When I first moved to northwest Denver more than two decades ago, my then-neighbor provided a handy reminder of the fact that I now lived in Highland, not "Highlands," a name that had appeared in Westword: He put a baseball bat labeled with the correct name on my front porch. Since then, this particular part of Highland has been dubbed LoHi, for Lower Highland, and other less catchy nicknames for northwest Denver have popped up, too, including SloHi. But this big slice of Denver has always had another name, too: the Northside. And these days, with gentrification rapidly changing the face of the area, people are holding tight to the Northside name, including Bobby LeFebre, who just wrote the play Northside, and former Denver Public Schools boardmember Andrea Merida, who offered this to our recent story on old-time Italian joint Lechuga's opening a cart on the mall. Says Merida:
It's "Northside," not "north-side." Get your carpetbagger hipster writers to learn our neighborhoods.
That "north-side" referred to direction, not the venerable Highland neighborhood. (In our style, it's "east-side eatery," "south-side saloon," "north-side nosh"...and then there's "old-time" and "red-sauce.") But thanks, Andrea; we always appreciate reminders of this town's history. And a posted comment is always better than a baseball bat.
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Let's just hope that the rain lets up so that Lechuga's can bring the flavor of the Northside down to the mall today.