Editorials, Batholith, Licenses, Open Space, and More

June 18, 2019

Dear Readers: I’ve been thinking of starting a guest editorial or letters to the editor section. I suggest this with some trepidation, because I don’t want incoherent rants…we already have Nextdoor for that. I want to provide a place where people can write clear, well-thought-out statements on Golden-related topics. Would you like that? Would you want to submit letters/editorials? Let me know.

The Friends of the Geology Museum will host ED Talks today and next Tues, June 25th, from 11:30-12:30. The topic is the world-famous Pikes Peak Batholith. Ed will cover Colorado Precambrian today and Pegmatites next Tuesday. The talks take place in the conference room across the hall from the Museum. Brown bag lunches are welcome.

The Library will host a program at 1PM – MUFON: UFOs in America. Presidents, astronauts and astronomers are some of the people who’ve seen and believe in UFOs. Learn why UFOs continue to be a hot topic in America. Suitable for: Adults

The Local Licensing Authority meets at 2:30 this afternoon in City Council Chambers. Rocky Mountain Organic Medicine (medical marijuana business located at 511 Orchard St) is scheduled to renew their license. In order to do so, they must show the judge that they have renewed their lease. Canyon Point Wine & Spirits (103 N. Rubey), 7-Eleven (399 N. Washington), Anthony’s Pizza (600 12th St.), and Indulge (1299 Washington Ave.) are also renewing their licenses. They will also hold a hearing with Walgreens regarding sales of tobacco products.

The Golden Urban Renewal Authority and Downtown Development Authority are holding a joint open house from 6-7:30 at the Community Center (map). They want to consult the public concerning changes they’re considering funding. This open house will be of particular interest to you if you live or own property in their districts (downtown, 8th Street, West Colfax, or the area around Natural Grocers). Do you want street updates? Workforce housing? Public Art? A bandshell in Parfet Park? What do you think they should do with the Astor House?

The Parks, Recreation, & Museums Commission will meet at 7PM in Council Chambers. They will hear a presentation about the proposed sale of the Astor House to the owners of the Dove Inn. A new group called Stewards of Golden Open Space will introduce themselves and explain their mission. The Commission will also discuss “Hard Surface Court Lining Discussion.” I’m not sure what courts they’re discussing, and can find no explanation in the meeting packet.

Live Music in Golden Colorado

Night Life:
Ace Hi Tavern – Trivia Night starts at 7PM
Dirty Dogs Roadhouse – Karaoke, 7-11PM
Buffalo Rose – Zakk Debono and the Broken Circle at 7PM, Vanessa Collier at 8:10PM

Wednesday Preview:
7:30AM – Citizens Budget Advisory Committee
6:30PM – Planning Commission Study Session (ADU Expansion and Household Definition)
5-9PM – Pint Night at Mountain Toad Brewing benefiting the Colorado Avalanche Information Center.
6-9PM Fly-Tying at Mountain Toad with Golden River Sports

Funding the Symphony and Selling the Astor House

June 17, 2019

The Downtown Development Authority will meet in City Council Chambers at 6:30. They will consider a grant request from the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra to help pay the costs associated with their free summer concert in Parfet Park. The Symphony is requesting $4900 to defray the $8560 cost of presenting the concert. According to the meeting memo, “The Grants Committee was divided on the application. One member is not in favor due to the repetitive nature of this request and because the City’s Special Events Committee offered some relief for Parfet Park fees. Another member supported the application as JSO is still actively pursuing other funding avenues.”

The DDA’s grant application form states that “The DDA does not intend to become a regular, anticipated funding partner with any organization. We hope that our limited funding will enable worthwhile organizations to establish permanent funding sources; rise to new levels of service; meet an urgent need or take advantage of a unique opportunity. Likewise, if we can help build a small or large improvement that will last for many years and contribute to life in Golden we are interested in making one-time or occasional contributions.”

Of course, it’s hard to find other funding sources for a free event, and it would be hard to point to a more appropriate funder than the Downtown Development Authority. According to their web page, their grants are intended “… to help businesses thrive, enhance arts and culture opportunities, and make downtown a wonderful place to visit.”

