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Oct. 19, 2014

Old Denver Hood Gets Facelift

aparment buildingIt’s nearly complete! The seven-story Amaranth Apartment building at 11th Avenue and Gaylord commissioned by Denver developer MGL Partners LLC is nearly complete. The original building was bought in 2008 with the idea of building a luxury senior housing that had secured them a loan for $41.1, but the environment of the Great Recession wasn’t a good one for the luxury senior housing. MGL Partners were forced to rethink their idea. The new idea would be a seven story, 34-unit apartment building.

The project wasn’t very popular at first with Capitol Hill United Neighborhoods (CHUN). Their concerns were for the already impossible parking in the area to be aggravated by so many new tenants. But MGL showed its true strength by involving the residents, keeping them informed, obliging a more than necessary parking plan that would go beyond the city of Denver’s code of one parking space for every unit. Instead, MGL worked it out by building a two-level, below-grade parking garage with about 234 spaces. CHUN was more than happy with MGL’s dedication to the neighborhood and its new neighbors.

New Denver Apartment Buildings

After starting construction in 2012 with a 20-month construction period, the new apartment building is nearly complete. For months 11th Avenue was bustling with large cranes, demolition vehicles and dump trucks. The previous building was demolished in short time, the ground dug up and the building rebuild from bottom up.

The new Amaranth apartment building is a lovely new addition to this grand neighborhood. Flanked by Cheesman Park and Congress Park, snugly set alongside the Botanic Gardens, this masterpiece will certainly bring more neighbors to this bustling neighborhood.

And while MGL Partners build-a-new; just a of couple blocks down, Julie Koeppe Architects puts a new face on an ugly building at Marlene Apartments at 2315 12th Avenue.  The old building had its share of notorious residents who filled the rundown apartment building. A management company managed the Marlene apartments as the owner of the building resides out of state in New Mexico. As a result many of the tenants felt that the landlord cared little about the residents’ concerns. The worn-out carpets smelled of dust, the walls were bleak and the windows portrayed the building’s grim state. The updated Marlene Apartments building is predicted to be a vast improvement!

As old neighborhoods replenish old eyesores, new life is breathed into a continually growing and eclectic area of Denver. If you are interested in moving to the Congress Park area, contact one of our neighborhood experts at the New Era Group.

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Oct. 1, 2014

Beer Around the World Panel

beerWhile there are going to be many events during the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), one in particular marks a little shift in how American the GABF has become.

The American Beer Movement

One thing to take note is that the entire world is now looking to our movement in craft beer. When we began our craft beer movement at the beginning of the 1970s, it was truly a handful of pioneers with exceptional willpower that made it all happen. Men like Fitz Maytag who rekindled the old Anchor Brewing Company and would launch a movement that would influence the world 40 years later, or Jack McAuliffe, who would be an influential persona that would be imitated for his engineering and passion. Of course, Ken Grossman, creator of Sierra Nevada, who would put the US on the world beer map as perhaps the father of hoppy American beer. But more locally and very much the global kick starter is Charlie Papazian.

The Great American Beer Festival

Charlie Papazian moved to Boulder in 1981 and would bring the entire show into one ring, the Great American Beer Festival. All these men and many more have created a beer industry and culture that has never before been seen in world beer history. This influence is now being imitated around the world. As Italy, with all its history dating back as far as 900 BC, adds a new chapter in 1996 with beer. Or Germany, whose long standing brewing laws is now being scrutinized to keep up with craft beer. The American craft beer culture has brought longtime and legendary breweries from Belgium from the brink. Now they too are enjoying the resurgence of their beer as many craft American brewers have imitated their styles. But new beer cultures like Italy are emerging. Japan imports so many beers from around the world that they are now a big part of the movement. Brazil, Mexi-Cali, Peru, Argentina and Spain all have begun their craft beer movements.

The Craft Beer Scene in Denver

So it’s no surprise that during this great celebration of American craft beer there will be a panel of diplomats from around the world discussing their craft beer scenes here in Denver. Some of the attendants from 3 pm to 5 pm, October 2nd at Jazz@Jack’s, located at the Denver Pavilions on the 16th Street Mall, will be government representatives including top ambassadors/diplomats from Belgian, Canada, Japan and Mexico. Representing Italy will be locals Bryan Jansing and Paul Vismara who wrote the first book about the Italian craft beer movement, Italy: Beer Country. The event will be moderated by Ed Sealover, writer for the Denver Business Journal and author of Mountain Brew: A Guide to Colorado Breweries.

