Tuesday 09 April, 2013

6 Things You Never Knew About Denver

Denver is a truly interesting place. A diverse and constantly growing hub of technology and business for the West, it’s projected to become an even bigger force on the national scene in the coming years. Here are some interesting facts about the Mile High City that most folks don’t know.

Weather Weirdness

First, let’s start with the weather. Denver has more days of sunshine than Miami or San Diego and its drier than Phoenix, Arizona. Locals claim it has 300 days of sunshine per year, but it’s actually more like 250 depending on the year in question (they’re counting partly cloudy days). Although it snows heavily in winter, temperatures are mild compared to any Midwestern or New England city.

Colfax – The Longest Street in America

Colfax Avenue, a major east-west artery in the middle of the city, is the longest street in the United States, stretching 26 miles from Golden in the west to Strasburg in the east. The miners called it the Golden Road and also Grand Avenue until it was officially named after Schuyler Colfax, vice president under Ulysses S. Grant. Playboy Magazine amended its famous designation, calling it ‘the longest, wickedest street in America,’ but if you’ve ever been there, you know that there’s just one bad stretch east of Broadway.

Denver Said ‘No’ to the Olympics

In 1970, Denver was selected to host the 1976 Winter Olympics. The event was set to coincide with Colorado’s centennial celebration. But unfortunately, Denver residents didn’t want to pay the high costs of hosting the event. They struck down the ballot initiative that would have allocated public funds to pay for it and Denver went down in history as the only city ever to turn down the Olympics.

The Fast Casual Restaurant Industry

Denver pioneered the ‘fast casual restaurant,’ a happy medium between fast food and regular restaurants. The list of fast casual eateries founded in Denver includes Chipotle Mexican Grill, Quizno’s Subs, Smashburger, Qdoba Mexican Grill, Good Times Burgers & Frozen Custard, and Noodles & Company. In addition to fast casual, Denver has a disproportionately high number of restaurants compared to other cities.

Strange Brew

Speaking of food and drink, Denver brews more beer than any other city. There are more than 80 brewpubs, 18 microbreweries, and the Coors brewery in Golden. This has earned Denver the nickname ‘the Napa Valley of beer.’ Whenever you visit a bar in Denver, don’t be surprised if you find out the beer is brewed there.

Near the Mountains, Not in Them

Finally, it’s often believed that Denver is ‘in’ the Rocky Mountains, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Denver is actually located in the high plains near the mountains and is in fact one of North America’s flattest cities. It’s about a thirty minute drive west before you start climbing. However, the mountains do provide pretty scenery from anywhere in the city, as well as always telling you which direction is west.

Bob Steele

Bob Steele is an entrepreneur, software developer, marketer, and author living in the Denver metropolitan area. He’s an avid outdoorsman who loves skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and just plain having fun. His interests include games, space, technology, physics, cooking (well eating actually), economics, business, internationalism, and team sports. With over thirty years of professional consulting experience, Bob has been exposed to many diverse business models and has gained a sensible approach to life. Bob’s company, WaveCentric is focused on commerce, marketing, and entertainment related products.

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