coexisting nicely with the pedicabs. I’ve included a link to eTuk’s Facebook page so that you can research how to rent them for your next event (or, where to find them-usually in RINO).

 

  • Segway Tours-Ok, don’t laugh, but Segways freak me out. That said, for those of you who aren’t freaked out by them, Segway tours are offered in Denver. You will have to research this one on your own LOL!

Whenever your exploring the town using these alternative forms of transportation always remember safety first. Wear a helmet, don’t act crazy, and don’t drink and ride.

Cherry Creek Bike Path


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10 Free or Ridiculously Cheap Ways to Get Fit for Summer in Denver

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

Coloradans are ridiculously interested in staying fit, fitness in general, and random physical feats that many people would prefer to leave to the pros. If you have friends who live here you will hear about a race that they plan on running, a hike they just did or are about to do, or tales of their friend who just did an ultra-marathon. Oh, wait, this sounds like my life LOL! But seriously folks-we love to get fit and fortunately for folks in Denver, there are a ridiculous number of ways to get fit for free or ridiculously cheap. Let’s talk.

The Obvious

Work out at Red Rocks Amphitheater. I try to go every other week and go up and down the stairs. You also get to see the regulars like the guy who we’re convinced was on American Ninja Warrior work out. He’s a beast.  People also do exercises up and down the stairs, run from one level to the other, and the list goes on. Cost: gas money.

Community Minded

Check out The November Project’s Denver crew. They are the nicest, fittest people that I’ve ever worked out with…at 6:15 am. Once you’re done you get encouragement and sweaty hugs from hot people. Literally and figuratively. The November Project was created in Boston and has expanded throughout the United States. If you work out with a different chapter you’re always welcome to join in the fun every Wednesday and Friday at either 5:30 am or 6:15 am. If you’re not used to high altitude workouts be prepared-they are intense. Cost: Free

I also love Meetup.com’s ridiculous assortment of fitness based meetups. There are bootcamp meetups, running, yoga, hiking, and more. I typically participate in the hiking meetups and if you don’t have access to a car, you will be able to carpool. Cost: Free

The Outdoor Afros outdoor community. As the name is alluding to, it’s an outdoor enthusiast community for people of color. I love this community because it fills a need for under-served communities that may want to experience the outdoors but would like to go outdoors in as non-intimidating a setting as possible.

Classpass

For the non-committal fitness enthusiast. I love working out but I really get bored if I’m doing the same thing over and over again (unless it’s hiking and dance). Because of this I’ve fallen in love with Classpass which gives users various levels of access to studios across the city of Denver (and other locales). You can opt to attend 3, 5, or 10 classes a month. New users click here to get $30 off your first month’s access.  I also like that you can switch off your membership if your schedule changes. I travel often so I tweak my membership from time to time to reflect that. Cost: $30-$89

Civic Center Moves

Is one of my favorite ways to workout in Denver. Basically the Civic Center Conservancy partners with: The November Project, Fold Yoga, The River, Fitness in the City, and Pearl Street Fitness to provide FREE fitness classes the end of April until the middle of October. Those classes are legit and you WILL get fit attending them regularly. Click here for more information. Cost: Free

Get Outdoors

There are a number of great bike paths for cycling enthusiasts but the following two are exceptional.

  • The Cherry Creek Bike Path-Ride from downtown to Cherry Creek Reservoir.

 

  • The US 36 Bike Path Between Westminster and Boulder. I watched this path being built waiting for the day that I could ride it. I’ve finally replaced my Cruiser and have a much lighter bike so that I can do this ride.

I love yoga. And, doing yoga outside is awesome. I’m so excited to Namaste outdoors with Yoga Rocks the Park this summer. Finally, one of my absolute favorite ways to workout is to go hiking in Chautauqua park in Boulder.There a number of different hikes that you choose from in varying levels of intensity.

Bonus:

Hip Hop Yoga!

I took a one-off hip hop yoga class at Shine Boutique on Pearl street for $5 dollars. It was awesome. We all begged for this to be a regular thing. Best line of the class “Biggie would tree the sh$t out of this song.” And, he would have.

