Ringing in the new year in Denver | PostIndependent.com

Ringing in the new year in Denver

Mike Bennett
Staff Photo |

Last week at this time I was recuperating from a fantastic New Year’s Eve celebration.

Today I am recuperating from the flu.

What a difference a week makes.

A close friend and I decided to brave the crowds this year on the 16th Street Mall in Denver.

I used to watch the crowds on TV in Times Square.

Crazy people, I thought. What would possess someone to be out in that mess?

I learned why. The electricity of ringing in the New Year is truly exhilarating.

I can’t really put my finger on it, but my guess is it was the energy provided by tens of thousands of people all having fun with grand hopes and dreams for the upcoming year.

Beyond all of the happy people and awesome fireworks was the aroma of marijuana in the air.

Not since I was at a Grateful Dead concert in Philly in 1974 had I seen that many people in public smoking pot.

“Was this all medical marijuana?” I thought to myself.

These people all seemed healthy.

Even though recreational and medical pot were legal on Dec. 31, you still can’t smoke either publicly, right?

Yeah, right.

The Denver police were out in full force yet the marijuana was ignored.

I am not a prude, but I found it interesting how our government must have just figured that whether they were high or drunk the crowd was civil, and they just left them alone.

That’s a whole story in itself.

If you haven’t been to downtown Denver to celebrate the new year this homebody highly recommends the experience.

As we are firmly in the new year, we are planning some fun contests. Our first will be for Valentine’s Day, which is about a month away.

Can you believe that?

To work, this will require audience participation.

You don’t have to look too hard to find love in the air in Garfield County. We want you to help us share the love.

By Monday, if not sooner, we will have a link on both our website and our Facebook fan page for you to write your story in 500 words or less.

There will be prizes for the best stories and our favorites will run in the print edition of the PI on Feb. 6.

You will also be asked to vote for your favorites.

More details will be provided soon.

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Editor’s note: The Post Independent, in conjunction with Valley Life For All, continues a monthly series of profiles about people in our community who meet challenge with courage and perseverance.

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