It’s certainly beer week in Colorado, but it’s a week being participated and watched by the entire world. I’ll toast to that.

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Sept. 22, 2014

What to do in October in Denver 2014

pumpkinIt soon will be October and for Denver that means the leaves are changing and the streets will be filled with Zombies, Ghouls, and Monsters in honor of the season of Scares. Here are just a few of the great things you can enjoy in Denver in October.

The Great American Denver Beer Festival (October 2nd-4th)

The Great American Beer Festival is the premier U.S. beer festival and competition. Each year, GABF represents the largest collection of U.S. beer ever served, in a public tasting event plus a private competition. GABF brings together the brewers and diverse beers that make the U.S. the world's greatest brewing nation. Get more information here.

Fright Fest (October 3rd - November 2nd)

During the next month, Elitch Gardens transforms into Family By Day and Fright By Night. Don't miss out on five weekends of scary fun at Denver's largest Halloween event - Fright Fest: Zombie Apocalypse! Click here for all the details!

5th Annual Urban Farm Fest (October 4th)

Come celebrate the Farm with a full-day of fun for the whole family and support the annual benefit event for The Urban Farm at Stapleton.  Enjoy your slice of country in the city from 10:00 am - 6:00 pm. $1 admission, $1 activity and food tickets, or $20 for 25 tickets. Check out all the details here.

Inside the Orchestra's Tiny Tots (October 11th)

"Tiny Tots gets children truly inside the orchestra by seating the audience on the floor and quite literally surrounding them with a 30 piece orchestra. Designed for children six and under, this 45-minute program gives young ones the chance to interact with the conductor and the musicians and learn about the instruments in the process. Tiny Tots audiences receive an up-close-and-personal performance in a casual, fun environment. Inside the Orchestra offers the only professional orchestra performance for kids under six in the country. The experience is one-of-a-kind!"  Learn all the fun details here.

Pumpkin Festival  (October 10th-12th)

Enjoy one of the favorite October traditions, the selection of your pumpkin to turn into a Jack O Lantern at the Denver Botanic Garden at Chatfield's Pumpkin Fest. Thousands of pumpkins will be available for you to find the perfect shape and size for your creative vision. The gardens will be filled with children's activities, crafts, and even carnival rides for your little ones.  Visit the official website here.

Denver Broncos! 

We can't overlook the Bronco's led by Peyton Manning.  If you are thinking of something to do in October you might want to consider picking up some tickets for the game and heading over to root on the team. Go Broncos!  Get your tickets today!

Rock 'n' Roll Denver Health & Wellness Expo, Marathon & 1/2 Marathon (Oct 17th-18th)

For two days, over 70 exhibitors will offer free samples, showcase the latest in running gear, sports apparel, health & nutritional information and much more. Pick up some last-minute race essentials before race day and be sure to visit the Brooks Official Merchandise Store. All runners must visit the expo to pick up their race number, gear bag and t-shirt.  Get event tickets here.

The Zombie Crawl (October 18th)

On Saturday October 18, 2014 at 2:00pm, Denver will be holding the largest Zombie gathering in history at Skyline Park. Remember, this is an ALL AGES and FREE event. Everyone is welcome. We do however ask that you bring a non-perishable food item to donate to the Food Bank of the Rockies. Click here to learn more.

Dracula (October 31st - November 2nd) 

Back by popular demand, Colorado Ballet will perform a special spine-tingling Halloween presentation of Dracula, at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House.  Dracula features choreography by Michael Pink and music by Philip Feeney, performed live by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra. Parental discretion is advised: This production is not recommended for young children. Learn more here.

We hope you enjoy a great October and if you have any questions about buying or selling a home we are here for you.

Also make sure to check out our easy-to-use tool for getting the current value of your home.

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Sept. 16, 2014

September 2014 Market Happenings

Market Snapshot

Good news! Coming into the 4th quarter of 2014 the state of the metro Denver real estate market remains strong. According to the National Association of Realtors, Denver has the fastest moving housing market out of the largest 140 markets nationwide, with an average of only 27 days to sell a home. So, let's dive in and take a closer look.

