History Colorado: "A" should be for "Advertising"

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History Colorado bills Denver A to Z as a "lighthearted and interactive exhibit" from Adrenaline to Zombies. Zzzzz. "Near and Dear" mountains for "N"? It's hard to come up with a smart alphabet-shtick variation; I try and fail in this week's column. And I already have a correction: "A" should be for "Advertising," because History Colorado has a smart gimmick going.

I was at Bubba Gump's on Saturday -- hey, the volleyball tournament was just across the street at the Colorado Convention Center -- when a round of coasters landed on our table. They were for History Colorado, and promised "Stories Told Daily."

See also: An alternative Denver A to Z exhibit to replace History Colorado's snoozer

One side asked, "What happened to Mike the Chicken after his head was chopped off?" The other side gave the answer: "He lived."

The coaster was enough to inspire the out-of-town family I was dining with to head to the History Colorado Center between games.

Too bad the "V" in the insipid Denver A to Z is not for "Volleyball." (It's "Variety.") But still, that was a smart piece of Advertising.

Here's the rest of the History Colorado story of this state's celebrity poultry:

Mike the Headless Chicken Fruita farmer Lloyd Olson only wanted a delicious chicken dinner. Instead, his hunger hatched the career of Mike the "Headless Wonder Chicken." Olson's ax sliced poor Mike's head clean off, but missed his brain stem--enough to keep the chicken alive. "Miracle Mike" shook off the blow as if nothing happened. Mike's tenacity -- he lived an additional 18 months -- made him a chicken celebrity. He toured the United States in 1945, with eager audiences paying 25 cents to see the acephalous wonder. Today, Fruita remembers Mike with a statue and a festival, held each May.

From the Calhoun: Wake-Up Call archive: "A century and a half later, the wounds of Sand Creek are still fresh."

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