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  • Best Oscar-night performance by a Coloradan

    Trey Parker

    There's no use taking Academy Awards night too seriously -- particularly if you're South Park co-creator Trey Parker, late of Conifer, and you've been unexpectedly nominated for a statuette in the Best Original Song category. Parker's satirical anthem "Blame Canada" (from South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut) didn't win the Oscar. But Parker, who can never resist popping Hollywood on… More >>
  • Best goodwill ambassador -- abroad

    Charlie Papazian

    You've got to wonder: How many arguments have been settled over a beer or two? That must have gone through Boulder homebrew guru and Association of Brewers president Charlie Papazian's head when he organized a brewers' delegation to China last November to compare notes with Chinese counterparts, review the history of Chinese brewing and discuss such weighty issues as brewing… More >>
  • Best donation for victims of the June fires

    Grateful Dead tapes

    Hey, man does not leave by bread, and bedroom, alone. When the Hi Meadow and Bobcat fires displaced dozens of families, Coloradans rushed to donate cash and compassion. But perhaps the most appreciated donation came from Colorado Springs resident Randy Barnes, who volunteered to record old Grateful Dead tapes for a man who'd lost his collection when his house in… More >>
  • Best source of news about the June fires

    www.pinecam.com

    Where there's smoke, there's ire, and in the early days of the fires, residents complained that they weren't getting enough specifics from the local media. But that's because they hadn't tuned into www.pinecam.com, the Web site belonging to Wayne Harrison, an assignment editor for Channel 7. Usually, Harrison's six-year-old site is devoted to folksy chats about living in the mountains.… More >>
  • Best officer to answer your 911 call

    Sergeant Terry Reibeling, Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office

    SWAT officer Terry Reibeling is the kind of big, tough professional whom other cops like to have around when the chips are down, and he made two heads-up arrests last year that deserve special recognition. Less than a month after the Columbine murders, he pursued a suspicious vehicle that was lurking outside a suburban mosque, uncovered an arsenal of guns… More >>
  • Best new name for Colorado's high-tech hub

    Mile High-Tech

    In late June, the Metro Denver Network officially unveiled its pricey new slogan design to lure high-tech industries to the Front Range. But somehow, we just don't think "Convergence Corridor: Technology With Altitude" is going to do the job. Fortunately, there's a perfectly good name available -- one with proven marketability -- that Denver's about to dump on the scrap… More >>
  • Best virtual tour

    www.archives.state.co.us/govs/mansion/index.htm

    We paid for the fixup, so why wait in line to see the chief executive's crib when it's now online? There's nary a Big Mac wrapper in sight among the still photos of the Governor's Mansion offered at www.archives.state.co.us/govs/mansion/index.htm, but we do get a glimpse of a guest suite powder room (tub in background, commode not pictured). Almost like being… More >>
  • Best move by Mayor Wellington Webb

    Homeless shelter for women and families

    Wellington Webb's concerned about the legacy that his three terms as Denver mayor will leave for the city, and for much of this year, it looked like that legacy would focus on big buildings and very clean streets. As a result, many of Denver's homeless -- and their advocates -- felt like they were given the bum's rush. In June,… More >>
  • Best-earned retirement

    Senator Dorothy Rupert

    She may be a Boulder liberal, but Dorothy Rupert, a onetime high school teacher, has managed to get some things done during her fourteen years in Colorado's Republican-dominated state legislature -- nine in the House and five in the Senate. Rupert has worked tirelessly for civil rights for minorities, women and homosexuals, as well as for the well-being of Colorado's… More >>
  • Best-dressed legislator

    Senator Ken Chlouber

    One day Ken Chlouber's dressed in a red, white and blue flag-patterned biker shirt with the sleeves cut off, helping Governor Bill Owens's skinny, citified son sit up on the back of a mule to promote Fairplay's Burro Days; the next he's sporting $1,000 lizard-hide cowboy boots and a $190 studded shirt from Billy Martin ("that drugstore-cowboy store, for the… More >>
  • Best political resurrection

    Roy Romer

    He could have settled into his golden years like everyone else, content to retire in his nice, Spanish-tiled mansion on the 7th Avenue Parkway, collect Social Security and wait for visits from the grandkids, but not the man from Holly. No, 71-year-old former Colorado governor Roy "Roamin'" Romer just couldn't let it go. In early June, Romer quit his post… More >>
  • Best performance by a Hollywood actor playing a onetime Coloradan

