24 hrs in San Diego

I’ve been in San Diego since 11 pm pacific time yesterday, 2/26/2014.  For the first time, I experienced the rain there which was a pleasant mist. Check out the shots I took below before moseying on back to the airport to fly home to Denver – a storm is a’brewin’!

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Boats hangin’ and rockin’, waiting for better weather. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

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No room at the inn. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

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Storm’s coming! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

Until next time, San Diego…

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The Oriental Opry – From Coffeehouse to The Big House

Genuine. Organic.  Vintage. Authentic.

These are just a few words that hit the nail on the head when discussing the Oriental Opry, an event held at The Oriental Theater the second Tuesday of each month. Two Sundays ago, I met with Jane Manly and Joe Kellogg, the master-minds behind this great event that aims to strengthen the community through musicianship. After witnessing two captivating Oprys, I had to get the behind-the-scenes-scoop!

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Jane Manly and Joe Kellogg, organizers of The Oriental Opry. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

So how did The Opry start? The event actually stems from weekly jam sessions out of musician and friend, Rick Franz’s, garage. Jam sessions grouped with (Jane Manly and her friend, Vince Leclair’s,) suggestion of the band Dirt Simple taking the big stage at the Oriental Theater, and BOOM! The Oriental Opry was born last June 2013.

A variety show, The Oriental Opry aims to provide a variety of acts, currently consisting mostly of folk, blue grass, jazz and blues music. Coming up, Jane, the producer and organizer, is working on integrating other community acts, including magic and performances by kids in the community.

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Shots from the first Oriental Opry that DenverSpeax attended in January 2014 – we were instantly hooked! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Jan 2014

What makes The Oriental Opry so unique and special is that it’s “all about putting local musicians on the stage to create community; it’s about bringing people together”, Joe said best. Musicians reinforce this sense of community and camaraderie  by collaborating with each other on stage- many times without sheet music, simply supporting their fellow musicians. The musicians, Jane, and Joe rely heavily on word-of-mouth advertising for the Oriental Opry each month. No one participates in this event for the money – performers trust Jane’s producing skills and Joe as the MC, while musicians and viewers alike understand the mission behind The Oriental Opry.

Jane and Joe have created a supportive environment allowing musicians an opportunity to make the move from playing at the coffee house to performing in the big house. “The Oriental Opry allows musicians that are isolated to come together and collaborate”, explained the two, continuously stressing the importance of the community the event creates. Additionally, they described the amazing support they receive for the event from Oriental Theater owners Scott LaBarbera and Andy Bercaw. Lots of love toward them as well as Lara Moore for all of their assistance and belief in this fantastic event.

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Jeffrey Dallet and band at the February 12th, 2014 Oriental Opry event. See more photos by clicking on pic and visiting our Facebook page! Credit: Steve Mercer, Feb 2014.

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Nearly There jamming at the Opry! Credit: Steve Mercer, Feb 2014

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Come check out the talented musicians at the Oriental Opry – check them out by clicking on the pic above to be brought to their Facebook page. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

Once you experience this show, it will be easy to understand and feel a necessity to share in the mission; it’s not just another event – it’s a great time with some of the most talented musicians DenverSpeax has ever heard. They have a knack for entertainment, allowing you to forget to check the time on your watch and how many likes you got on your Facebook selfie that evening. The sounds are creative and captivating, all while giving you a sense of inclusion into The Opry’s community.

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Check out The Oriental Opry every 2nd Tuesday of every month at The Oriental Theater. March 11th, 2014, is the next Oriental Opry – don’t miss it!

For information on playing in the Oriental Opry, please contact Jane Manly for additional information via the Oriental Opry’s Facebook Page.

Had a Blast at Keystone Resorts and Dillon, CO

This past weekend, we stayed in a condo in Dillon, CO, just 10 minutes away from Keystone Resorts. It cost us less than $600 for a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom condo with a deck, woodburning stove, and wifi equipped condo. Check out VRBO for great deals during ski season.

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The snow was great for playing in!

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Amazing views at Keystone!
20140224-092515.jpg the view from the condo was also great – nice to be out of the resort town.

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Even our drive home yesterday morning was incredible – the weather changed so often that it was hard to keep up!

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There’s still plenty of time left in the season – make sure you get out there and check out Keystone Resorts and other neighboring mountains. Don’t ski or snowboard? No worries – other activities are also available! Snowshoeing, cross- country skiing, tubing, hiking… Get outside!

Exploring the Highlands – Seafood Landing

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Seafood Landing has a great selection of seafood, and is located right in the heart of the Highlands on 32nd Ave. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

Remember a few months back when we explored The Highlands and visited places like Vert Beauty & The Matador? We also visited this fantastic seafood shop located at 3457 W. 32nd Ave called Seafood Landing. Open since 1974, the staff over at Seafood Landing really know their stuff, and carry an incredible selection. With the help of Seafood Landing, we can now make a May 2014 Crawfish Boil actually happen right here in DENVER!

