Monday, August 18, 2014

Where to take a date in Pueblo

  A couple of weeks ago, some friends and I were discussing where to take someone for a day while visiting Pueblo.  There are a couple of really unique things about this area of the state, and we wanted the list to highlight all the original things that make P-town stand out.   Hot and sunny Pueblo receives around 300 days of sunshine a year, so it's no surprise that Oregon natives, and brothers Mike and Dave Hartkop came here to open a coffee shop that uses solar power to roast coffee.  Solar Roast Coffee is my favorite local shop, so after you pick up your latte, be sure to walk the ARTery, a huge collection of professionally painted murals in the alleyways Downtown. Next you can head over to the riverwalk and do some shopping on  Historic Union Ave.  At the corner of Union and B. St. is a fabulous bakery, Hopscotch, where you can grab a quick treat and head down B. St. to view the Union Depot and do some shopping at the Robot Exchange, my favorite vintage clothing store.  
   In addition to its abundant sunshine, Pueblo is famous for its green chile.  The chiles are grown locally, fire roasted, and then added to about every dish you can imagine.  In addition to Mexican food, local restaurants serve them on pizza, sandwiches, pastas, and desserts.  If you order "chili fries," you are probably going to get fries smothered in cheese and green chile sauce.  One of the most popular, and my personal favorite is something called the Slopper.  It's literally a bun-less cheeseburger, smothered in green chile.  It's highly debated on who has the best Slopper in town, but I prefer Gray's Coors Tavern, and while you are there, you can order a schooner of beer (or two!)  
  If you want to cool down you can head to the Nature and Raptor Center and go tubing in the river (life jackets are a must, the Arkansas River is serious business).  Or you can walk/bike the many miles of trails that connect to downtown.  Located nearby is the Pueblo Reservoir, and for the price of a parking pass ($7) you can swim at Rock Canyon swim beach, walk trails, rent a boat, or go camping.  Did I mention it's hot and sunny? Wear sunscreen!
   One of the best activities on summer evenings is to head out to the county and see a double feature at the Mesa Drive-In.  The theater opened in 1951 and is only of 7 drive-in theaters left in Colorado.  The films don't start until the sun goes down, so dress the kiddos in pjs and bring some blankets.  Even with all our sunshine, it cools down quickly in the evening.  Mesa Drive-In is super affordable (8.50 per adult, and kids under 12 FREE), and has a full concession menu that includes things like cheeseburgers, ice cream cones, and FUNNEL CAKES!
Outfit details:
Navy dot hair scarf: Estate Sale
1950s navy pinstripe dress (matching bolero not pictured): Buffalo Exchange, South Broadway, Denver, CO
1940s white leather sailor fish belt: Everyday People, Minneapolis, MN
Navy shoes: Poetic Licence
Assorted patriotic Bakelite: Ebay & thrifted
Pueblo is being added to a national list of Hidden Gems
 in an effort to make traveling easier, cheaper and more affordable. There is a rental car company called RelayRides that allows those with an underutilized car to rent it out to someone looking for a car. Not only does this mean there's less cars being added to the road (yay for the environment), but also means that both the parties win because the owner makes money off a car they already own. The renter typically saves around 40% compared to using a corporate car rental counterpart. This Pinterest places board will be used as a resource for our community to make finding places while traveling that much easier!
Check out the board for other Hidden Gems in your neck of the woods.

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