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|December 4-10, 2008
• A guide to giving green
Experience the holidays
When we look back on our favorite holiday memories, it’s not just about the shaking of boxes and the rapid ripping of wrapping paper. It’s also the remembrance of sledding down a hill on an inner tube way too fast, or that family meal where everyone broke out in laughter over conversation. So when considering what to get for your loved ones this year, think about what will leave a long-lasting impression. Sometimes the best (and most eco-friendly) gifts are experiences, not just tangible items. Rather than contribute to the annually generated holiday waste (about 4 million tons of wrapping paper end up in the trash each winter), make some memories. We’ve compiled a few suggestions to help treat the one on your list.
Concert tickets are a great way of giving the gift of experience while also supporting local venues and your favorite artists. The combination of the right crowd and the right sounds will make any show something to reminisce about for years to come. With such a wide range of local establishments, you’re sure to find something for every type of music lover on your list. Here are some of our favorite music venues, all of which maintain a website with a calendar of upcoming musical acts:
Boulder Theater, www.bouldertheater.com, 303-786-7030. Upcoming recommended shows: Rose Hill Drive (local rock) performing Led Zeppelin on Dec. 30 and 31 and Ladysmith Black Mambazo (South African a cappella) on March 4.
Fox Theatre, www.foxtheatre.com, 303-443-3399. Upcoming recommended shows: The Wailers (reggae groundbreakers) performing Exodus on Jan. 10 and Reverend Horton Heat (rockabilly rocker) with Slim Cessna’s Auto Club (Denver-based Americana) on Feb 3.
Other local venues: Nissi’s (www.nissis.com, 303-665-2757, in Lafayette); Rock N Soul Café (www.rocknsoulcafe.com, 303-443-5108); Oskar Blues (www.oskarblues.com, 303-823-6685); St. Julien Hotel & Spa (www.stjulien.com, 720-406-9696); Boulder Outlook Hotel (www.boulderoutlook.com, 303-443-3322).
Despite all the good times and warm cheers, the holidays have been known to be a bit stress-inducing. Traveling, cooking, cleaning, shopping — all of it takes its toll on our bodies. To help relieve some of the stress, give the gift of the body rub. Here are a few of our favorite picks:
Finishing Touch Spa & Salon (www.finishtouchspa.com, 303-449-1852): Finishing Touch’s Caribbean theme means you can escape to sandy beaches — if only for a few hours. They are a full-service spa, and offer spa packages and gift certificates.
On Broadway (www.boulderspa.com, 303-444-0330): On Broadway soothes by taking you on a trip through the park, with surroundings that include beautiful sculpture gardens. Their spa services include massage, herbal wraps, salt glows and facials. Packages and gift certificates are available.
Whole Body Balance (www.wholebodybalance.com, 303-444-0192): Whatever kind of massage you’re into, Whole Body Balance has got it. From Swedish to deep tissue to hot stone, there is something to relax even the most frazzled member of the family.
Other local massage spots: Essentiels Spa (www.halcyondayssalonandspas.com, 303-440-0711); Marianna L’Esthetique Day Spa (www.mariannaskincare.com, 33-415-0959); Sensorielle (www.sensoriellespa.com, 303-247-9937); Wildflowers Salon & Spa (www.wildflowersspa.com, 303-444-4234); Tapestry Salon & Day Spa (tapestry-dayspa.com, 303-444-1294); Santé Day Spa (www.santedayspa.org, 303-530-7272).
We hibernate enough as it is in the winter. This season, take the family outside for a gift. Here are many ways to enjoy the Great Outdoors and breathe in that fresh holiday cheer:
The Ice Rink at One Boulder Plaza (www.bouldericerink.com, 303-209-3722): Whether you’re an awkward shuffler or suave glider, outdoor ice skating is one of the most enjoyable and memorable winter events. The Ice Rink has several December specials and events for adults and children, not to mention lessons and skate rentals. They are also centrally located for a downtown stop on the ice.
Sleigh rides (www.sombrero.com, 970-887-1999): What’s more seasonal than a sleigh ride? Just up the road near Granby, Sombrero Ranches offers dashing sleigh rides that take you on a peaceful trip through the snow with hot cocoa, cider and bonfires. For those looking for a more romantic time, they also offer a night ride followed by an intimate dinner in their cozy dining hall.
A couple other suggestions
Trips to an art gallery: Take the artists in the family to the versatile and non-profit Dairy Center for the Arts (www.thedairy.org, 303-440-7826) or our local fave, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art (www.bmoca.org, 303-443-2122) for an education holiday gift.
Eat your heart out: There are hundreds of amazing, local restaurants in Boulder County. Support them and your loved one’s stomach by purchasing a gift certificate to any one of them as a holiday gift. For a list of local restaurants by food style, visit www.boulderweekly.com.
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