When I arrived in Colorado Springs in 1997 as a college student, some upperclassmen initially toured me around a bit. In short time, I was directed to worthwhile restaurants near campus and shopping places, like The Arc for furniture, plus all the best hiking and bike trails. I operated in a relatively small radius. I didn’t really know the city then, even after four years. It took many more years for my bubble to fully expand, when I later got a car, and chose to live locally after graduation and much world travel.
I got to know the Springs little by little, and eventually was propelled into almost every neighborhood in the city and nearby counties, as my writing for the Indy tasked me to seek out every new eatery, bar, coffee shop and food or drink entity we could find inside our distribution footprint. All this time later, I’ll still encounter little corners or pockets where I’ve never been — a lot of new development on the Northeast side, for example.
Given the size of our wider metropolitan area, it’s not actually surprising when you hear longtime locals say they haven’t been to or spent much time in places like Palmer Lake, or Black Forest, or Green Mountain Falls, or Fountain, or Falcon. But I’m a firm believer that everywhere has something of interest to offer, be it a city park or bike trail, place of art or culture, dining opportunity, or even a rare emptiness like the plains out east, where you’ll find the unique Paint Mines Interpretive Park awaiting exploration.
Part of our mission annually with the production of this Insider guide, is to pinpoint the interesting elements of our cityscape and our matchless landscape, to distill down our essence for tourists and locals alike. Someone passing through, with just hours to spend, can hit the highlights, while locals might identify an overlooked gem. This guide exists as a snapshot of who we are as a city, how we function, and the diversity of threads woven into our cultural fabric.
It’s our attempt to play the role of that friendly upperclassman, to orient you to this amazing city you’ve either just met, or thought you fully knew. If you are local, pick up the Indy weekly to stay tuned in to everything from the must-see concerts and performances and latest nightlife hotspots to what’s going down at City Hall. Our news team aims to tell stories you won’t hear from other local media, and provides a vital watchdog role over our community and its elected leaders.
Enjoy our 2019 Insider guide — and keep it handy!
Until next year, cheers.