    Chad Lowe

    When Chad Lowe, Rob's little brother, left the set of Take Me Home: The John Denver Story, he must have thanked God he wasn't a country boy. Certainly the TV movie, which aired in April, had this state cringing over the golly-gee look at our most saccharine adopted son, Henry Deutschendorf, who single-handedly inspired the '70s rush to the Rockies.… More >>
  • Best pictorial resurrection

    Roy Romer

    His legacy entrenched, Roy Romer seemed happy to have Coloradans remember him as the rugged, bomber-jacket-wearing governor he was. But less than two years after leaving office, history was already being rewritten -- or repainted, in the case of Romer's official portrait. In what turned out to be a bit of a secret operation, Romer removed from the State Capitol… More >>
  • Best unexpected performance by a city administrator

    Veggo Larsen

    When Tea Party founders Chuck Bonniwell and Mike Dunafon wanted their man in Glendale, they brought in Veggo Larsen, a financial planner from Manhattan, to run the town -- and do their bidding. But it turned out that Larsen was his own man who ignored the Tea Party's agenda in favor of pushing for the people. As a result, Bonniwell… More >>
  • Best new city for the Tea Party to take over

    Highlands Ranch

    The Tea Party's over in Glendale, and so far, its attempts to deal a winning hand in Central City have failed. Maybe the time has come to throw in the cards and move on to a town that could truly benefit from the Tea Party's colorful antics: Highlands Ranch. … More >>
  • Best city newsletter

    Timberlines Lone Tree

    The new city of Lone Tree, tucked beside Park Meadows, is tiny -- but it displays big humor in its newsletter, Timberlines, which recently included a photo essay suggesting that the town's hideous -- and empty -- Club Disney building be replaced by something a little grander -- say, the Taj Mahal. Even Lone Tree's motto provides a few chuckles:… More >>
  • Best speech by a politician

    Statewide moment of silence, April 20, 2000, 11:21 a.m.

    Need we say more? … More >>
  • Best toilet paper

    The Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Community Services Center of Colorado

    Those queers at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center don't wipe with just any toilet paper. No, they use sheets from The Homophobe Book, otherwise known as "a roll call of political stinkers." Printed on this exclusive tissue are drawings of Phyllis Schlafly, Pat Buchanan, Jesse Helms and Sam Nunn, along with shitty quotes from those well-known anti-gay crusaders. (Schlafly:… More >>
  • Best neighborhood to TP the houses

    Denver Country Club/Polo Grounds

    No, it's not nice, and, yes, you can get arrested, but covering the houses in the Denver Country Club/Polo Grounds neighborhoods with toilet paper in post-midnight raids is an age-old tradition in Denver. And for good reason: There are lots of places to hide behind well-trimmed bushes and stone entry gates, there are no major streets with long sight lines… More >>
  • Best reuse of a sewage plant

    Northside Park, Globeville

    The most captivating thing about this new park along the South Platte River is that it doesn't disguise what it used to be: a sewage-treatment plant. Instead of tearing down all the ponds and sluices that had been used to treat Denver's waste, the park's designers opted to save some money by simply filling them in, leaving an intriguing patchwork… More >>
  • Best wafting odor

    Jolly Rancher Candies

    In a city with its share of things that smell bad -- the Purina facility, the stock show grounds and the police department, to name a few -- it's a welcome relief every so often to sniff something sweet. To that end, when the wind is just right, the Jolly Rancher plant gives off the tantalizing scents of grape, apple,… More >>
  • Best guess for when Denver will be a one-daily town

    The day after the Justice Department turns down the JOA application from the Denver Post and the Rocky Mountain News

    Readers' choice: 2001… More >>
  • Best new revelation about John Denver

    His FBI file

    This year, the FBI released the 33-page file it had compiled on John Denver, which included reports of death threats made to the entertainer, as well as references to possible drug use. "It was alleged Denver was pretty well strung out on cocaine," said one entry linking the Mafia with a benefit concert that Denver had headlined in Colorado. Far… More >>
  • Best voice of reason in Columbine coverage

    Gene Amole, Rocky Mountain News

    Since the opening of Denver International Airport, which he considered a boondoggle, Amole, the veteran columnist for the Rocky Mountain News, has spent much of his time penning nostalgic offerings for the over-eighty set. But just prior to the first day of school at Columbine High School following the shootings there the previous April, Amole got back to current events… More >>
  • Best Columbine satire

