Colorado Inside Out Travels Back in Time for Four Episodes Tonight

Colorado Inside Out, 1951-style.
Travel back in time tonight on Colorado Public Television, which will be reprising four of the Emmy Award-winning Time Machine shows that the crew behind Colorado Inside Out, the Friday night public affairs program, creates every year. The weekly, Friday night CIO usually focuses on current events; these Time Machine shows, under the careful guidance of co-producer and CIO sound designer Larry Patchett, transport the concept back in history.

See also: Sand Creek Massacre -- John Evans Founded DU, But Left a Legacy of Shame

More »

Denver Showed It Had the Light Stuff a Century Ago, With the First Christmas Tree

This has been a tough year for Colorado history, with the state marking the 150th anniversary of the Sand Creek Massacre on November 29 and the hundredth anniversary of the Ludlow Massacre back in April. But not all anniversaries are dark: A century ago, Denver was the first spot in the world to feature outdoor Christmas lights. Or so the story goes -- and this is just the time of year for prettily tied-up tales.

See also: Nativity Scene Protests Are a Denver Tradition -- Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

More »

Sand Creek Massacre: John Evans Founded DU, But He Left a Legacy of Shame

A DU committee found both John Chivington and John Evans culpable for the Sand Creek Massacre.
When you're trying to right a 150-year-old wrong, you do not want to make another mistake. You do not want to add insult to grievous injury. That's why the members of the University of Denver's John Evans Study Committee took such care with their investigation of the connection between John Evans, the territorial governor (and thus Supervisor of Indian Affairs in Colorado) who founded the forerunner to DU, and the Sand Creek Massacre.

See also: A Century and a Half Later, the Wounds of Sand Creek Are Still Fresh

More »

Free & Equal's Third-Party Gubernatorial Debate Doesn't Have Everyone at the Party

Room for Arvada High students, but not Paul Fiorino.
The Colorado gubernatorial debate hosted by the Free & Equal Elections Foundation on October 8 at Infinity Park Events Center in Glendale wasn't all that equal. While the organizers were bemoaning the current two-major-party system and decrying the failure of incumbent governor John Hickenlooper (Democrat) and two-time gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez (Republican) to accept an invitation to participate, there was a cry from the back of the room: "Where's Fiorino?"

See also: Public Enemy, Dynasty and Third-Party Politics in Colorado Campaigns

More »

Colorado Was First State to Legalize Abortion: Why Are We Still Talking About It?

The stunning avalanche of action set in motion by the U.S. Supreme Court's inaction on same-sex marriage last week shows just how quickly this country can change.

So why, nearly fifty years after Colorado became the first state in the union to legalize abortion, have we not put this equally sticky issue to bed? Why are we watching Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez play doctor, telling us that an IUD is abortifacient (when an actual doctor will tell you that while an IUD is a very effective form of birth control, it does not induce abortions) and listening to Senate candidate Cory Gardner, that randy Republican, talk about how he picked up birth-control prescriptions for his wife (not IUDs, clearly...and not that many prescriptions, either, judging by the size of his expanding family) while sidestepping the fact that he's pushed federal Personhood laws?

Has any other issue in this country had such a lengthy labor?

See also: Look Who's Mad at Dick Lamm Now!

More »

The Sand Creek Massacre Is a Textbook Lesson in What Happens When History Is Rewritten

National Parks Service
Living history: The site of the Sand Creek Massacre.
References to the Sand Creek Massacre are everywhere these days, including page 55 of the new AP United States History course, one of the most controversial -- if unread -- documents in Colorado and the focus of the proposed curriculum review committee that a few members of the Jefferson County Public Schools Board of Education would like to start. They'll be discussing that proposal, as well as the temerity of the students who've walked out in protest, at tomorrow night's meeting. Not on their agenda: the dangers of rewriting history.

See also: Our Top Five Jeffco School Board Picks for New Sex Ed and Health Classes

More »

Photos: Our Top Five Jeffco School Board Picks for New Sex Ed and Health Classes

Julie Williams as seen in 7News coverage.
When the Jeffco Public Schools Board of Education meets on Thursday, October 2, it will pick up the hot-potato topic -- the Curriculum Review Committee -- that has inspired student walk-outs across the district, creating an unofficial crash course in civil disobedience in the process. But when new boardmember Julie Williams first proposed creating a curriculum committee last month, she wasn't just taking aim at Advanced Placement U.S. History, with its pesky emphasis on "civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law." She also suggested that the group's initial projects include a review of the "elementary health curriculum."

See also: Read Jeffco Superintendent's Letter to Parents About Students Patriotic History Plan Protest

More »

Sonny Lawson Field Is a Favorite With Michael Hancock -- But You'll Need a Key to the City

Mayor Michael Hancock at Sonny Lawson Field.
The deadline is fast approaching for My Favorite Place in Denver, a program created by the Denver Department of Community Planning and Development that's currently soliciting nominations for favorite places in town from residents and visitors alike. We've already weighed in on our least favorite places and my personal favorite: Confluence Park -- specifically, the spot where the past and present come together with a plaque that quotes from a poem by the late Colorado poet laureate Thomas Hornsby Ferril, "Two Rivers." But we're also partial to Sonny Lawson Field, which has its own literary legacy.

See also: The Homeless Diamond Hits a Homer in Sonny Lawson Park

More »

Sand Creek Massacre: Petition Demands Change at Ghost Town Named for John Chivington

Colonel John Chivington.
On Wednesday, September 24, members of the Sand Creek Massacre Commemoration Commission will head northeast from Eads along Chief White Antelope Way to the banks of Sand Creek, where 150 members of the Arapaho and Cheyenne tribes were killed by volunteers led by Colonel John Chivington on November 29, 1864. Ten miles short of the site, they'll pass through the dusty, emptied-out prairie town of Chivington.

See also: Joe Hutchison, Colorado's New Poet Laureate, Tells the Story of Silas Soule and the Sand Creek Massacre

More »

Here's Why Each New DIA Train Message Costs the City $1,500

Denver International Airport
Don't delay the departure of this train!
UPDATE: The steep price of putting in new airport train messages hasn't stopped Denver from recording two new greetings to kick off 2015. The latest voices of the DIA people mover are new Denver Bronco DeMarcus Ware and pro skier Lindsay Vonn.

For more than a decade, the trains ran on time at Denver International Airport with no more than a few bossy reminders from Pete Smythe and Reynelda Muse that "you are delaying the departure of this train." After those two personalities exited Denver (Smythe to his final reward, Muse to work out of state), their voices were replaced with those of the anonymous Alan Roach and Adele Arakawa. And when then-mayor John Hickenlooper added a welcome message to the mix, he didn't even identify himself -- until a few carpers pointed out that it was silly to have the mayor tell travelers where to pick up their bags without mentioning that he was mayor.

Mayor Michael Hancock has not been nearly as reticent, even though there's a $1,500 charge for each new message.

See also: Seven new DIA train greetings Michael Hancock should record

More »