Best Talking Library 2002 | The Colorado Talking Book Library | Best of Denver® | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Denver | Westword
The Colorado Talking Book Library (CTBL) was created to give disabled book-lovers more options. The government-funded program offers Braille books, taped books and playback machines. You must apply and meet certain requirements to use the facility, but once you do, it's completely free, including usage and shipping of the books and machines. Adding to the convenience, books may be ordered by phone.

Small and unassuming, Hijos de Sol is a good deed in every way, from the stunning Leo Tanguma mural that dresses up the neighborhood and announces the little store's existence around the corner, to its humanitarian intent to ensure that profits from coffees and handcrafts go to the Latin American villagers who package or create them. But as the mural's shimmering presence outside implies, Hijos also supports art, offering striking black-and-white Diego Rivera prints, postcards of works by contemporary Mexican artists and a specialized selection of art books, including particularly beautiful bilingual or Spanish-language children's picture books, such as Matthew Gollub's Oaxacan folk tales with illustrations by painter and muralist Leovigildo Martínez and the autobiographical Family Pictures, by illustrator Carmen Garza. ¡Ándele!

Aficionados maintain that African art tells stories. That's African Experiences owner Miles Forsyth's story, and he's sticking to it. Originally from South Africa, he returns to his home continent every year to visit and to hunt down merchandise, and he's been wildly successful. The walls of his shop are lined with fantastic tribal masks, as well as vibrant patterned rugs and weavings, and the exotic Zulu baskets woven in geometric earth tones are sublime. Tribe it -- you'll like it.
Prince Philip's Pipes and Tobacco treats you like royalty, with a marvelous selection of all-legal imports and an extremely knowledgeable and customer-oriented proprietor, Jon Cacherat, to help guide you in your selections. Celebs and working stiffs fire up stogies and trade tips on pipe tobacco in the shop's thoroughly democratic (and pungent) atmosphere.

Best Road Trip Destination for Western Paraphernalia


Far outside the city lights lies the Savage-West, a Western memorabilia store. Owner Kris Hurley deems her diverse inventory "ranch and farm junk." But whether you desire the sun-bleached skulls of long-dead longhorn cattle, brightly colored Mexican blankets or just Western antiques, Savage-West probably has it. Hurley and her partner, Gina Cox, opened the store last November and plan to diversify with some seasonal and new products, including Western-themed Christmas ornaments and bucking-bronco placemats. For you greenhorns, Keenesburg is about an hour east of the city on I-76.
Yee-haw! For years, Rockmount Ranchwear Co. was only a wholesale operation, shipping Western wear around the world from its headquarters in a LoDo warehouse. But this spring, Rockmount decided to share the wealth -- of history, of fashion, of fun -- by allowing visitors to buy Rockmount products out of the office's charming little showroom and on the Web at Lined with vintage Rockmount items salvaged at thrift stores and purchased over eBay, the place is a veritable museum of how the West was worn; you won't be able to leave without a bolo tie, one of those cool new silk scarves, or a Western shirt that's a new take on a classic. (Rockmount invented the snap button, after all.)

The real Lilly, who retired in 1984, first stuck her foot in the door of Camelot in the early '60s, when her hand-sewn signature shifts in breezy tropical prints caught on in Palm Beach, soon to be embraced by Jackie Kennedy and a whole generation or two of East Coast preppies. To her credit, Pulitzer's ultra-simple invention has never gone completely out of style since, particularly among beachfront society, but it's now back with a vengeance. Limeade's time is here, and we've snagged one of ten stores opening nationally this year, in -- where else? -- wildly appropriate Cherry Creek North. Ready for your close-up?

Best Place to Dress Like (or in) an '80s Rock Star

Five & Dime

For almost ten years, Lynn Pastore has been selling retro clothing out of her 13th Avenue storefront, but her latest line is a stretch -- sometimes literally. The Five & Dime's suddenly doing a booming business in old rock-and-roll T-shirts, the forerunners of all those souvenirs that would soon become a mandatory part of the concert experience. Although Pastore puts the best ones on her Web site,, the store always has a good selection of merchandise from the great and near-great of the arena-rock era. Pastore's catalogue is as big as a Styx fan's hair, and if you are one of those who said yes to Yes, you're sure to find some threads here to keep your band's memory alive and kicking out the jams.

Best Place to Buy Not-So-Cheap Elvis Sunglasses

The Bent Lens

The King may be dead, but his style lives on. The Bent Lens now sells a fabulous pair of the King's sunshades by Neostyle, the original maker of Mr. Presley's infamous specs. These rock-n-roll replicas are every bit as decadent as the original: Plated in 14K gold with star-making rose-brown gradient lenses, the "Nautic" sells for the King-size price of $425. But, hey, they might just turn you into a hunka hunka burnin' love.

Plan to make a dramatic yet affordable entrance at your next Halloween party with a little help from the Theatre Department at Red Rocks Community College. For $150 plus security deposit for the weekend, you can dress from head to toe in Renaissance splendor, and for about $5 more, you can find the ultimate accessory. The school rents stage props, too. Rentals are available to schools, theatre companies, church groups, businesses and other organizations -- as well as zany individuals.

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