    "Columbine Jocks Safely Resume Bullying" The Onion

    In September, The Onion, a national publication that makes up funny news (as opposed to those publications that would be better off making up funny news), produced a story in which fictional Columbine High halfback Jason LeClaire stated, "We have begun the long road to healing. We're bouncing back, more committed than ever to ostracizing those who are different." Kellie… More >>
  • Best PR campaign

    John and Patsy Ramsey

    Even people who loathe John and Patsy Ramsey (and there are loads of them) would have to admit that the couple conducted a hugely effective publicity tour to hype The Death of Innocence, their we-didn't-kill-our-daughter-JonBenét epic. From artful buildup (newspapers printed stories about the book's publisher keeping the tome under armed guard prior to its release) to media payoff (much-ballyhooed… More >>
  • Best collapse of a PR campaign

    John and Patsy Ramsey

    Shortly after the conclusion of the Ramseys' successful PR gambit, the pair made gaffe after high-profile gaffe, leading to the most entertaining flameout of the year. To recap: After John and Patsy's off-the-cuff offer to take lie-detector tests was accepted by the Boulder Police Department, they imposed a myriad of conditions in an apparent effort to weasel out of doing… More >>
  • Best JonBenét mystic

    Linda Arndt

    For psychic power, Dorothy Allison had nothing on Linda Arndt, the onetime Boulder cop who was the first officer on the scene following the disappearance of JonBenét in December 1996. In a Good Morning America interview with ABC's Elizabeth Vargas, the network's designated JonBenét quiz-master (she also spent a week interrogating Steve Thomas), Arndt came across like an X-Files character… More >>
  • Best book on the murder of JonBenét Ramsey

    JonBenét: Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation

    There have been many books written on the murder of six-year-old JonBenét Ramsey, some exploitative, some wildly speculative, some self-serving, some serious in intention and some plain stupid. But the clearest, most compassionate and most level-headed is JonBenét: Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation, by Steve Thomas, the leading detective on the case. Thomas's own inclinations are clear: He believes that… More >>
  • Best TV personality vs. government official feud

    Barbara Walters vs. Bill Owens

    The Monday after Barbara Walters dished with John and Patsy Ramsey on a very special edition of 20/20, Colorado Governor Bill Owens appeared with the queen of celebrity chats on Good Morning America, criticizing her for giving two people he obviously wants to keep under an umbrella of suspicion a free ride. Walters defended herself at the time, and later… More >>
  • Best radio personality vs. public mouthpiece feud

    Peter Boyles vs. Andrew Hudson

    After the arrest of two juveniles in the murder of schoolteacher Emily Johnson, mayoral spokesman Andrew Hudson publicly vilified KHOW talk-show host Peter Boyles for his lurid speculations about the killing -- and Boyles struck back with a vengeance, providing some of the past year's most colorful fireworks. Subsequently, the pair kissed and made up. Damn it! … More >>
  • Best radio personality vs. private mouthpiece feud

    Peter Boyles vs. Sam Riddle

    KHOW was the scene of even more fun when Peter Boyles and Sam Riddle, former spokesman for the late secretary of state, Vikki Buckley, got into a hilarious on-air spat over Riddle's new role as a spokesman for the parents of Isaiah Shoels (one of the students slain at Columbine). The bickering ended with Riddle implying that the proudly sober… More >>
  • Best radio personality vs. print reporter feud

    Peter Boyles vs. Lisa Levitt Ryckman

    Since shortly after the murder of JonBenét Ramsey became his second career, Peter Boyles has ridiculed Lisa Levitt Ryckman -- or, as he calls her, "Lisa with the Two Names" -- for allegedly being a lapdog for John and Patsy Ramsey, whom Boyles would like to see tried in connection with their daughter's death. Ryckman struck back in a letter… More >>
  • Best performance by a Coloradan in a national magazine

    Jessica Biel

    Desperate to dump the goody-two-shoes image she'd earned as one of the stars of 7th Heaven, seventeen-year-old Jessica Biel, a healthy (very) Boulder girl, took off both those shoes -- and everything else, and posed for a raunchy cover and nude spread in Gear. The pictorial earned the mag a $100 million lawsuit from Aaron Spelling, producer of Biel's TV… More >>
  • Best print reporter vs. print reporter feud, first place

