Plenty of food for thought in the District 1 council race

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The Colorado Restaurant Association wanted to encourage a restaurateur to run for the District 1 seat on Denver City Council that Rick Garcia's vacating, and so far it has two, sort of, and a third candidate who's a leader in the urban farming movement.

John Haney, a Denver police detective who co-owns Haney's Coffee Shop at 3814 Lowell Boulevard, has declared, as has Paula Sandoval, a Democratic state senator who owns Tamales by La Casita at 3561 Tejon Street with her husband, Paul Sandoval. And then there's Susan Shepherd, a political organizer and urban farmer, who sowed some seeds for her campaign at La Crema (formerly Cafe Cafe) last night.

And that's just the start of the lineup. Along with Haney, Sandoval and Shepherd, Larry Ambrose, a longtime neighborhood activist, has also officially declared, as has Chris Jeffrey, who has a consulting business.

Four more candidates have announced, but have yet to file their paperwork: Georgia Sigala, a nonprofit coordinator; John Lehmann, an environmental lawyer (and son of Councilwoman Peggy Lehmann); attorney Ken Padilla and Randle Swan, treasurer of the Colfax Business Improvement District. And state representative Jerry Frangas may make a run for the seat, too.

The Berkeley Regis United Neighbors group will host a forum for the candidates at 7 p.m. March 24 at the Oriental Theatre; the West Colfax business Improvement District will host a forum at 6 p.m. March 31 at Confluence Ministries, 1400 Quitman Street.

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