Tips for Transplants: Ten Rules for February in Denver

That's no moon.  No wait...moon.   You're right, totally a moon.
That's no moon. No wait...moon. You're right, totally a moon. Annette Wagner at Flickr
We're heading into the shortest month of the year, and if you think about it, were you given the choice of any of the months to limit to just four short weeks, you’d probably choose February anyway: It’s freezing outside, all the holidays are a good month in the rear-view, and the only “occasion” for the month is Valentine’s Day — which is something of a racket, no matter how someone might indulge your "I choo-choo-choose you!" card.

Here are ten things you should keep in mind in the Mile High for the month of February — you know, aside from the obvious "Stay warm."

10. Take Advantage of Restaurant Week
It might feel like a gimmick, and it sort of is, but it’s an awesome one. You get to sample some of Denver’s best dining options for less than you’d normally pay, and do it in a celebratory atmosphere, to boot. Restaurants generally take this week seriously, and if you’re an aspiring foodie, there’s no better time to pick a few destinations you’ve been wanting to try. So make your reservations, put on your going-out duds, and enjoy.

9. So Long, Stock Show
You probably noticed it toward the end of January: The traffic on I-70 is suddenly lighter, and you’re not sitting in the shadow (and the smell) of the Purina plant wondering what the holdup is. That holdup was the Stock Show, and now that it’s done, you can take down your Christmas lights (no, make that please, for the love of God, take down your Christmas lights) and go back to enjoying Denver as ours again.

click to enlarge Kids, there was a time long ago when we used to have this thing called Sniagrab... - DES RUNYAN AT FLICKR
Kids, there was a time long ago when we used to have this thing called Sniagrab...
Des Runyan at Flickr
8. Get Your Ski On
February is one of the few months in Colorado when you can truly depend on skiing. The season sometimes starts late and sometimes ends early; the snow usually comes in fits and spurts in many of the traditional ski months. But February? There’s really no mystery as to whether there’s going to be skiing in February. With only four weekends this month, you want to get up to the mountains, strap on the skis, and ski while the skiing is good.

click to enlarge I will take one million boxes. - MARIT & TOOMAS HINNOSAAR AT FLICKR
I will take one million boxes.
Marit & Toomas Hinnosaar at Flickr
7. Girl Scout Cookie Season
Admit it: You, like the rest of America, are sort of addicted to these scrumptious little obligations. And whether it’s a friend at work, a family at church, the neighbors down the street or your own kids, you know someone wanting to sell you these little boxes of pure guiltless pleasure. Hey, it’s for a good cause, right? Eat up. Did you know each box of Thin Mints is a single serving? Or can be, anyhow.

click to enlarge I'd laugh, but my goatee has iced over and I can no longer open my mouth. - PAUL SABLEMAN AT FLICKR
I'd laugh, but my goatee has iced over and I can no longer open my mouth.
Paul Sableman at Flickr
6. Enjoy the Last Low-Snow Month
If you look at the dates of record snowfall in Denver, none of the top twenty happened in the month of February. Most, in fact, happened in the months of March or April, when Denver residents know to expect loads of the fluffy white stuff. (In this, October and December are no slouches, either.) But in February — and January, to a lesser degree — Denver doesn’t see too much. A flurry here and there, sure, and the mountains are getting pounded with storm after storm, but few of them make it to the Front Range. Come next month, the sky’s (sometimes) the limit.

Keep reading for more tips for February.

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Teague Bohlen is a writer, novelist and professor at the University of Colorado Denver. His first novel, The Pull of the Earth, won the Colorado Book Award for Literary Fiction in 2007; his textbook The Snarktastic Guide to College Success came out in 2014. His new collection of flash fiction, Flatland, is available now.
Contact: Teague Bohlen