    Mike Klis vs. Tracy Ringolsby

    Mike Klis and Tracy Ringolsby, baseball writers for the Denver Post and the Rocky Mountain News, respectively, have been on the outs since last summer, when Ringolsby knocked a Klis article about the impending departure of Rockies general manager Bob Gebhard not once, but twice during appearances on 950-AM/The Fan. But the situation boiled over in late May, when Ringolsby… More >>
  • Best print reporter vs. print reporter feud, second place

    Lynn Bartels vs. Mark Obmascik

    After the media mag Brill's Content published a puffy piece about how the News covered Columbine, the Post's Mark Obmascik fired off a letter noting numerous gaffes made by the News along the way. A month later, the News's Lynn Bartels, along with colleague Kevin Vaughan, shot back in the same publication and subsequently suggested that Obmascik's own Columbine writing… More >>
  • Best gossip columnist

    Dick Kreck, Denver Post

    He probably won't appreciate the wording of this accolade. He prefers the designation "city reporter" to "gossip columnist" -- and his regular offerings are indeed skimpier on dishiness than those of his colleagues and competitors. But in his good-spirited way, Dick Kreck does a better job than anyone else of demonstrating why Denver is an interesting, historical and fun place… More >>
  • Best new local publication

    In the Black

    It's still kind of small -- distribution is about 10,000 copies around the city -- but this Denver-based magazine chronicling the area's many professional African-Americans is developing quite a following, and plans are afoot to distribute it across the country, in the U.K., and as far away as Africa. Covering topics as diverse as the resurgence of actress Pam Grier,… More >>
  • Best collaborative underground comic strip

    "Hector"

    "Hector" is surreptitious and confused and underappreciated, and, therefore, everything great art ought to be. The cooperatively drawn comic strip is the pet project of Tom Motley; the collective (also called Hector) shifts shape regularly, losing some participants and gaining new ones, inviting guests and kicking out the old ones, but, hey -- that's what keeps it fresh in the… More >>
  • Best radio rise and fall

    Bob Visotcky

    Once the overseer of six powerful Denver radio outlets owned by Texas-based AMFM, Bob Visotcky was the most controversial figure in Denver radio during 1999 for a slew of reasons, including his defense of Howard Stern in the wake of some controversial post-Columbine comments and his decision to move classical station KVOD from FM to AM, which he figured no… More >>
  • Best radio shakeup

    Clear Channel merger

    Last October, Clear Channel, the owner of eight radio stations in the Denver area, merged with AMFM, controller of six local signals. Because of FCC regulations, Clear Channel was then forced to divest the half-dozen AMFM properties -- and the purchaser of three of them was Infinity Broadcasting, the most prominent challenger to Clear Channel nationwide. The results of these… More >>
  • Best radio station

    KVCU-AM/Radio 1190

    In last year's Best of Denver issue, we named KVCU-AM, the radio voice of the University of Colorado at Boulder, "Best Non-Commercial Station." This year that qualifier deserves to be removed. Although its management and personnel continue to change, the station is the best outlet in the area for intriguing music that hasn't been beaten to death by repetition. It's… More >>
  • Best web radio station

    www.localstation.com

    The brainchild of Tom Grant and David Lampe, www.localstation.com is an opportunity to hear the finest dance music being made in Colorado and beyond. The site includes numerous channels, tons of archived shows spotlighting genres such as techno and trance, DJ profiles and links aplenty. It'll make your computer sing.… More >>
  • Best radio talk-show host

    Rick Barber, KOA-AM/850

    The man who works the late shift, Rick Barber is unique among his contemporaries in that he allows callers and interviewees to yak to their heart's content instead of cutting them off if they don't agree with his opinions. There's a practical reason for this, of course: Because more folks call radio stations at 3 p.m. than 3 a.m., he's… More >>
  • Best place to see local TV reporters pretending to be local TV reporters

    Perfect Murder, Perfect Town by Lawrence Schiller

    The TV mini-series version of author Lawrence Schiller's JonBenét Ramsey opus, Perfect Murder, Perfect Town, featured numerous area reporters, including Brian Maass and Raj Chohan, portraying themselves -- and not once did any of them seem shocked that stooped, bald Colorado Springs investigator Lou Smit was personified by tall, hirsute Kris Kristofferson. Credibility be damned: Give us more face time!… More >>
  • Best morning radio show

