Colorado is having a tough time. The ramifications of widespread wildfires and the Aurora theater shooting are still coming into focus, and many questions won't be answered for months. But we're not going anywhere. In Westword's annual attempt to chronicle on paper -- to count the ways, if you will -- how we love our home state, it was as tough as ever to narrow the list down to the greatest, strangest and highest reasons we're proud to live here. If you live here, too, count this as a written fist-bump. If you don't, maybe this list will tempt you to move here.
Click through for a complete look at the fifty reasons Colorado reigns supreme, and continue below to see why it's held that spot for years.
See Also: • "Despite a tragic summer, Colorado is still the real sunshine state" • "50 reasons we're glad we live in Denver and not the United States" • "50 reasons Colorado is the best state in America"
50. Mountain Standard Time is really the way to go.
49. The first snowfall of the year. Depending on whether your Subaru is packed in, any snowfall of the year.
48. Ours are some of the best public skate parks in the world. If you don't believe us, ask Lil Wayne.
47. I'll have the double chocolate peanut butter porter. On Nitro.
45. Frozen Dead Guy Days: We have a festival dedicated to a dead body found packed in dry ice in a Tuff Shed.
44. Chipotle is our Starbucks, so you can find a giant, cylindrical piece of Denver, wrapped up in foil, wherever you may travel.
43. Deer turn into elk at 10,000 feet. (Just testing you).
42. People fish for carp in the Platte, right in downtown.
41. Our new film incentives law welcomes casts and crews with autograph books wide open. We're ready for our close-up, Steven Spielberg.
40. There's a pot leaf on our state flag. Wait, there isn't? Start rounding up signatures! All you need is 86,000!
39. 72-degree days in October -- and November.
38. We keep our balls at a constant temperature. Our baseballs.
36. The canning line at Oskar Blues, the first and the largest craft brewery in the nation to package its scrumptious suds in cans.
34. Without South Park, there would be no Trey Parker and Matt Stone. And without Parker and Stone, there would be no South Park.
33. Bob Dylan wears Rockmount. You can, too.
32. Being first in the lift line. Or even tenth.
31. Buying Colorado peaches, peppers, cantaloupes and sweet corn at the farmers' market. Forgetting why you didn't buy cantaloupes last year.
Click through for more we love about Colorado. 30. Getting lucky after a cruiser ride.
28. It can be sunny on one side of the Eisenhower Tunnel and snowing on the other. In June.
27. Now that billionaire Phil Anschutz is footing the bill at the five-star Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, the complimentary toiletries are classier than ever.
25. Hunter Thompson ran for mayor of Aspen.
24. Even ancient Ice Age life forms couldn't stay hidden from Colorado for long.
23. Shotskis are old hat. We've got beerskis.
21. Relief in the fact that backyard chickens are legal, but that my neighbors don't have them.
19. Pagosa Springs has the deepest hot springs in the world.
17. They want us. They need us. And, this year at least, Colorado isn't a flyover state when it comes to the two men running for President.
13. Aurora's staunch attempts to change gears -- and its more than 400 ethnic restaurants.
12.The dive bars, pawn shops and late-night glory of South Broadway.
Click through for more we love about Colorado. 10. The Bootleg Bottom Trail in Golden Gate Canyon State Park. One of many trails in this popular state park, the hike that begins at Bootleg Bottom has a little surprise just a few minutes in: an old cabin and a lesson about the history of bootlegging in the area during Prohibition.
9. Our Den-Mex tradition guarantees us the best Mexican food in the country.
8. Every year, more than 450 breweries bring 35,000 gallons of beer to Denver so that we can drink as much of it as possible. Thank you Great American Beer Festival.
6. C'mon, admit it. You know you kind of love it the bright blue "Mustang," aka Blucifer, at Denver International Airport, his thick veins and his red eyes. What other city would have had the cojones to erect something this grotesque as its welcome mat?
3. There are two kinds of hangovers in this town, a Santiago's hangover and a Chubby's/Bubba Chinos hangover. Whichever one it is, you know you can blast it with some spicy, warming green chile from one of these places.
2. Were you expecting us to say Casa Bonita?
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More from our Things To Do archive: "50 reasons we're glad we live in Denver and not the United States."