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Sunday, September 4, 2016

Colorado Vacation - Part 1: Denver

Hello all, and happy September! And can you believe it's already Labor Day weekend? It's so nice to have a few days off to enjoy with family, friends, or whatever it may be. We had a nice Friday night going out for pizza with Trent's aunt and uncle, then coming back here and all getting together out back having a fire and some laughs well into the night. We're enjoying the milder, more fall-like weather we're having, though it's supposed to get back up into the eighties and nineties after the weekend.

Today Trent and I are cleaning around the house and trying to be productive. I thought I would take a little break though, and share the first leg of our Colorado trip!


We had such an awesome time in Colorado, and it the first time visiting the state for both of us. We drove from Illinois, so the drive was a little long, but we definitely made the most of the time we had there.

We stayed in Denver for the first two nights. Our hotel was right downtown, which was perfect because we were within walking distance of the 16th Street Mall and Coors Field, the two places we spent the most time at while in the city.


The 16th Street Mall was full of shops, restaurants, and bars, and our hotel, The Magnolia, was on 17th Street, so we didn't have to walk far. Our first night in Denver, we ate at Rock Bottom Brewery and were not disappointed.


We just got drinks and appetizers, but the nachos we got were huge, and it all definitely filled us up!

The next day, we went to a Rockies / Cubs game at Coors Field, but not before stopping at Colorado's oldest Brewpub, Wynkoop Brewing Company.


It did have a very old school vibe, with tons of character. Trent and I each had a drink before walking down to the baseball stadium.



We also walked through Denver's Union Station. It's a lot more than just a train station - there's restaurants, coffee shops, and stores all inside, so you will never go hungry or thirsty while you're waiting for your ride.



We headed down to Coors Field to watch our Cubbies play. The stadium is huge and pretty cool inside. Very different from Wrigley - a lot newer, and more outside areas to hang out at.



You also can't beat the mountain view! Especially from the purple row of Mile High seats. We had to try those out just to say we sat there. Our seats were a little further down from those, but still pretty high up.



We were hoping for cooler weather while in Colorado, but the day of the baseball game in Denver, it was HOT. It was a Sunday day-game, and our seats were directly in the sun. I was sweating my butt off! 

We were also a little disappointed, because not only did the Cubs lose, but they lost big that day! Oh well, maybe one day we'll get to see them play some awesome baseball!


While in Denver, we also had to check out the Big Blue Bear statue at the convention center. We walked there on our way back to the hotel. Then we stopped for some cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory on 16th St...Because yum, who can pass that up?


We thought Denver was a pretty cool city. Just too bad the Cubs game was so disappointing! 

Before heading down to the Colorado Springs area the next day, we made a pit stop about 20 miles west of Denver at the Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre.


If you are ever visiting the Denver area, I definitely feel like it's a must-see to check out at least once. It was really cool and surreal to actually be there after seeing bands perform there on TV, and hearing about so many concerts taking place there.


The stage and amphitheater is built into the giant natural rock formations, and the scenery from the top is gorgeous. It's free to visit during the day, and people actually use it as a workout space. They run up and down the stairs and do yoga and pilates on them! Meanwhile, there are people working on the stage setting up for the concert that's about to take place that night.


We walked down all of the stairs to check out the little museum/ shop at the bottom. Then had to walk all the way up again. It was much more walking than I ever thought, and gave us a workout, for sure!

Just outside of Red Rocks, there's a lookout point that Trent and I checked out, where there are really expansive views of the hills and valleys in the area.


And we saw even more of the red rock formations that jut out of the hills.


That was only the beginning of the mountains and scenery we saw, though! Next up: Manitou Springs!  Where we visited Garden of the Gods, Seven Falls, Pike's Peak, and the Manitou Cliff Dwellings. Stay tuned. :)

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