    Bret Saunders, KBCO-FM/97.3

    Most radio programmers believe that the fastest route to big ratings is to ratchet up the obnoxiousness factor -- and more often than not, they're right. But KBCO's Bret Saunders is the exception to this rule. He's become one of the most-listened-to personalities on the air by rejecting the usual snickering tag-team byplay in favor of a format that blends… More >>
  • Best afternoon radio show

    The Sports Zoo, KOA-AM/850

    Pleasures don't get much guiltier than this -- but who's complaining? Although The Sports Zoo can seem downright stupid at times, the unmistakable chemistry between Dave Logan, Scott Hastings and Susie Wargin generally leaves drivers with smiles on their faces. And when you're stuck on I-25 at 5 o'clock on Friday afternoon, a smile can be a mighty powerful thing.… More >>
  • Best radio double shift

    Willie B., KBPI-FM/106.7

    His hey-dude antics have been an evening staple on KBPI for years -- so when the station's morning show, The Lockerroom, appeared on the verge of cratering (again!), no one was surprised that Willie B. was asked to save the day. What was unexpected, though, was his decision to work days and nights simultaneously; he spends Monday through Friday mornings… More >>
  • Best local TV newscast -- morning

    Channel 9

    Good a.m. television is a matter of balance: It should be bright and sunny enough to motivate viewers out the door, but not so gabby and giddy that folks will be looking for kittens to run over the second they slip behind the wheel. Channel 9 doesn't always turn this trick; that damn you-made-it-through-the-week song they play every Friday under… More >>
  • Best local TV newscast -- evening

    Channel 7

    As anyone in Denver who watches the news on anything like a regular basis knows all too well, no area news program is consistently excellent. But there's little doubt that Channel 7's 10 p.m. offering is the most improved. The anchor duo of Mitch Jelniker and Anne Trujillo is solid and credible; sports guy Tom Green is a fine writer… More >>
  • Best TV executive

    Cindy Velasquez, Channel 7

    Unlike most television execs, Velasquez doesn't hide behind a desk. Instead, she regularly steps in front of the camera to deliver editorials that have become tougher and more credible as time has worn on. Just as important, she's inspired the improvement of the station's once-unwatchable newscast. This return to respectability hasn't paid off in a larger audience: Channel 7's ratings… More >>
  • Best local TV anchor

    Adele Arakawa, Channel 9

    The longtime ratings leader is undergoing a serious brain drain: Ron Zappolo and Phil Keating have already split for Channel 31, and veteran Ed Sardella is retiring from day-to-day duties. So if the station stays aloft, it will be because of Adele Arakawa, who's solid, forthright, and lends a welcome edge to a broadcast that desperately needs one. Bet against… More >>
  • Best local TV sportscaster

    Vic Lombardi, Channel 4

    The sportscasters who dominate Denver these days tend to be a bit on the dull side; with rare exceptions, they deliver the scores and highlights with maximum efficiency and minimum flair. But not Vic Lombardi, who's flashy, funny, energetic and a little off-kilter. He shoots -- and he scores!Readers' choice: Tom Green, Channel 7… More >>
  • Best local TV weathercaster

    Marty Coniglio, Channel 7

    For years, Marty Coniglio's weather reports have been Denver's most accurate. Now he's finally getting a chance to prove it in prime time -- and he's making the most of it.Readers' choice: Mike Nelson, Channel 9… More >>
  • Best impending entry into the Denver TV news scene

    Channel 31

    It's too soon to tell if the newscast being assembled for our neighborhood Fox affiliate will be worth a damn. But by raiding high-profile talent such as Ron Zappolo, Tom Martino and Phil Keating, Channel 31 has already thrown a much-needed scare into the complacent folks at the network outlets. This just in: Fox is known for shaking things up. … More >>
  • Best local TV commercial

    Colorado Lottery

    The Colorado Lottery didn't think it was taking a gamble when it hired noted local advertising firm Karsh & Hagan Communications to produce its TV ads, and at first the decision paid off. Karsh & Hagan created some excellent and very funny ads, including the "Stranger Things Have Happened" series. In one of those ads, the company used the story… More >>
  • Best helicopter footage

