Downtown Denver Dining
Denver, Colorado: Venue for the 45th NCSM Annual Conference
Located in the heart of downtown, the Denver Downtown Hyatt Regency and the Downtown Hilton Garden Inn are the setting for the 2013 NCSM Denver Annual Conference. They are adjacent to the Colorado Convention Center and one block from the 16th Street pedestrian mall's shopping, dining, and nightlife. They are also a quarter-mile from the United States Mint and the Colorado Capitol Building.
The "Mile High City"
Denver is often referred to as the "Mile High City." You can locate the exact elevation of 5,280 feet (1 mile) above sea level at the round brass cap embedded in the western entrance stairs of the State Capitol. It is one of the few cities in history that was not built on a road, railroad, lake, navigable river or body of water when it was founded. It just happened to be where the first few flakes of gold were found in 1858. Despite being warned by Indians not to build in this location, early settlers did not listen. The "Pikes Peak or Bust!" gold rush was in full force. Local boosters named the frontier mining camp "Denver" after Kansas Territorial Governor James Denver in hopes of gaining political favor. Unfortunately, Denver had retired by the time they named the town. There were originally three separate towns, with three separate names, where Denver now stands. In 1859, the other names were dropped in return for a barrel of whiskey to be shared by all. The first permanent structure in Denver was a saloon. In its first few years, Denver was destroyed twice, once by fire and once by flood.
Denver locals wake up to more than 300 days of sunshine a year. That's more annual hours of sun than Miami and San Diego. Metro Denver brews more beer than any other city in the country, with many hand-crafted beers made daily. It is also known as one of only two cities in America with eight professional sports teams.
Since its Wild West beginnings, Denver has attracted all kinds of people. The rich ethnic history and diverse cultural heritage of the city are celebrated with a number of events throughout the year. The historically rich African-American Five Points neighborhood is home to the Black American West Museum, while the Museo de las Americas hosts some of the world's top contemporary artists from Latin America. A trip to the Mile High City will find no shortage of cultural activity. Denver residents have a laid-back, welcoming nature. A vibrant nightlife can be found in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.
Places to Go and Things to Do
Several museums and art venues can be explored throughout the city including Argo Gold Mine & Mill, Boulder History Museum, B's Ballpark Museum, Cherokee Ranch and Castle Foundation, Denver Firefighters Museum, Downtown Aquarium, Golden History Museums, and the Western Museum of Mining & Industry.
The Molly Brown House Museum is a fancy antique-filled Victorian house that was the home of Molly Brown, a famous survivor of the Titanic. The Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art displays art from 1880 to 1980, with over 3,300 examples of Arts & Crafts, Art Nouveau, Glasgow Style, Wiener Werkstatte, De Stijl, Bauhaus, Art Deco, Modern, and Pop Art. A retrospective of Colorado's distinguished painter, Vance Kirkland (1904-1981), and over 600 works of other modernist Colorado artists are also on view. The Denver Art Museum is a private, non-profit, educational resource for Colorado. The 356,000-square-foot museum complex includes collection gallery space, three temporary exhibition venues, and the Lewis I. Sharp Auditorium. Popular collections include Native Arts, Modern & Contemporary Art and Western American Art. The museum has an internationally recognized family-friendly environment, and has received critical acclaim for encouraging art appreciation through interactive activities. The Denver Center for the Performing Arts is an exhilarating mix of Broadway shows, professional theatre, backstage tours, acting instruction and breathtaking facilities. They offer classics, revivals and world premieres as well as musical touring shows and cabaret productions.
The Wings Over The Rockies Air and Space Museum is located within the former Hangar 1 (Building 401) on land that was part of Lowry Air Force Base. The museum building is one of three remaining historic hangars from the base. The museum hangar houses artifacts spanning the aeronautic and aerospace history of Colorado and the United States. Visitors can watch a short film narrated by Harrison Ford in the museum's theater before venturing into the collection. Over 40 military and civilian aircraft occupy the hangar, with rare examples including the Douglas B-18A Bolo, North American Rockwell B-1A Lancer, Ball-Bartoe JW-1 Jetwing and Republic RF-84K Thunderflash. Miners Alley Playhouse and Boulder's Dinner Theatre are great theatre venues. Denver's best kept secret is the Denver Transportation Museum houses a personal collection of self made industrial Giant, J.D. Forney. Mr Forney's companies, based out of Ft. Collins, manufactured everything from instant soldering irons to airplanes, welders to printed goods. The car collection rivals is counted as one of the top five car collections in the country. The collection of railroad equipment, farm equipment, horse drawn vehicles, bicycles, and antique clothing is notable.
There are several tours and locations to explore include the Boulder Walking Tours, Butterfly Pavilion, Culinary Connectors, Fort Collins Ghost Tour, and the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park.
Larimer Square is part of the first downtown area of Denver that has been restored as a trendy shopping area. Mount Evans Scenic Byway is a high-altitude scenic drive that climbs more than 7,000 feet in just 28 miles, reaching an altitude of 14,264 feet. Coors Field is a modern stadium with an old-fashioned feel and is one of the National League's first new parks built exclusively for baseball since 1962. The Denver Botanic Gardens span more than 23 acres, this urban garden features more than 15,000 species from around the world. The Cherry Creek Bike Ride parallels Cherry Creek for 15 miles. The Denver Zoo is home to more than 4000 animals representing over 700 species. The Tropical Discovery is a large indoor rainforest featuring both marine and freshwater aquariums, the world's largest komodo dragon exhibit, and Discovery Center. The Predator Ridge is a naturalistic exhibit featuring 14 African species of birds, mammals, and reptiles. One can actually observe the behavior between lions and hyenas and listen as they "talk" to each other, quite a moving experience. Denver B-cycle is open until midnight and annual users enjoy complimentary access in Boulder with Boulder B-cycle. There are 53 stations and 530 bikes to rent. Balistreri Vineyards boasts a wonderful winery experience.
The Spa at the Brown Palace includes an artesian well with natural spring water that serves as the main ingredient. Experience hydrotherapy tubs, massage and skin treatment rooms, separate men's and women's locker rooms with relaxation areas, showers, steam rooms, and a nail and hair salon.
Facts and highlights are from www.denver.org/metro