In Graphic 1 you see two charts. On the left are metro Denver home prices from 2008 - 2012. On the right are the same home prices from 2012 - 2014 (reducing the clutter of all the previous years). These charts show us how the housing market has progressed over the past six years.


Denver Average Home Price 
Start by looking at the green line which represents housing prices in 2008. 2008 was at the depths of the national economic crisis when top notch Wall Street companies were failing on a weekly basis, the Federal Reserve was debating how to step in to avoid a complete calamity, and the Consumer Confidence Index was trending at 30 year lows. Everything looked bad, nothing looked good, people stopped buying homes, and the housing market crashed. Average home prices collapsed from $266,000 in June 2008 to $219,000 by November as it seemed like the world had stopped and the public lacked confidence the market would ever recover.

But, of course, it did. It turned out that the Nov. 2008 prices were the bottom of the market and by May 2009, average home prices were already back above $260,000. What's more, prices have continued rising ever since, up almost 50 percent since Nov. 2008.

Look now at the chart on the right which shows the housing market from 2012 - 2014. We see that prices surged in 2012 and 2013, climbing 22 percent from Jan. 2012 to Dec. 2013. Many of my clients asked during this period if the market was completely overheated and heading for a crash. My response was that the underlying market fundamentals remained strong and I could foresee only continued gains in the market for the next few years.

So far in 2014 prices have continued to rise, but somewhat more slowly than the previous two years. Prices are up 7 percent in the past 12 months, just a hair above the 6 percent average price increase for the past 42 years in the metro Denver housing market. If you were to ask me today the same question, are we in an overheated market heading for a crash, my answer would remain the same - market fundamentals are strong and I'm bullish on the near to midterm horizon. Here are only a few reasons why:

  1. Inventory of homes. Inventory remains near record lows. In a normal market we'd expect to have about 18,000 properties on the market. Today we have about half that. It's a simple supply/demand equation. If there's no supply the demand pushes prices up.
  2. Supply of Homes. Speaking of supply, it has just not kept up with demand. Many sellers are afraid to put their houses on the market for fear they won't be able to find a replacement home, the result being that our supply of homes for sale continues to be restricted. Back to the Economics 101 supply/demand curve, lots of demand and constricted supply makes for a strong housing market.
  3. Consumer Confidence has skyrocketed. Take a look at Graphic 2 which shows the Consumer Sentiment Index from 1975 to present day. What you see is that the housing market tracks very closely to consumer confidence. Up to 2007 consumer confidence was very high but plummeted between 2007 and 2010, dragging the housing market down with it. It bottomed out in 2010 and has been rising ever since, just like our housing market. As long as consumers remain confident, the housing market will continue to rise.
  4. Interest rates. Interest rates remain near all-time lows making metro Denver homes still relatively affordable. Yes, prices have risen a lot the past six years but since interest rates are so low, buyer's monthly mortgage payments remain affordable, especially compared to rents.
  5. Rents. Because rents continue to skyrocket! Every day, more and more renters are realizing it's cheaper for them to buy a home than continue to rent, further increasing the demand for housing purchases.
  6. Employment - Denver was ranked #1 out of the largest 150 cities nationwide by WalletHub.com for employment and earning opportunities. A strong economy further propels our housing market.

 

And these are just a few of the many dynamics that continue to strengthen our market. Feel free to call me if you'd like to discuss what the market's doing, where the market's going, and what you can do to take full advantage of this terrific housing market.  
Index of Consumer Sentiment

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Sept. 15, 2014

Colorado Fall Home Show Visits Mile High City Sept 19-21

kitchenIf you want to get a jump-start on remodeling your home to prepare it for a sale in the spring or if you’re more interested in updating your current forever home, all of the experts and resources you need to tackle this season’s remodeling projects will be under one roof at the Colorado Fall Home Show. Running September 19-21 at the Colorado Convention Center, 700 14th Street Denver, CO 80202, hundreds of home remodeling experts will be on hand to help guide you through the often overwhelming process of remodeling or updating your home.