    Channel 7

    In late August, Channel 7's helicopter videotaped a car chase that ended with Denver police officers beating the suspects they'd pursued. Not only was the footage a sterling display of pricey, state-of-the-art technology, but it generated some real news by providing graphic evidence of a police department run amok. That's the kind of thing television is supposed to do.… More >>
  • Best graphic traffic updates

    Channel 4

    Like a number of other stations, Channel 4 is now supplementing its morning news broadcasts with an info banner that runs along the bottom of the screen. Some of the data presented is superfluous: How many times do we need to see what temperature it's going to be at noon? But the notes about drive times on major thoroughfares, presented… More >>
  • Best hair on a local TV personality -- male

    Marc Soicher, Channel 4

    Marc Soicher favors the sort of slicked-back coiffure associated with Miami Heat coach Pat Riley and modern mafiosi; he always seems ready to make his viewers an offer they can't refuse. The style must be hereditary: Channel 9 sportscaster Drew Soicher, Marc's brother/doppelganger, wears a version of it, too. Their arrival in the market has meant boom times in the… More >>
  • Best hair on a local TV personality -- female

    Kyle Dyer, Channel 9

    The cut that adorns Kyle Dyer, who co-hosts Channel 9's morning block, seems simple, but it's deceptively complex. Her swingy, springy helmet of black hair represents a style midway between pixie and Prince Valiant that's perfect for a woman on the move. You go, girl.Readers' choice: Aimee Sporer, Channel 4… More >>
  • Best name of a Denver TV personality -- male

    Larry Blunt, Channel 4

    He'll give it to you straight.… More >>
  • Best name of a Denver TV personality -- female

    Jennifer Zeppelin, Channel 4

    She rocks!… More >>
  • Best proof that TV attracts the clinically insane

    Dan Daru, Channel 2

    The wild card on Channel 2's nutty new morning program, Dan Daru has become the loopiest a.m. performer since chimpanzee J. Fred Muggs was booted off the Today show. With his backward cap, manic delivery and energy enough to power New York City for the next hundred years, Daru, who's married to the station's nighttime anchor, Wendy Brockman, is blessedly… More >>
  • Best new old street

    East Colfax Avenue

    Central Denver's ongoing renaissance has finally caught up with Denver's main street. Once a lively and attractive urban boulevard, East Colfax went into a tailspin in the 1960s, attracting a mix of porno theaters, bars and fast-food joints. Over the years, many people simply avoided the thoroughfare altogether, overlooking the fact that it still had several fine historic buildings as… More >>
  • Best new building

    The Daniel L. Ritchie Center

    Call it monstrous or magnificent, bombastic or beautiful. That the spanking-new Daniel L. Ritchie Center for Sports and Wellness at the University of Denver could elicit such a wide range of responses suggests the aesthetic power of the $70 million athletic facility. Designed by Denver architect Cabell Childress, with technical support from the Davis Partnership, the center opened last fall,… More >>
  • Best new high-rise

    The Hines Tower

    High-rises have been popping up like mushrooms in the past year, but instead of being downtown, most of them are in the suburbs, where it seems that every community is creating its own skyscraper park -- just about all of which have been soaring successes. The first and foremost of these many decentralized central business districts is the Denver Tech… More >>
  • Best live philanthropist

    Sharon Magness

    The widow of Bob Magness, legendary founder of cable company TCI, Sharon Magness is one society lady who's concerned with more than just fashion shows and stuffy luncheons -- though she seems to like those, too -- and she's become Denver's go-to woman for those in need. While Magness is involved with many of the groups traditionally patronized by Denver's… More >>
  • Best historic rehab

    Sugar Building and Annex

    It was downright bizarre. Over the last decade, one LoDo building after another has been cleaned up and given renewed life. But until late last year, the neighborhood's grand dame, the Sugar Building, and her Wazee Street consort, the Sugar Building Annex, stood right in the middle of this urban revival, empty and neglected. Both of these early-twentieth-century modernist buildings… More >>
  • Best save from the wrecking ball

    Midland Building

    In 1992, despite its charming 1920s Italian Renaissance revival style, the venerable old Midland Building had been written off by everyone, including the city's hardcore preservationists. Believe it or not, the high-rise wasn't, at the time, considered to be historically valuable. The fact that it was designed by one of Denver's greatest early-twentieth-century architectural firms, Fisher and Fisher, didn't seem… More >>
  • Best renovation of a local landmark