Related Posts:

Resources:

I am obsessed with The Lonely Planet book series for travel. I’ve used these books for years and love that the books are now available digitally. Click on the image below to check them out.



 

 

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36 Hours in Denver

* In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please read my disclosure here.*

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It’s that time of year when people begin thinking about their summer vacation. If you’re like most people, you’re probably crossing your fingers and hoping that your boss won’t hassle you about your vacation request this year. One of the best places to visit this year is Denver, Colorado! Only have 36 hours in Denver? No worries, here’s a basic guide for a quick trip to Dtown.

36 Hours in Denver

6:00 pm -You’ve landed at Denver International Airport and narrowly missed a bird flying at your head (because cute little sparrows live in the airport-seriously). You make your way to the train that will take you to the main airport terminal and the train to Denver which is affectionately called “The Train to the Plane or The A-Line” It only costs $9 and you can use cash or charge to purchase your ticket. The ticket is good for 24 hours on public transit but you’ll probably opt to use LYFT for tonight’s shenanigans. Here’s the LYFT code for $5 your first ride if you’re a new user (downloading the app is super fast).

Related Post: Why I Love the Train to the Plane: Warts and All

7:00 pm-It’s around 7 pm and you’ve arrived at Union Station. It only took 37 minutes (give or take) for the train to go from the airport to downtown and you did get a glimpse of the famous devil horse “Blucifer” that warmly welcomes visitors to Denver at the airport. Leave your stuff at one of the many great hotels downtown and then prepare to wander around town.

Some Recommended Hotels and Hostels:

  • The Curtis Hotel
  • The Fish Hostel
  • The Oxford Hotel

Or, click here to check out hotels. Check Out Our Roundtrip Fares UNDER $199 at CheapOair

8:00 pm (ish) Ok, you’re hungry. The sunset is pretty legit and people are looking pretty happy for a Tuesday night. Grab a LYFT and go to either Avanti or Postino LOHI. Avanti is a great food hall with a gorgeous view of downtown Denver. It also has a single alcohol license for the entire building. Of course, local beer is on tap. You could also go to Postino which has a $20 bruschetta and bottle of wine special on Monday and Tuesday nights. Yes.

It’s almost 10:00 pm and you only have 36 Hours in Denver so it’s too early to go to sleep. Check out Williams and Graham which is about 2 or 3 blocks from Postino and about 7 blocks from Avanti. Williams and Graham is a speakeasy that actually made a list of the 50 best bars in the world. That’s legit considering how many bars there are in the world.

It’s late enough where it’s time to rest up for Wednesday’s explorations. You return via LYFT and get some rest.

Wednesday

It’s super early Wednesday and you’ve decided to work out with some Colorado peeps. Check out The November Project’s free workouts on Wednesdays. Typically they work out in Civic Center Park on Wednesdays at 5:30 am or 6:15 am but check out their Facebook page to see what they’re up to. Great people.  ***Do research exercise and altitude sickness***

8:00 am-10:00 am Not up for exercising first thing on a vacation. No worries. Have a leisurely lie in and then go to one of the following places for a great Colorado breakfast:

  • Mercantile Dining and Provision-Union Station
  • Stowaway-RINO District
  • Jelly (in the Capital Hill neighborhood)
  • Snooze-Union Station
  • Root Down-LOHI
  • Sassafras

These places are popular so you may have a bit of a wait f.y.i.

10:00 am You’ve had brunch it’s time to quickly check out Colorado’s state Capitol and the City and County Building. Don’t forget to take a picture at the actual 5280 (mile high) marker.

11:00 am (ish) You’ve already packed in a lot into your itinerary considering that you only have 36 hours in Denver. It’s time to embrace some culture. Check out the Dikeou Collection which is a really cool (free) contemporary art collection in downtown Denver that very few people know about.

12:00 pm (ish) make your way down to the Museum of Contemporary Art located near Denver’s Union Station. Designed by David Adjay-who was named the world’s most influential architect by Time magazine this year. The building is also the first building in America designed by an African-European architect. You’ll know you’re there when you see a building with a giant heart with a dagger in it. Be still my beating heart.

Take some time checking out the art and then enjoy some refreshments in the rooftop cafe (has WIFI).

