What Denver Dads Really Want for Father's Day

The 1970s: both the pinnacle and nadir of tie culture.
The 1970s: both the pinnacle and nadir of tie culture.
Geoff Parsons at Flickr

It’s mid-June, which means it's time to think about a lot of things: upcoming vacations, the Pride parade and...oh, yeah, I gotta get something for my dad. This used to be a lot easier, back when you could make a ceramic ashtray or a shoe-polishing kit in wood shop. These days, you're stuck buying a gift...and you have absolutely no idea what your dad wants.

We’re here for you. Truth is, dads throughout history have just been humoring us. They don’t want a tie. They don’t want breakfast in bed. They’re not big on brunch in general. So what do they want? Here are ten gifts that will surprise your dad — you know, in a good way — on Father's Day.

It's like South Park, only less funny.EXPAND
It's like South Park, only less funny.
Kris Gabbard at Flickr

10. A “Get Out of Casa Bonita Free” Card
Odds are a Denver dad will have to go to Casa Bonita at some point, sometimes even for a good reason (the sopaipillas or helping your kid win enough tickets for a small plastic slinky). But there are also lots of reasons that your average dad would rather be…well, anywhere else. So think of all those coupon-based gifts dads always seem to appreciate — car washes, free hugs, whatever your cheap-ass heart might think up. Now add to them a  blameless opportunity to back out of bad enchiladas and the lingering scent of chlorine and gorilla suits. A "Get Out of Casa Bonita Free" card? Priceless.

It's still one, two, three strikes you're out...but it's nicer when you can see the strike zone.
It's still one, two, three strikes you're out...but it's nicer when you can see the strike zone.
Ken Lund at Flickr

9. Good Seats at a Rockies Game
“Good seats” being the operative term here. When taking their kid(s) to a Rockies game, many dads had to opt for the Rockpile just to save some funds for all the Dippin’ Dots and cotton candy and peanuts and Cracker Jack and strawberries-and-cheesecake-on-a-sticks. But now that you’re older and your attention span is less based on caloric intake, you can spring for a couple of tickets down the first- or third-base line — where your dad can maybe even catch that errant foul ball.

See, sweetheart, if you turn the dial this way, I will lose my shit.EXPAND
See, sweetheart, if you turn the dial this way, I will lose my shit.
starmanseries at Flickr

8. Complete Control of the Thermostat
Not all of us have the same preference as to ambient temperature in a room. Some of us run hot, some run cold, and some just seem to be permanently uncomfortable. But dads are the great adjudicators of the thermostats —mostly in terms of yelling “Who turned the temperature down?” and “This house isn’t made of money, you know!” and “If you want it colder in the house this summer, I hear McDonald's is hiring.” So for one day — one precious day— tell Dad that he can regulate the temperature in the house without hearing any back talk from you. It’ll be a banner day of either sweltering indoor conditions…or complete hypocrisy. Either way, it’ll be memorable.

Best to buy beer two at a time.EXPAND
Best to buy beer two at a time.
N i c o l a at Flickr

7. Booze…but Thoughtful Booze
Okay, it’s something of a standby, but unless your dad is a teetotaler, there’s a good chance he likes to imbibe now and again. Giving him the chance to do just that is a great idea — and with the options that Denver has to offer, he can do it in a brand-new way. If he’s a traditionalist, spend the day at the Coors tour. Or take him out and expand his beer horizons at any of the local breweries. Or let him experiment with sour beer at the new Goed Zuur, at 2801 Welton Street. Beer not his thing? Head to Pint’s Pub, which has the widest selection of single-malt Scotch in the Mile High. And wings, don’t forget the wings. Dads love wings.

I'll have the biscuits and gravy with a rocking chair on the side.
I'll have the biscuits and gravy with a rocking chair on the side.
Mike Mozart at Flickr

6. That Thing He Wants but Isn’t Supposed to Have
Yes, this is pretty vague, but every dad has a semi-guilty fantasy he'd love to indulge, just for today. For my dad, it’s pork chops at Cracker Barrel: He’s mostly a vegetarian these days, for health reasons, but give him half a chance at some fried chops with a side of cinnamon apples, and he’ll be in the car before you can finish your sentence. (You know it’s true, Pop.) Every dad has something, and it’s not always a food destination. Personally, all I want to do is head out to a comic-book store or the Denver Comic Con, or a nerd movie with my two girls. The recipe for thoughtfulness is insight plus time, and that's every dad’s favorite dish.

Keep reading for more things to do for your dad.



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