Colorado CRUSH Walls 2017
Last Sunday I woke up with an idea to get a sitter and get downtown to RiNo to see the Colorado Crush Walls festival! A date night was in order. Truth be told, I was UBER moody, read, "bi-polar," (poor husband), and then by the time husband mentioned finding a sitter I almost changed my mind about heading out. Ever do that? BUT, we went to watch husband play soccer, and something about watching my man do what he loves, a little about him saying, "SNAP out of it and BE HAPPY already..." and perhaps all that sunshine against Golden, Colorado's foothills in the backdrop of the game got me in the spirit to spend solo time with my guy.
I had sort of an idea bout heading down to the RiNo area to see all the new graffiti artists and the fresh murals for the Crush Walls festival, but I wasn't sure where we would eat down there. I have a running list of all the places I want to go, and half of them were closed Sunday nights. One place we have been meaning to try since reading about it was Sushi Rama, where sushi come right in front of you on a conveyor belt. Husband had been talking about sushi so it was kismet. I will say that while the place is super cute, and TINY, the prices are not that small. And boy those tiny plates add up at the end! We had a ball grabbing and trying and noshing on all their rolls whizzing by, but the pieces of sushi fish themselves seemed dry. The plum wine was delicious though!
Before we grabbed dinner, we strolled around the area, listened to the dj spinning outside Cold Crush a bit and just poked around the walls and alleys around Denver Central Market, (27th & Larimer). Another place I was hoping to go to was closed, the jazz club Nocturne Denver, a MUST! Incredible. Bummer, but we had a really great time despite. There were a lot of peeps out walking around seeing the action, but it was not overly crowded or hot as it was a Sunday night. The Broncos game was going on still and the Rockies had just let out a bit earlier, and it seemed super neighborly and casual, not crowded or touristy, except us! Ha! We never get any photos of us, so we wanted to ask someone to take our photo. I usually end up picking someone who does not speak English, or I have asked people who turn out to have handicaps that have prevented a steady hand, I am serious. I choose badly when it comes to finding a passerby to take our photo. So this time, we scanned the people around us in the parking lot beside Denver Central Market, where all those photos of the girls were taken last November, so tiny they were! I suggested the "cool dude in the black hat." We interrupted his conversation to see if he wouldn't mind. He was so nice and up for it and as I was apologizing to the girls and saying it was, "parents night out," they said that it was okay and that we had a great photographer, a famous graffiti artist! When I discovered he was THE muralist behind the work outside Nocturne Denver and Cold Crush I was solo embarrassed! Good thing he was a very sweet and down-to-earth guy! THANK YOU Detour303!
After dinner we hadn't saved room in our tummies much, but we wanted to step inside Denver Central Market to get a lick at High Point Creamery. I remembered they had a pumpkin flavor and sure enough, it's baaaack! It was SO. AMAZING! We also strolled that corner a bit more and discovered another restaurant we added to our list.
As a Colorado native, the changes happening all around this city are mind blowing! It is SO HARD to describe to people the Denver that was compared to what it is now, because more often than not, you are trying to explain it to someone NEW here! It is WILD, guys. This are was NO place to eat dinner just 10 years ago, let alone stroll, have ice cream, or hear jazz music. NOW? Incredible. A true asset to the city, and Denver Central Market has only increased the popularity and stimulated the gentrification in this area. BUT, the artists, the people, the culture seeps in. The weeds, the chain link fences, the graffiti, the homeless, the smell of urine, the raspy cackles of drunkards in the dark as you get into your parked car, the trash dumpsters and the old buildings and church steeples stamped against the blue skyline. Denver, I hope and pray you keep some of your best bones and soul. Denver is not that old of a city to begin with so what little historic architecture we have, I feel, should be treated like that famous gold stuff that brought those wagons out west in the first place.
I have been fascinated with graffiti art since I was a teen growing up in Commerce City where I had my time as a "skater girl," and found myself enveloped in the hip-hop, skateboarding scene. I remember a guy from church, he was a "tagger," and there was something interesting about that juxtaposition of a kid who could spray art out of a can and come cleaned up, quiet and polite for church. I wonder if he still sprays.
You can read about the history of the Colorado Crush festival and see why they started it back in 2010 here. A lot of it is about community preservation, and hitting home some of the things I brushed on here. I want to take the girls down there and see what they think this time around, a year later.