Monday, January 26, 2015

Denver Day Trip #4 – $2 Bloody Mary’s, Take an Art Class, Go Bowling, and Watch a Movie

Does brunch, an art class, crafting, and a movie sound like a busy day? It is but you will find yourself enjoying every minute of this South (-ish) Broadway agenda.  The official classification of South Broadway is anything south of Alameda, but this excursion is just north of Alameda, in the Baker neighborhood.

The Hornet - 10 am

76 Broadway, (SE Corner of 1st & Broadway), Denver, CO 80203
(303) 777-7676

The Hornet has amazing comfort food that is good any time of day and any day of the week. However on the weekend for brunch, they have a fun $2 ‘make your own Bloody Mary’ bar. Granted, you will inevitably end up making several different Mary’s, but more than likely you’ll enjoy each one. For brunch, try the homemade Pop-Tart, Breakfast Tacos, or the classic Broadway Breakfast.


The Art Students League of Denver - 11 am

200 Grant Street, Denver, Colorado 80203
The Art Students League of Denver (ASLD) opened its doors in 1987 starting with 100 students and now growing to over 800 students a month.  ASLD teaches a variety of classes and workshops in several different disciplines including: ceramics, sculpture, painting, drawing, printmaking, and jewelry making. Classes are offered in various skill levels from beginner to advanced skill sets. You can either sign up for an ongoing class, drop-in for figure drawing, or attend one of their Demo and Dialogue events.

Lowbrow – 2pm

250 Broadway, Denver, CO 80203
(303) 722-1797
Now that you have picked up some technical artistic skills at ASLD, time to visit some other forms of art. By that I mean it’s time to find some really cool coloring books, stickers, Munny dolls, workshop, and gallery. The Denver shop also has monthly workshops ranging from screen printing to nail art and every month it’s different. While you are there, make sure to check out the gallery walls at the back half of the shop, which usually rotates art every month or so.

Punch Bowl Social – 3pm

65 Broadway, Denver, CO 80203
(303) 765-2695
At this point you have probably worked up an appetite and ready for a snack. Not to worry, it’s happy hour! If you are looking to have a snack and kill a little time, I suggest heading over to Punch Bowl Social (PBS). Their happy hour is from 3-6pm and has both food and drink specials. The deviled eggs and the Paper Tiger punch may just hit the spot. However, if you are hungry for more, try the Cast Iron Burger or Cauliflower Nachos. Once you have had your fill, explore PBS to find bowling, shuffle board, darts, Ping-Pong, and classic arcade games.

 The Mayan Theater – 4 (or 7pm)  

110 Broadway, Denver, CO 80203
(303) 744-6799
Most of the movies at the Mayan Theater start around 4 or 7 pm, give or take 15 minutes, however view their website for the most up-to-date movie time. Most of the films, at this 1930s Art Deco theater, are independent or foreign release.  The Mayan Revival movie house only has three screens – One large and two smaller screens, so it is a good idea to get tickets ahead of time for popular releases. Popcorn, pretzels, candy, and beer can usually be found at the concession stand.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Best Denver Deals Help Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

Every year when December 31st rolls around, we reflect on the passing year and think about what we want for the new year. As we are nearing the end of January, many of us are starting to see some of our goals start to wane. While each person has specific goals that they want to achieve, statistically speaking there are some goals that seem to pop up each year. According to Statistic Brain  the top three resolutions include: Lose Weight, Get Organized, and Spend Less/ Save More. In an effort to keep you on track to achieve your goals, here are some methods and deals to continue to make 2015 a great year.

Lose Weight 

Weight loss is a goal that pops up every single year and almost always in the top spot. We tend to give our future selves more self control credit than ourselves of last year. The reality is that we can help ourselves out a bit by making a more specific goal. For example: Join a new weekly exercise group, lose 5 lb in one month, or make an appointment with a nutrition coach. The key to success with this goal is to create a specific actionable task and find a way to make yourself accountable. Here are a few links to deals that will help you with losing weight. 

Dance Class for Adults  - Ever want to learn how to pop n' lock or pick up a few more moves than your basic Zumba?

Nutritional Counseling with a Registered Dietitian - Meeting with a nutritionist can give you both guidance and accountability.

Bet on Yourself!  Websites like Diet Bet, allow you to place a bet on yourself. If you hit your goal, you split the pot between you and the other people in your who have also hit their goal. It's super motivating and fun!

Get Organized

Clear the clutter! Through the run-of-the-mill some how we always manage to get more stuff - sometimes intentionally sometimes not. In the long run being organized saves you time and money, by not having to look for things and not accidentally re-buying something that you already have. The best way to get organized is to create a plan. Pick a couple of areas that you want to focus on and knock those out first. Here are some great checklists from Real Simple to get you started -  

Professional Organization Help  - For those you would like to get guidance, check out this Groupon for professional home organization.

Spend Less/ Save More 

In my opinion, the first step to spending less and saving more, comes down to knowing where your money is going in the first place. I suggest using one of the free services such as I use Mint and it links directly to my accounts and tells me exactly where my money is going. This app also can set financial goals and budgets. 

Financial Counseling Deals  - If you want to dive in deeper, I suggest setting up an appointment with a financial counselor or take a class aimed at your specific financial goal. This link is to Groupon, however many financial firms offer a free initial consultation to see what the best path for you would be.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Mayan Theater - Take in a Piece of Denver History and a Movie Too!

