No. 2 news story of 2011: Glenwood Springs named ‘Most Fun Town’ in U.S. |

No. 2 news story of 2011: Glenwood Springs named ‘Most Fun Town’ in U.S.

Heather McGregor
Post Independent Editor
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
submitted photo

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Road atlas publisher Rand McNally named Glenwood Springs the “Most Fun Town” in the country, following a round of national voting through social media and a cross-country road trip by a mother-daughter review team.

Glenwood Springs is one of five winners in Rand McNally’s “Best Small Towns” competition. They’ll all be featured in the 2013 road atlas, and have already been featured in the travel section of USA Today.

The competition started in the spring when Rand McNally called for people to vote through Facebook for the towns across America that are the most scenic, patriotic, fun, friendliest, or best for food. With 20,000 votes in hand, the atlas publisher chose six finalist towns in each of the five categories.

While Glenwood Springs received a few votes as the most scenic town, it cleaned up in the “most fun” category. And it was the only Colorado community in the whole contest.

Other “most fun” finalists were Vacaville, Calif., Myrtle Beach, S.C., Santa Claus, Ind., Yellow Springs, Ohio, and Sioux City, Iowa.

Because of flooding, Sioux City had to bow out and Park City, Utah, filled its spot, raising the competitive bar with the presence of another Western resort town.

Meanwhile, road trip teams were competing to be selected for five slots to take a cross-country expense-paid trip to visit the finalist towns in each of the five categories.

Juliana Broste, 28, a freelance video journalist and snowboard instructor, and her mom Joan Broste, 62, a retired teacher, both of Littleton, were tapped to tour the “most fun” towns.

Midway through their three-week, 4,500-mile cross-country trip, they spent two and a half days in Glenwood Springs, from July 3-6.

“We barely had time to sleep,” said Juliana.

They went rafting, rode ATVs, paraglided, explored the Glenwood Caverns, took in the Glenwood Vaudeville Revue, watched the fireworks from the Hot Springs Pool, and got their toenails polished magenta and grape at Spa of the Rockies.

Their itinerary was planned in advance by resort publicist Vicky Nash, Glenwood Caverns publicist Mandy Gauldin, and Lindsay Lewis, vice president of tourism marketing at the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association.

The five road trip teams met up in Los Angeles on July 15 to present their findings to a team of judges. “Traveling Jules and Joan,” as they called themselves, described Glenwood Springs as “a mountain of fun and an adventure capital, with endless ways to get your adrenaline pumping.”

On July 21, Rand McNally announced the winners and made it official – in case we didn’t know it already.

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