10 Quirky Things To See, Eat, or Do in Denver

Casa Bonita in Denver
The cliff diving scene at Casa Bonita, photo by Maxim B via Flickr

Dating back to the times of the American Old West, the “Mile High City” of Denver  has gone from a conservative cowboy town to a pinnacle of both athletic and artistic culture. From sports fandom, to snowboarding and skiing, to music and art festivals, Denver truly has something for everyone. At Stay Alfred Vacation Rentals, we’re always excited to share our favorite attractions in Denver with our guests. For those who might be interested in the more “off beat” cultural quirks of Denver, this list is for you. Here’s the ten weird things that Stay Alfred loves about Denver, Colorado:

 

  1. The Denver airport is rife with conspiracy theories. If you check out some of the odd art that adorns the walls, it’s not difficult to see why. Denver’s unofficial mascot, a 32 foot slightly creepy and deadly blue mustang greets all who enter the city. Nicknames for the sculpture include “Devil Horse” and “Blucifer” and opinions of the work of art range from embarrassment to adoration. It’s been a controversial piece.
  2. There’s a usable jail cell in Coors Field. Enough said.
  3. Denver has a special museum dedicated to toys and miniatures. This might sound a bit boring at first, but it’s a favorite of both adults and children alike. If you’re a fan of creepy dolls that look like they might come to life in the middle of the night, this is the place for you.
  4. An anonymous group called the Ladies Fancywork Society goes out and secretly “crochet bombs” public works of art, such as the Blue Bear that appears to be pushing the wall of the Colorado Convention Center.
  5. Denver’s food scene definitely has it’s weird spots. One of the most famous ones is Casa Bonita, a Mexican entertainment style restaurant that always leaves customers with divided opinions. After you wait in an awkward line for mediocre Mexican food, you’ll be visually overloaded with an enthusiastic mariachi band, divers jumping from a 30 foot wall, pirates, flame jugglers, gunfights, and the occasional guy in a gorilla suit. We are not making this up. This place is so ridiculous, it even has its own South Park episode. If you choose to brave this gaudy display, we recommend the sopapillas and definitely a margarita.
  6. In case you’re down for something a bit more grim than colorful and wacky Casa Bonita, there’s always Linger Eatuary, a restaurant that used to be Olinger Mortuary. No one in Denver seems to find this weird. The restaurant serves a wide variety of delicious new American food that seems to impress most reviewers. Fans of morbid humor enjoy details such as the embalming fluid glasses and casket advertisements that serve as decor.
  7. A hot dog stand turned restaurant known as Biker Jim’s in Denver is a carnivore’s dream- reindeer, pheasant, wild boar, buffalo, elk, duck, veal, and even rattlesnake. Traveling with a vegetarian? Biker Jim’s also offers an award winning vegan dog.
  8. Do you think rocky mountain oysters are weird? Denver takes this delicacy to a whole new level with Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout by Wynkoop Brewing Company. We’ll spare you the details of how this one is made.
  9. Want to pretend you’re from the 1920’s? Step into William’s and Graham, Denver’s Prohibition era speakeasy. The only problem you might run into is finding it.
  10. With the passing of some controversial laws, there’s no questioning the fact that Denver has become a hubub of diverse opinions. Although you might have to look a bit harder for it, cowboy culture still remains. Many bars and clubs embrace country music and Western style dancing. One of the world’s most famous cowboys, Buffalo Bill, has both his museum and final resting place in Denver. Also, the “Superbowl of Cattle Shows” is held every year at the National Western Complex.