The Mayan Theater on South Broadway has been a Denver landmark for me as long as I can remember and it is probably one of the more sought out historical landmarks of the area.The timeless Mayan prince starring down on pedestrians, cars and even at one point, trolleys has seen a lot since 1930. The Mayan has been around 80+ years, but it's steadfastness wasn't always so secure as it is today. In 1984 the theatre had been declared a blight to the neighborhood and was slated to be torn down. Luckily a group called, 'Friends of the Mayan', petitioned to have the theatre saved and have it granted historical status. With close to 2 million in renovations the theater changed hands a few more times, eventually becoming part of the Landmark family of theaters. Which personally I am grateful for, due to The Landmark's carefully curated selection of films. The Mayan is one of a few theaters left in the country in the Art Deco Mayan Revival Style. The interior of the theater continues the theme.

The Mayan Theater only has three screens; one large one downstairs and two smaller theaters upstairs. The snack bar, in addition to popcorn and other movie snake fare, also has beer and wine that you can take into the theater. The programming at the Theater is almost exclusively independent and foreign titles. This is actually a great reason to visit, because you get to watch unique films in a one-of-a-kind theater.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

For Love of Annie's Cafe - Denver Favorite

Hanging out in the lobby of Annie's Cafe,  I briefly wait for the hostess to say goodbye to a few regulars. I see a display case showing candy favorites from my childhood - Saltwater taffy, chocolate malt balls and gummy worms. The hostess has wrapped up with her customers and  is now leading me and my friends back to a wooden slat booth, reminiscent of a park bench (sounds uncomfortable, but really isn't). The decor is whimsical and retro with classic metal lunch boxes stringed across the restaurant and the TVs are playing The Wizard of OZ.

Sitting with the likes of Knight Rider and Pac Man, I can't help but wonder why more people don't know about the place. By people, I mean people that I know. Specifically, I was at The Bluebird Theater (a block away) and I mentioned that I wanted to go to Annie's, to a group of friends, for some green chili fries and they had no idea... this annoys me slightly, but only to the point I take my unsuspecting friend for an amazing spiked milkshake. I am a Denver native, but have only learned of this local treasure a couple of years ago and they have been in business since 1981. This amazes me because the service, food and atmosphere are great! Annie's is a diner, specializing in REALLY good comfort dishes and spins on the classics. For example, they have all the traditional omelettes, but then they also have a  Mac n' Cheese Omelette.

Originally drawn in by promises of pie, I have since discovered so much more than pie. Some of my favorites include:

  •  The House Green Chile - I like smothered on fries with cheese OR as a side with the house made chips. You can get the chips smothered, but I like them crunchy. 
  • The Hopscotch - Delicious on a cold day... it's hard to go wrong with hot chocolate and butterscotch schnapps.
  • Fried Pickes - Yummmmm!
  • Pie - Pick any one; they are all delicious. 
The Deal - Annie's Cafe and Bar has Happy Hour every day from 3-6 and has nightly food specials Wednesday - Sunday 

Annie's Cafe and Bar
3100 E. Colfax ave
M-F 7am-10pm, Sat 8am-10pm, Sun 8am - 8pm 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Lose Twice as Much Weight - Fitness Trackers Keep you on Track

I'm a big fan of information. The more informed that I have, the better able I am to make informed decisions. The same is true for diet and exercise. In fact if you are trying to lose weight, tracking what you eat can double the amount of weight that you lose. Kaiser put on a 20 week study of both men and women; 1,600+ participants. The entire group was on a reduced calorie diet, however some people tracked what they ate while others did not. The surprise result of the study was that the people who tracked what they ate lost twice as much as those who didn't keep track of what they ate. Read more about this study here.

Successful programs such as Weight Watchers are founded on the principle of tracking. The good news is that you don't need to join a program with monthly membership dues to take full advantage of  the benefits of tracking. Personally I have journaled, tracked points, and worn a pedometer, but my favorite trackers thus far have been the app plus wearable tracker combo. The major players in this category are Fitbit, Jawbone UP, and Nike Fuel. I have not used Fitbit or Fuel, but I can speak to the Jawbone UP.

The Jawbone Up system is the tracker system that I have been using the past two years. It does a lot of things, but the short version is that it has the ability to track both calories expended through activity, calories eaten, and your sleep cycle. My favorite feature is that you can set it to vibrate if you have been idle for certain periods of time. Also you can give it a window for when you want to wake up. Then when you are in a lighter sleep cycle it vibrates to wake you up.

Why am I posting this on The Denver Deal? Because I use my UP every day and I paid around $130 for mine. Browsing the deals today, I came accross the exact version that I use and it's on sale through Groupon for $49.99 ...what! The next lowest cost I could find for this is at Best Buy for $65.

Groupon - Jawbone UP $49.99

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Phish Fans - Free Live Streaming Event! 11/2/14 - 1up Colfax

Phish Fans - Free Live Streaming Viewing Party! 11/2/14

Phish will be playing the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on November 2nd. Can't make it to Vegas? Not to worry, 1 Up Colfax is having a FREE viewing party starting at 8:30pm, Sunday 11/2. The live stream event will be shown on 1up's big screen. Invite your Phish friends, play some games and have a good time! 

The 1up - Colfax
717 East Colfax Avenue
Denver, CO, 80203