Get a Head Start on Your Remodeling Project with Free Interior Designer Advice

In addition to being able to see and touch the latest materials and products available for your remodeling project, as well as having the opportunity to talk with professionals from various categories of remodeling expertise, the show also will feature free interior designer seminars during the three-day event from the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) Colorado. The seminar topics will run the gamut with kitchen design, remodeling and accessorizing ideas to providing advice on architecture, decorating and construction. Some of the free interior designer seminars include:

  • It Costs How Much? 10 Ways to Control Project Costs
  • Five Secrets Designers Use to Accessorize
  • The Color Games: How Color Affects You and Your Mood
  • Kitchen: 10 Steps from a Dream to Reality
  • Smart Home, Smart Homeowner

Hundreds of Exhibitors to Help You Improve Your Home’s Inside and Outside Appeal

If you have definite remodeling projects planned for this fall or if you’re in the beginning stages of deciding which parts of your house it makes the most sense to update for you to enjoy now and for when you’re ready to sell, the Colorado Fall Home Show will be a great event for you to attend. There are currently more than 250 exhibitors confirmed for the event. For complete details about this upcoming event, click here.

Check out video recap of last year's Colorado Fall Home Show:


And, when you’re ready to list your newly updated home this year or in the spring, give the Denver metro area real estate experts at New Era Group a call at 303-991-9878. Experienced agents can help you identify the best areas in your home to update now to give you the most return on your investment when you’re ready to sell!

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Sept. 5, 2014

Quick Tips to Prepare Your Denver Home for the Fall Season

Colorado FallWith cooler temperatures in the Mile High City air and light dustings of snow teasing the Rocky Mountain Peaks, it’s that time of year to prepare your home and your family for the upcoming fall and winter season. By getting everything in order now, you’ll be able to enjoy your home this winter as you start spending more time inside. And, if you plan it just right, you’ll leave some extra time in your schedule to sneak away for a fall foliage road trip to enjoy the beauty of our colorful state as it welcomes the changing of the seasons.

Get Your Indoor Living Space Organized and Cozy

Even though winter is a popular time for Coloradans to get outside to enjoy skiing, snowboarding, sledding and snowshoeing, it still is a season that brings more time spent inside as temperatures and hours of sunlight decline. To keep from catching cabin fever during the long, winter days, spruce up and organize your home’s most used common areas – family room, kitchen, living room, etc. – so the areas are not only functional for your family’s daily needs, but comfortable and inviting.  And, with the school year now in session, it’s also a good time to designate adequate space for your kids to do their homework, work on school projects and just decompress after a long day at school.

Take Care of Outdoor Areas with Fall Clean Up, Maintenance

As gardening season comes to a close and your home’s outdoor vegetation is preparing for its hibernation stage, it’s a good time to cut back plants and trees so their vulnerable branches are prepared to withstand winter’s harsh weather. In preparation for the first freeze of the year, it’s also important to drain water features, hoses and sprinkler systems to minimize possible cracking and damage. To keep rain and snow from seeping into your house after the first storm of the year, checking your roof and gutters for holes and blockages can also be advantageous this time of year too. 

When it comes to outside and inside equipment for your home, it’s time to retire your cooling units for the summer and prepare your heating units for the winter months. If you’ve used an air conditioning system to keep you cool this summer, it’s important to cover it up if it resides outside or disable your window and mobile cooling units. It’s also a good idea to prepare your furnace for the upcoming cold weather now too by changing out filters and servicing your unit so it’s in tip-top shape when you endure the first below freezing winter night. And, if you have a fireplace in your home, make sure to get the chimney cleaned and the unit serviced before lighting your first fire of the season to minimize burning hazards.

Get Out and Enjoy Our Colorful State

With the cold months of winter in your near future, September is one of the best months to get outside in Colorado and enjoy all of the beautiful colors our state is known for. To catch a glimpse of the golden aspens our state is known for, you may need to drive up into the mountains during the earlier part of the month. Trail Ridge Road, the Maroon Bells and the Grand Mesa on the Western Slope are some of the best hot spots for enjoying the Colorado’s gorgeous gold, yellow and red fall colors.  But, if you wait until the later part of the month, you can really enjoy the beauty of our state by simply visiting some of the Denver area’s city and state parks such as Golden Gate Canyon State Park, the Peak-to-Peak Byway and Rocky Mountain National Park. For some fun fall foliage road trip ideas, check out these top 10 scenic areas.