Boulder

Huh? Isn’t Boulder far away? Nope. It’s less than an hour away and it would be a shame if you missed it.

1:00 pm Head to Denver’s Union Station and get a $9 round trip day pass. Take the bus that goes directly to Boulder. Check the t.v. screens in the bus terminal to figure out which “gate” the bus is departing from. Show the pass to the bus driver and then you’re on your way. **The bus going between Denver and Boulder is super clean and safe for those of you who’ve never taken the bus before.** 

2:00 pm Arrive at Boulder’s Downtown Bus Station. Walk one block to Boulder’s Pearl Street Mall. It’s an open air mall with lots of shops, restaurants, and a gorgeous view.

5:00 pm Leave Boulder for Denver and evening shenanigans

6:00 pm  (ish) Shenanigans

Ok, let’s be clear. There is a TON of fun to be had in Denver (and Colorado) regardless of time of year. This post will just gloss over all of the possibilities and then you can decide what you would like to do.

The Cruiser Ride

Make your way back to the hotel and rest up a little bit. If you’re visiting between May 15-Mid-September you can participate in the Denver Cruiser Ride. Ride the streets of Denver with 1,000 + of your favorite new friends.  You’ll have to check out a Bcycle (Denver Bcycle Bike Sharing Program) or see if there is a bike that you can borrow from your hotel. **This is a dangerous activity because you’re riding in the streets of Denver.** You’re an adult just going to put it out there.

Sports

Denver basically has a team for every sport. Let’s go through the list:

  • Denver Broncos-Football
  • Denver Nuggets-Basketball
  • Colorado Rapids-Soccer. F.Y.I. Dick’s Sporting Goods Field where they play is far from Downtown Denver.
  • Colorado Avalanche-Hockey
  • Colorado Rockies-Baseball.
  • Denver Barbarians-Rugby (Boulder is the headquarters for U.S. Rugby)

Breweries

Do you feel like keeping things low-key and having a beer while wandering around a cool neighborhood? Check out the RINO neighborhood and one of the following breweries:

  • Great Divide Brewing CO.
  • Epic Brewing CO.
  • Spanglang

There’s more and I will add to the list later.

Theater

Love the theater? Check out what’s being performed at the Denver Center for Performing Arts. One of my favorite places in Denver. I’ve seen the following shows there:

  • The Color Purple
  • Wicked
  • The Book of Mormon
  • The Lion King

and more!

Arts

Feel like checking out more art? Go to the Santa Fe Art District and wander up and down the street. I do prefer going to Santa Fe on the 1sr Friday of each month when they have musicians, food trucks, etc.

The Denver Art Museum has some amazing art and next to it is the Clyfford Still museum. Both typically close at 5:00 but occasionally have special events.

Restaurants

Just feel like eating after a day of checking out all of the things? Here are some restaurant suggestions:

  • Linger
  • there (yes, that’s the name)
  • Stueben’s
  • Work and Class
  • Uncle
  • Lena

Most vegetarians/vegans will have a couple of options on the menu (except Work and Class-that’s for meat lovers). Check the menu online to make sure they have stuff that you would like to eat.

36 Hours In Denver-Logistics

They will fly by. You’ll have a great time. Seriously. Some basic logistics

  • Water Bottle-Stay hydrated. We don’t carry them around for fun. It’s because it’s so dry here.
  • Read up on Altitude Sickness-EVERYONE regardless of your health. Talk to your doctor about any concerns that you may have. 
  • Bring layers. We have weird weather. Just saying.
  • Good walking shoes
  • Comfortable backpack
  • We don’t judge people (really ) for not dressing up. But, bring one cute outfit because-why not?
  • An open mindset. People are really friendly here. Don’t get weird if people start talking to you randomly. Obviously be mindful of your belongings and safety but that would be in any city. I’ve lived out East and I know it freaks people out. But, we don’t want anything-usually we’re just being friendly.
  • Don’t wait until the last minute to take the Plane to the Train back to the airport. It’s great but sometimes has…issues…

4:30 am (ish) Thursday

Time to go home!  Hope this was helpful and we are looking forward to having you visit our wonderful city and state. Welcome!