    The Sculptured House

    I-70 commuters call it "the flying-saucer house" or "the Sleeper house," after its cameo appearance in a Woody Allen movie, but architect Charles Deaton considered it a personal statement of freedom. The acquisition of Deaton's masterpiece by software mogul John Huggins, after years of neglect by a previous owner, is good news for all lovers of non-Euclidean geometry. Huggins is… More >>
  • Best surviving example of classic Cherry Creek chic

    Ilona of Hungary building

    Cherry Creek has undergone relentless change in the last ten years, and although the neighborhood has never been more alive with shoppers and residents, the new buildings being thrown up to accommodate them are...not so alive. Among the ugly new additions, however, is an elite but ever-dwindling group of gorgeous older buildings that have long defined Cherry Creek as a… More >>
  • Best bright idea downtown

    Relighting the facade of the old Chamber of Commerce building

    In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, people were so excited by the development of the electric light that they found applications for it that we can hardly imagine today, like attaching bare lightbulbs to oak beams. One forgotten device was bathing a building's facade in light after nightfall. When Silversmith Cohen began to rehab the old Chamber of… More >>
  • Best new old-timey building

    1899 Wynkoop Building

    It's fashionable in architecture to put up new buildings in styles that date back a hundred years. But many of these new old-timey buildings are too conservative to be visually interesting. Not so for the 1899 Wynkoop Building, which was developed by the Nichols Partnership and Loftus Development and designed by Sheers + Leese Associates and the Neenan Company. The… More >>
  • Best place to take an afternoon nap without being disturbed

    The State Capitol committee meeting rooms

    Most people prefer to nod off in their own homes or offices, but then again, not every home or office has central air conditioning. So why not head over to the three-month homes/offices of our elected lawmakers? Take a seat in one of the big, comfy chairs in a basement committee meeting room, where the temperature stays at a moderate… More >>
  • Best place to take an afternoon nap and feel smart

    Main library, University of Colorado at Boulder

    At CU's main library, you can absorb the works of Aristotle, Socrates, Petrarch, Shakespeare, Kant, Crumb, Trudeau and the Marquis de Sade by way of osmosis as you nap luxuriously in one of the many study cubicles or on the couches that have been conveniently interspersed throughout. There's nothing more impressive to a smart gal or guy than someone lying… More >>
  • Best extracurricular activity

    Denver Neighborhood Women's History Trail, Women of the West Museum

    Kids will be kids, and that's the real beauty of this project: Fourth- and fifth-grade "history detectives" at Dora Moore School did all the legwork for the Women of the West Museum's Denver Neighborhood Women's History Trail project, the first link in what museum officials hope will one day become an interconnected trail through the West designed to acknowledge the… More >>
  • Best curricular activity

    Escuela Guadalupe

    Escuela Guadalupe is a small private endeavor developed under the wing of Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, itself a cast-iron anchor in the midst of a community torn by poverty and struggle. The school debuted last year, catering only to students in kindergarten through grade two. But small isn't necessarily problematic; in fact, it's the escuela's saving grace: Offering straightforward… More >>
  • Best dead philanthropist

    Bill Daniels

    When he was alive, cable mogul Bill Daniels was known for his generosity toward employees and colleagues alike, helping dozens of locals launch their own businesses. When he passed away earlier this year, Daniels left the bulk of his $1.4 billion estate to create a foundation that will become Colorado's largest, giving out 5 percent of its assets every year.… More >>
  • Best way for Denver to celebrate the real start of the millennium

    Party! Party!

    And we're talking a big party, too -- a genuine blowout downtown, where Denver residents can dance in the streets instead of being tossed off of them by jackbooted cops, as they were during last year's party-pooping December 31 crackdown. Hey, it wasn't the real start to the millennium, anyway, city officials belatedly pointed out. So true. And now we're… More >>
  • Best goodwill ambassador -- at home

    John Hickenlooper

    He's everywhere! He's everywhere! When Bill Gates came to town, who sat up front, looking more Microsofty than Gates himself? John Hickenlooper. When it's time to pick a new architect for the Denver Art Museum, who will be putting his Beatlemania-coiffed head next to that of First Lady Wilma Webb? John Hickenlooper. Ever since the self-professed recovering geologist got involved… More >>
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