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Aug. 24, 2014

What to do in September in Denver 2014

FAllIt's been a wonderful summer but on September 22nd we celebrate the First Day of Autumn and the Autumnal Equinox.   Here is our roundup of the very best things to do in September!

A Taste of Colorado (August 29th - September 1st)

A Taste of Colorado stands proud as the end-of-summer celebration of community pride and spirit in the Denver region. Come enjoy the offerings of over 50 area food establishments, 280 marketplace artisans and vendors, six entertainment stages, and educational programs promoting the diverse cultural and western heritage of the region - all for no admission fee. Check out all the details here.

2014 BMW Championship (September 1st-7th)

The BMW Championship comes to historic Cherry Hills Country Club from September 1-7, 2014. Join the top 70 players in the world as they compete in the penultimate event of the PGA TOUR's FedExCup Playoffs, held in the Rocky Mountain state for the first time. All proceeds from the BMW Championship benefit the Evans Scholars Foundation, which provides full tuition and housing scholarships to deserving caddies of limited financial means across the country.  Learn all the fun details here.

Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity  (Now - October 9th)

There's a place from which nothing escapes, not even light, where time and space literally come to end. It's at this point, inside this fantastic riddle, that black holes exert their sway over the cosmos ... and our imaginations. In this Museum-produced show, zip through other-worldly wormholes, experience the creation of the Milky Way Galaxy, and witness the violent death of a star and subsequent birth of a black hole.   Visit the official website here.

Denver Broncos! (September 7th and 14th)

Make sure to visit the Denver Broncos website to get all the latest news and events about our home team! There are 2 games at the Sports Authority Field at Mile High in September. Get your tickets today!

Pippin - Denver Performing Arts Center (September 6th - 20th)

Pippin is Broadway's high-flying, death-defying hit musical! Full of extraordinary acrobatics, wondrous magical feats and soaring songs from the composer of Wicked, Pippin will lift you up and leave you smiling. This unforgettable new production is the winner of four 2013 Tony Awards® including Best Musical Revival.  Get more information here.

Colorado Rockies Fireworks Game (September 19th)

Rockies fireworks are the best and biggest fireworks in town! Catch the summer fireworks and end-of-season September spectacular! These games sell out fast, so get your tickets today! Click here to buy tickets.

Oktoberfest in Denver (September 19th-21st & 26th-28th)

The Denver Oktoberfest attracts over 350,000 people during the six-day festival and it was quoted in Maxim Magazine and USA Today as "The Best Oktoberfest" in the United States and "One of the country's biggest and longest running traditions. Click here for the schedule of events!

Colorado Symphony 5K Run/Walk (September 20th) 

"Leave your headphones at home and help the Colorado Symphony kick off its 2014/15 concert season by participating in the Colorado Symphony 5K Run/Walk. Put a team together; bring your family, friends and pets; and join us for a fun-filled event featuring live music along the course".  Learn more details here.

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Aug. 23, 2014

August 2014 Market Happenings

As a reader of our market happenings (thank you!) you know that my company is the leading resource for information, data, and statistics on the metro Denver real estate market. Every month I get the opportunity to leverage this data to give you the information you need to better understand our always-interesting, ever-changing housing market. This month I’d like to introduce to you the leader in research of the national real estate market because I think that understanding the broader national picture might help you even better understand our local market. There’s nothing like perspective to help us learn more about our market.

The leading national real estate research resource is the Case-Schiller index, which releases monthly real estate data on the top 20 cities in the country. It compares how the market in each city has done over time as well as contrasting one city versus another. The index is compiled by comparing matched-price pairs for thousands of single-family homes in each market. Prices are for resales of stand-alone single-family homes only, not for new construction or condominiums. Case-Shiller numbers for metro Denver cover a 10-county area: Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Clear Creek, Denver, Douglas, Elbert, Gilpin, Jefferson and Park counties.

So let’s look at how the national real estate market is looking and how the metro Denver market compares to its peer cities around the country.

Chart 1 depicts the nation’s 10-City and 20-City Composite Home Price Indices. In May 2014, the 10-City and 20-City Composites posted very strong year-over-year increases of 9.4% and 9.3%, respectively. Incredibly, there were no year-over-year declines among the 20 cities; the smallest gains were in Cleveland (up 2.4 percent) and Charlotte (up 4.7percent).