They will also hear a report about the Astor House. The committee that has been reviewing proposals recommends that the City sell the building to the owners of the Dove Inn. For details, review the meeting packet or watch the meeting….

Tonight’s 6PM lecture at the History Museum, Western Women through American Art, is sold out for members, but $10 tickets are still available for non-members. Museum members might want to call, to see if there have been any cancellations: 303-278-3557.

The Library will have Story Time Under the Stars from 7-7:30 this evening. It’s a special starry night Story Time for all ages. The lights dim as we read about the moon and stars and get ready for bed. Pajamas, blankies and stuffed animals encouraged. This event is suitable for babies, preschoolers, and toddlers.

New Terrain Brewing will host Fireside Pickers starting at 6PM.
Dirty Dogs Roadhouse will have Open Mic from 6:30-9:30.

Tuesday Preview:
10AM – Director’s Storytime and Craft at the Railroad Museum
11:30AM – ED Talks: Pikes Peak Batholith – Colorado Precambrian at the Geology Museum
1PM – UFOs in America at the Library (adults)
2PM – Local Liquor Licensing Authority
6PM – GURA and DDA Joint Open House
7PM – Parks, Recreation and Museums Advisory Board

More Deaccessioning Planned

March 19, 2019

10AM – Directors Storytime and Craft at the Railroad Museum
6PM – The Golden Library Tuesday Night Book Group will discuss Neverhome by Laird Hunt.

The Local Licensing Authority will meet on today at 2PM in City Council Chambers. Origin Red Rocks Hotel has requested to change the name for “Registered Manager.” The former Maki Sushi & Grill at 1301 Washington, which has changed its name to Okinawa is requesting approval to change the layout of the kitchen and restaurant. See the meeting packet online.

“Upper Washington Avenue Open Space”

The Parks, Recreation, and Museums Advisory Board will meet tonight at 7PM in City Council Chambers. North Neighborhoods resident Tom Schweich will present a survey of condition and plants on a piece of ground informally known as the “Upper Washington Avenue Open Space.” They will also hear an update on the Lubahn Trail and discuss fees and charges for Golden park facilities. See the meeting packet online.

They will also discuss the History Museum’s plan to “deaccession” (sell) 527 items from the City’s collection. (See the list of items slated to be sold.) The items include school desks from the Guy Hill Schoolhouse, furniture from the Astor House, and a diorama built by the WPA for the Museum. The supporting memo from Mark Dodge, Curator, says “with new, non-museum use planned for the AH, I see no strong rational to keep everything.” This might lead many of you to ask

Astor House Interior – Photo courtesy of Richard Gardner’s Historic Golden Colorado Facebook Page

What’s Happening with the Astor House?
The Astor House Museum was closed in 2015 for a structural rehabilitation. While it was closed, museum staff decided to repurpose the museum from serving as a reminder of Golden’s past to being a more general museum of boarding houses in America. They later explored the possibility of using it as a Beer Museum. While the building was closed for rehabilitation, most of the contents of the Astor House Museum were sold. This meant that we could never go back to operating the Museum-that-was.

The structural rehabilitation is done, so the building is now sturdy, but the inside remains gutted and unusable. The Museum staff doesn’t plan to operate it as a museum, and City Council and staff don’t want to pay to finish the building when they don’t know what they’re going to do with it.

Last year, the City released an RFP looking for ideas regarding how to use the Astor House. They received 5 proposals, and a small team has been reviewing them. The process has been conducted in secret; however, the Golden Transcript submitted a Freedom of Information request in February, and published the 5 proposals. The proposals include selling the Astor House to private businesses or leasing it. One proposal details plans for using the building as a museum.

I hadn’t realized that the city still owned any Astor House furniture, but since they now propose to sell it, apparently they do. If you have any thoughts about the deaccessioning plan, you can address the Parks board during public comment at the beginning of the meeting or email citycouncil@cityofgolden.net.