Alchemists make brew from weed |

Alchemists make brew from weed

April E. Clark
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
April in Glenwood

I’m the type who loves to celebrate. Birthday soirees, art openings, wedding receptions, text message success …

I’ve even been to a funeral that turned into a party.

Someone somewhere once said, “Life is too short not to celebrate.” I know someone said it because it’s all over the Internet, including a few yoga websites. The author appears to be unknown, but I won’t take credit for it.

I will claim, “Life is too short not to make home videos based on the 1991 hit ‘I Wanna Sex You Up’ by Color Me Badd,” as my own, though.

Without celebrating, I imagine the world would be a dark, creepy, uneventful place. Like my version of Hell, without the fire, brimstone and red-faced jerk. In this place, no one laughs, smiles or snaps embarrassing self-portraits to post on Facebook. People don’t eat cake with their fingers or craft cheese balls out of aged cheese and crumbled nuts. There’s no pinning tails on donkeys. Or wearing of bridal veils and pinning of condoms to bachelorettes’ oversized T-shirts.

Support Local Journalism

And there’s certainly no booze made from a weed.

That kind of place – where dandelions make for a tasty brew – also celebrates the potato and a big mountain called Sopris. There probably aren’t not too many places in the world where celebrating a weed is as expected as octopi at a Red Wings game.

The mountain towns of Colorado, from plain to pretentious, know how to throw a party. Since moving here I’ve celebrated rafting, kayaking, strawberries, bluegrass, bicycles, comedy, summer, jazz, microbrews, rock, rodeo, Labor Day, movies, short movies, a mountain, food, wine, potatoes and art.

And several others I cannot recall at this time.

This weekend, in Carbondale, it’s all about the town’s favorite queen weed. Here she is, Miss Dandelion.

Her stunning wardrobe – strictly limited to yellow, green, and, at the end of the season, white – is great worn anywhere from the badminton court to the putt-putt golf course. But like every Ken who falls for Barbie and her tiny feet and lack of cankles, this is one noxious weed, man.

Miss Dandelion is scandalous, but in a nice-Midwesterner kind of way. She enjoys camping, late-night pub-crawls, spreading her seed through the wind, long walks on the beach, growing really, really fast, and withstanding drought.

So this is what the fuss is all about.

Best of all, dandelions can be made into beer. And no Colorado festival, or most any festival since I can remember, celebrates without beer. At some pre-Prohibition point in history, I wonder if it was considered unconstitutional to have a festival without beer.

You know pirates wouldn’t be who they are today if it weren’t for ale and pillaging parties. People certainly wouldn’t be dressing up like them at birthday parties. Or recreating that look because they like parrots hanging out on their shoulders and the feel of a silk scarf tied snugly around the forehead. And the single gold earring.

Which totally turned out to be a thing in the 1980s.

Dandelion Day isn’t all about the beer, although I like the invention and think it’s as genius as the Reef sandal with the built-in bottle opener in the sole. This festival, and those on their way as summer returns to the valley, features live music and entertainment. Think funky rock, bluegrass and Americana – Norman Rockwell meets a Jerry Garcia tie design painting – for an afternoon of Colorado in the springtime.

If that didn’t convince, did I mention beer is sometimes made with dandelions?

Cause for celebration.

April E. Clark is looking forward to hosting the party Saturday in Sopris Park. She can be reached at aprilelizabethclark@

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User