How does this compare to Denver? For a third straight month, Denver-area home-resale prices set a new all-time high in May, with average prices up 8.2 percent from a year earlier. Strong price increases in metro Denver? Yes. Still a seller’s market? Sure. But what you see is that our market is simply in line with the rest of the country, even a little bit below the national average. This perspective is critical. We sometimes get so caught up in our own market stats and drama that we forget to see the bigger picture which is that the country as a whole is going through a very strong housing rebound and Denver is simply keeping pace with it.

In other words, what we’re going through is anything but unusual; in fact, it’s the norm around the country! Chart 1 shows that the national real estate market started rising in price in 2010 (ours began rising in 2009), dipped a little in 2012, and has been on a tear ever since. Overall, the Denver market has done a little better than the national average over the past 5 years, but pegs pretty close to it. As a real estate professional hoping for a strong, steady, reasonably predictable market I find that very comforting.

Here’s another way of looking at the numbers. Chart 2 shows the index levels for the 10-City and 20-City Composite Indices. The year 2000 is the baseline, with national prices for that year assigned the number 100. As of May 2014, average home prices across the United States are back to their summer 2004 levels, with the 20-city composite price of 171 (meaning the prices rose from 2000 – 2014 by 71 percent on average around the country). Measured from their June/July 2006 peaks, the peak-to-current decline for both Composites is approximately 17-18 percent. The recovery from the March 2012 lows is 26.5% and 27.3% for the 10-City and 20-City Composites.

Interestingly, Denver’s average price gain is only 52.58 percent since 2000. So, while the real estate market for the country’s largest 20 cities has increased 71 percent since 2000 Denver has gone up only about 53 percent. Surprisingly, we lag the national average! This is one of the many reasons why I believe our bull market will continue for a while yet, at least a few more years. Sooner or later it will begin to slow as more inventory comes on the market. But we still have a way to go in this run up, since the national market is ahead of ours by over almost 20 percent.

Here are the Case-Schiller composite metro Denver figures for the past 4 years:

  • May 2014: Up 8.2 percent, index 152.58.
  • November 2013: Up 8.9 percent, index 146.45.
  • May 2013: Up 9.7 percent, index 140.98.
  • November 2012: Up 7.8 percent, index 134.5.
  • May 2012: Up 3.7 percent, index 128.48.
  • November 2011: Down 0.2 percent, index 124.79.
  • May 2011: Down 3.3 percent, index 123.94.
  • November 2010: Down 2.5 percent, index 125.02.


Chart 3 shows the data for the 20 largest cities in the country. As you can see, Denver is up 8.2%. in the past year. Good stuff, but not be any means extraordinary. In fact, the prices in 13 other cities have risen faster than ours in the past year! If I were in Las Vegas, or San Francisco, or Miami I might be somewhat nervous of an overheated market. But Denver? I see nothing today or on the near-term horizon that makes me overly concerned. What we have is a solid, healthy real estate market. Good stuff, indeed!

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Aug. 14, 2014

Finish Off Summer Break Strong with a Denver-Area Staycation Outdoor Adventure

red rocksSummer may be officially winding down, but the beauty of Colorado is that there are many parks and scenic destinations that you can visit that are close to home, but still worth the adventure. Even within the Denver metro area, the Denver Mountain Parks System is home to some major national landscapes that visitors from all over the state and country travel to each year. Finish off your summer adventures by becoming a tourist in your own backyard and visiting some of the following Mile High City must-see Mountain Park attractions.

Genesee Mountain Park Offers Traditional Multi-Use Appeal

One of the first adopted parks by the Denver Mountain Parks System dating back to 1913 and the largest park in the system measuring at 2,413 acres, Genesee Park is perfectly nestled in the foothills between the Denver metro area and the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Offering many different outdoor activities and viewing possibilities, Genesee Park is home to one of the most popular buffalo herds in the state, offers access to miles of popular Front Range day hikes and even provides various overnight tent or RV camping options. Whether you’re looking for a perfect mountain picnicking area or an extended overnight trip to explore the tip of the Colorado Rockies, Genesee Park is an excellent place for families and friends to get out of the city and enjoy the fresh Colorado mountain air while soaking in panoramic views of the city and mountains.

