Nothing can re-create the feeling of wandering the stacks of a used bookstore; that experience simply doesn't translate to the Internet. And given the way inventory comes in and goes out, it's not surprising that a lot of the city's best used bookstores lack a true online storefront. So it's exciting to see that Highland mainstay West Side Books is in the process of revamping its website to make it easier to buy gift certificates and books (both physical and audio); in the meantime, the store is taking orders for shipping or pick-up via its side door.

westsidebooks.com

There are a lot of reasons that we've fallen deeper in love with the Mile High Comics warehouse this year. It's more than just a treasure trove of all things geek, a place to find both antique comics and the latest issues; a hub for gamers, toy collectors, poster aficionados and more. It's also been hosting the Drag for All Ages show, which has given up-and-coming drag performers a chance to strut their stuff. But even though the giant warehouse is closed to the public, Mile High Comics has a lot to offer. If you're looking to spend long days ahead catching up on your favorite Marvel and DC superhero adventures, milehighcomics.com is the place to go.

milehighcomics.com

Colorado's high bar for quality, independent radio was raised yet again in 2019 when KUVO unveiled its newest station on the HD2 signal, The Drop. This listener-driven station focuses on hip-hop and R&B, digging into the genres' stylistic roots while celebrating the next generation of sounds. Program director Nikki Swarn (who also DJs on the station under the moniker Amerykah Jones) is a twenty-year Colorado radio veteran who pays special attention to the local scene, ensuring that those from the Denver area make it to the airwaves. The self-proclaimed "people's station for R&B and hip-hop" takes suggestions directly from listeners via social media, mixing requested tracks with the diverse tastes of hosts Bella Scratch, DJ Dif'Rent, Unique, Ontoneyo and Hakeem Furious.

kuvo.org

Nobody serves up a Friday night get-down on the airwaves quite like KUVO's Latin Soul Party. Listeners are treated to both good jams and good times as Danny Valenzuela, aka "MC Cuervo," "Jammin Joe" Serna, "Jedi" George Murad and Ricky O throw down tracks and trade friendly conversation. From Tito Puente and Tower of Power to Selena and the Beastie Boys, Latin Soul Party delivers the perfect ingredients for a create-your-own dance party to jam out to at home, in the car or at the bar. The funky, Latin-influenced playlist is the initial draw, but the show's secret sauce is the banter between DJs, who carry on in their own Chicano-rooted Denver style. Hop in and turn up the bass.

kuvo.org

Cruising Federal Boulevard has long been an act of celebration, solidarity and resistance for Denver's Chicano community. Now the car and truck clubs of the city have an official day to be loud and proud with the affirmed proclamation of "La Raza and Barnum Park: A Cruise Down Fedz Day." This City of Denver-recognized holiday goes down in August, with a gathering at La Raza Park followed by a procession along Federal Boulevard to Barnum Park. The symbolic route also puts a spotlight on the connection between the Northside and the Westside, two crucial neighborhoods representing Denver's historic Mexicano and Chicano neighborhoods.

Best Organization Serving Homeless Youth

Urban Peak

Urban Peak is a source of stability and comfort for Denver's unhoused teens, and these days the need for basic life services is only growing. The nonprofit has committed to continuing to provide overnight and day shelter, long-term housing solutions, street outreach, medical services, education and employment programming while keeping meals, showers, laundry services and case management available and uninterrupted. Beyond its usual services, Urban Peak has established a crisis-assistance fund to help with the expanded costs of support in this time, including helping to cover sick leave for crucial staff members, ensuring that the health and well-being of young people remains a priority. As always, Urban Peak doesn't kid around.

urbanpeak.org

Those musicians who have fallen victim to show cancellations can still get their instrument to work for them by pawning it at this longtime family-owned and -operated business. It will be just like your instrument is going on tour, just without you. Big Daddy will loan cash on the dollar and give you a ten-day grace period after thirty days are up to cover the interest. Kick the COVID-19 blues and recoup your instrument after it all blows over.

bigdaddyspawndenver.com

Remote access and delivery have become critical for everything from education to groceries...but birth control is more accessible than ever. Planned Parenthood Direct is a mobile app provided locally by Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. Birth-control pills are available for $25 per pack with a twelve-month prescription, and no visit is necessary; other forms of birth control include the patch and ring. As an added convenience, your prescription will be mailed directly to your door with no charge for delivery.

plannedparenthooddirect.org

Being stuck at home can quickly become isolating, and Maxfund Animal Shelter is here to help, with a temporary foster program that allows you to take care of a kitty without the pressure of committing to becoming a full-time pet owner. The shelter is looking for homes that can temporarily foster cats — especially felines with medical needs — so that furry friends requiring special attention can have the human support they require. Think of the possibilities: Adopting a cat could teach kids with sudden free time how to be responsible pet owners or be the solution for a grandmother with no one to talk to.

maxfund.org

As growing public-health concerns overlap heavily with the needs of unhoused individuals and people who inject drugs, the demand for the Harm Reduction Action Center's services is on the rise. Instead of closing its doors, the nonprofit is meeting the current challenge by continuing its mobile street-outreach program and offering the option of short visits to wash hands, pick up hygiene kits and dispose of needles at its new brick-and-mortar location during the day. The center's no-judgment approach to health and human services is a model that works.

harmreductionactioncenter.org

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