When speaking with the staff, we learned that the original owners of Seafood Landing actually brought seafood to Colorado about 25 years ago – we’d say that’s quite the incredible feat, and deserves to be recognized.

Seafood Landing not only sells a great variety, they also have spices, cookbooks, and other novelties to help you do it right – this is definitely a plus! Not sure what spice or recipe to follow for your purchase? Ask them! They’re happy to help make your experience enjoyable in any way possible.

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We are big fans of the spices on display in this fisheye pic! Check out their marinades and spices to keep your seafood delicious and exciting. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

The Omega-3 found in fish oil is fantastic for your health! Looking to lower blood pressure and help out your heart? Fish! Trying to figure out a way to burn fat faster? Pick a day or two of the week and eat fish instead of red meat as your protein. The benefits are plenty – good thing we have Seafood Landing to help us out! Stop in and say hi – check them out and support local business that supports your health.

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Support the Boys and Girls Club of Metro Denver at Crossfit DeCO!

This weekend, February 23rd, 2014, CrossfitDeCO and the Boys and Girls Club of Metro Denver are teaming up to hold a fundraiser to sponsor student athletes.

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Thanks to CrossfitDeCO for posting this awesome photo for the fundraiser – click on the photo to be re-directed to their site for more information on the event and how you can help. Credit: CrossfitDeCO, Feb 2014

Stop in at CrossfitDeCO from noon to 2 pm this Sunday to see how you can help a student with an 8 week Crossfit membership. No donation is too small, and this is a great way to get kids active in the Denver area. Don’t believe us? No worries – there will be a sample workout performed to make you a believer. Note that while childhood obesity is increasing in awareness, Colorado’s childhood obesity rate continues to increase, per the Denver Post.  What a great fundraiser to help out with this issue!

Check out CrossfitDeCO’s Official site for more information.
Like CrossfitDeCO on Facebook! DenverSpeax, too!

Fighting Diseases in Your Unmentionables

What a great event for Neurofibromatosis! We’re sorry we missed this one, but look forward to joining the cause and running in our undies next year.

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People’s chonies, panties, underwear, boxers, tighty-whiteys, banana hammocks, grape smugglers, skivvies, nut huts, butt huggers, and “da dunt da dunts” were all out in the open during Denver’s Third Annual Cupid’s Undie Run.
They bare all for the cause of raising money for research to combat Neurofibromatosis, a painful and debilitating genetic disorder that causes tumors to grow on nerves throughout the body. These tumors can create learning disabilities, blindness, deafness, and chronic pain. There is no known cure.
NF affects roughly 1:3,000 births in the U.S. and is in desperate need of new discovery, which is why 100% of funds raised through Cupid’s Undie Run go directly to the Children’s Tumor Foundation.

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Morning photo: Snow daze …

Beautiful shot from Frisco – who’s headed up to shred today?! There’s much powder to look forward to. Be safe and have a great time!
Check out Summit County Citizens Voice blog by clicking on the picture.

Summit County Citizens Voice

It just keeps on coming

FRISCO —It just keeps getting deeper in Summit County, with the latest round of snow fueled by an atmospheric river — sometimes called a pineapple connection — tapping subtropical Pacific moisture from beyond Hawaii. For us in the Colorado high country it translates to snow, snow and more snow. January will go down as the third-wettest on record in Breckenridge, and the first week of February has already brought a month’s worth of snow to the area, with more moisture on the way. There’s really only one thing to do when it’s like this — get out and revel while you can!

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The Oriental Theater: A Tennyson Staple

Here’s a place we feel doesn’t get nearly enough credit for the incredible acts and fantastic shows put on: The Oriental Theater.

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The Oriental Opry, Jan 14th, 2014. Top: the Oriental Theater’s marquee. Bottom: Friends jamming at the Oriental Opry. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Jan 2014

Located at 44th and Tennyson in Denver, CO, sits this intimate venue, boasting performances by such greats as Leon Russell. The charming, vintage environment enhances the experience – the murals, grand stage, lush curtains, and statuesque balcony come together to form a bold statement about the place – it’s a staple within the community.

Our first visit to the Oriental Theater was to experience the Oriental Opry – a night chocked full of groups of friends performing various blues, bluegrass, and jazz tunes, both original and recreated. Because of the close-knit community and camaraderie of the musicians that grace the stage at the Oriental Theater, we immediately felt at home.

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Mike & Moses playing a slow, jazz number. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Jan 2014

The Oriental Theater also hosts other events aside from live music; comics grace the presence of the stage, as well as this past Superbowl 48 game! Upcoming, Oriental Theater will host Masters of the Brewniverse this Thursday, February 13th. 15 breweries will provide unlimited tastings and participate in a beer pageant (yes, a pageant). $25 scores you unlimited craft brew samples and admission to watch the competition. Even COOLER – 100% of the profits go toward the Mile High United Way.

For more great events, check out the schedule here on the Oriental Theater’s official website. Ticket prices are extremely reasonable, the staff are kind and knowledgable, and the experience surely memorable.

We will see you all at Masters of the Brewniverse this Thursday!

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