Home  |  News  |  Features & Opinions Archive  |  2007  |  Article

News: Features & Opinions Archive (2007)

« back

Date: October 2007

Parks Forum at Red Rocks

Saturday, October 13, 2007

9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Free refreshments and music!

Celebrate the Denver Mountain Parks Legacy!

Share your ideas for the Denver Mountain Parks and Jefferson County Open Space Master Plans!

Red Rocks Visitor Center Terrace at the Top Circle Lot

Parks will Rock at Open House Forum on October 13, 2007

Red Rocks will be the spectacular setting for an informal open house on Saturday, October 13th, 2007 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. to celebrate the legacy of Denver Mountain Parks and Jefferson County Open Space. Together, Denver Mountain Parks and Jefferson County Open Space provide more than 60,000 acres of open space parks to the public. Both Denver and Jefferson County want public feedback on their master plans for park, open space and trail improvements.

Peter Wernick, "Dr. Banjo" of Hot Rize and Flexigrass Band fame, will give a free performance on the Visitor Center Terrace at the Top Circle Lot. Residents from across the Front Range are invited for the music, food, and a chance to offer their thoughts about the parks, open spaces and trails in Jefferson County.

The City and County of Denver began its 14,000-acre, historic mountain park system in 1912 after the public passed a small tax to purchase land and build roads so that all residents could "escape" the city and join tourists in the cool mountains. By 1939, Denver had built the bulk of its system, its iconic stone picnic shelters and parks in three counties: Jefferson, Douglas, and Clear Creek. It built Winter Park Ski Resort, in Grand County, in the 1940s and the Newton Group Picnic areas in the 1970s.

Today, the Denver Mountain Park system stretches from the highest city park in the U.S., Summit Lake at 12,800 feet on Mt. Evans, to the sumac and scrub oak foothills at Daniels Park near Castle Rock. It boasts Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre, Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave, Evergreen Lake in Dedisse Park, and a string of popular picnic parks along Bear Creek. The current Master Plan, partially funded by Great Outdoors Colorado and expected to be completed by the end of the year, intends to take the 1912 vision into the current century, especially for recreation trends, natural resource protection and stable funding.

Jefferson County Open Space began its nationally-known open space system in 1972 with a one-half of one percent sales tax which it supplemented with a bond in the 1990s. Its over 50,000 acres of open space range from historic sites such Hiwan Homestead or Flying J Ranch to pristine tops of peaks. Known for their extensive multi-use trail system, the popular Jefferson County Open Space parks, like some Denver Mountain Parks, face heavy use.

Jefferson County citizens are known for their strong support of open space conservation and the Open Space department updates their community-drive[driven?] master plan every five years. The information and input at the Red Rocks Open House in October will be a kick-off for their current update.

Jefferson County Open Space and Denver Mountain Parks together provide a regional system of parks and open spaces for people, wildlife, and water without regard to political boundaries. The two counties work together for the preservation of these open spaces, such as the recently completed trail head on the Lariat Loop on Lookout Mountain, built by Jefferson County, that connects people to Denver’s historic Beaver Brook Trail.

For information on the two master plans or the October 13th Open House, please contact Susan Baird at Denver Parks and Recreation (720-913-0617) or Thea Rock at Jefferson County Open Space (303-271-5902) or www.denvermountainparks.org.

« back


PLAN Jeffco continues to play a key role in Open Space policy and direction in Jefferson County. Become a part this legacy—join us today!