Echo Lake Mountain Park Combines the Beauty of Rugged Peaks and Rocky Mountain Natural Water

If you’re looking to enjoy the beauty of the rugged Rocky Mountains and the tranquility of the open water, then Echo Lake Mountain Park is a destination that you won’t want to miss this summer. Located at 10,600 feet at the base of Goliath Peak, the natural water of Echo Lake offers rare and globally vulnerable subalpine plants for nature enthusiasts, alpine fishing opportunities for anglers and spectacular views of Mt. Evans – one of Colorado’s most popular 14ers.

Red Rocks Mountain Park Recognized Nationally by Outdoor and Entertainment Enthusiasts

Red Rocks is widely known as one of the greatest outdoor concert and event venues in the world. But, when artists aren’t performing to sell-out crowds, this fairly close in distance Denver-area mountain park offers so much more to outdoor enthusiasts, photographers, fitness-minded individuals and tourists. Boasting massive red rock formations, panoramic views of the city, access to various hiking trails and over 300 stairs for avid exercisers to run up and down, Red Rocks Mountain Park is one of the best metropolitan Mountain parks in the country. And, it’s only a 20-minute drive from Downtown Denver!

For detailed information on all of the 13 parks that are included in the Denver Mountain Park System, click here.

Close out the summer with family and friends in true Colorado style by being adventurous and visiting the beautiful outdoor attractions around the Mile High City. During your travels, if you find a new area of the city that you’d like to call home, give the Denver metro area real estate experts at New Era Group a call. They can help you find the best Denver home to meet your family’s needs that’s within close proximity to your favorite Denver Mountain Park.

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Aug. 1, 2014

Discovering the Riches at the Denver Mint

“Money doesn’t grow on trees.” How many parents over the years have uttered those words? The chances are most parents don’t know where money does come from? If you don’t, the likelihood is that your children don’t either. The truth is much of it comes from here in Denver at the Denver Mint. A mainstay since the days of the gold and silver rush and the founding of Denver itself, this incredible facility not only makes coins but offers a wonderful day trip for children of all ages to learn something new in an exciting environment.

That’s a lot of Money!

The current Denver Mint facility went into operation in 1906, and produced 167,371,035 silver and gold coins in its first year. That’s over $27,000,000. Now they can produce more 50 million coins a day. Even though it is a government office, they offer free, guided tours that last about 45 minutes. These tours are an opportunity to learn about the history of the United States Mint and how the Mint makes coins for all of America. Lest you think the fun only lasts 45 minutes, there is an amazing gift shop so that you and your child can bring home a memento of your financial lesson plan.

Plan Ahead for your Visit

Denver MintThough the Denver Mint is family friendly, there are some regulations that need to be followed to ensure the safety of all the visitors. This is not an impromptu trip. Reservations are required, and you will be asked to show your confirmation number in order to enter to tours. Space is limited, and the spots fill up quickly, so make your reservations soon!

Handbags and strollers aren’t permitted, but children under 7 probably won’t be able to fully enjoy the tour anyway. For safety purposes, food, drinks and weapons are prohibited.  The Denver Mint asks visitors to arrive 30 minutes before your scheduled tour, at the Cherokee entrance. Visitors arriving late will be prohibited from attending. Much like an airport, patrons are asked to walk through a metal detector, so this should be taken into consideration if medical concerns prohibit that in your family.

Taking the Show on the Road

With special arrangements, the Mint can accommodate groups larger than 15. The Denver Mint can also take it on the road. They offer a free speakers bureau that can present on a wide variety of topics to schools, libraries and community groups. Their presentations can be tailored to fit different age groups and abilities or the interests of your specific group. This is a great opportunity to teach kids fiscal responsibility and the work that goes into every dollar and an opportunity to learn more about our city.

Plan your Trip Today

There aren’t a lot of free activities that are both fun and educational in the Denver Metro. The Denver Mint is one of those activities. Granted, there are a few rules to abide by to ensure the safety of all patrons, but it is a small price to pay for the opportunity to learn about the value of money and the value of the people who make it. With a central location on Colfax, the Denver Mint is a must see Denver attraction. For more information about great things to do in the Denver Metro please visit our Denver Entertainment Guide.

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