12 Days Of Christmas

I can’t think of a better way to thank you all for your incredible support these past 10 months than to do a series of give-a-ways and exclusive discounts to some of my favorite Denver businesses. Not only have I loved all your comments, tips and contributions, but through 1000 Things To Do In Denver, I have met some of the most inspiring friends, chefs, brewers, small businesses owners and creatives in this city. THANK YOU!

Tune in for the next 12 days to not only learn the winners, but why I’m so excited about the businesses who are participating. Enjoy and happy holidays!


BASE COAT NAIL SALON: I can’t think of a business I am more excited to pair up with than Base Coat Nail Salon. When you get your nails done there, you’re not just making yourself beautiful, you’re supporting a movement. Co-owner, Tran Wills, watched her Mom work in terrible, low paying and toxic conditions as a nail technician, and she is determined to change that, one salon at a time. All the products, down to the nail polish remover are safe, chemical-free and non-toxic, and don’t worry about your nail polish being long lasting, mine lasted a full ten days and could have gone longer, had I not have been tasked with a deep house clean!

Tran is also determined to pay her techs a real living wage, and works to mentor women, and promote from within. She just opened her first salon in Los Angeles with her partners, and three more are set to open in the near-future. Base Coat Nail Salon is also an inspiration for supporting local makers, its community building activities and raising money for those in need, most recently for Standing Rock. Thank you, Tran and Base Coast Nail Salon!

All Photos: @basecoatnailsalon, except the first, by @goplaydenver

WINNERS: The owner of Base Coat Nail Salon would like to extend 10% off to EVERYONE for service and products & gifts for the entire month of December, just mention 1000 Things To Do In Denver. The winners of the 3 $50 Gifts Cards are:  @malaryrose, @hi_jaylee, @verucapepper. Congrats! I will DM you details, tomorrow!



WIN A GUIDED WINTER HIKE/SNOWSHOE FOR JANUARY 22: I’m a huge fan of adventurer Natalie Magee ever since I took a Yoga/Spin class of hers, here in Denver. She’s incredibly dynamic and motivating, instantly earning an insta follows from me. I soon realized she operates her own one woman adventure outfit (you can read about her Winter Petite Retreat, for this February, here).It seems other have taken notice of her too, as she’s been recently snapped up to be a brand ambassador for Denver Beer Co. and Feral Mountain Co. Watching her out there, adventuring, against the most gorgeous of Colorado backdrops, snowshoeing, hiking, skating and more, made me want to pair up with her to give you this really fantastic give-a-way.

PRIZE: ONE WINNER PLUS A GUEST WILL GO FOR FREE, 8 additional spots are available at the discounted rate of $45 per person. Read more details, here.

PAYMENT: For those who win the guided trip at the discounted price of $45 per person, please pay Tuesday, December 20, to reserve your spot. If you have not paid by that time, your space will be given to someone else. Thank you.

THE FINE PRINT: If you are not able to go, there is no cash prize equivalent. Also, if you are unable to go or cancel, there is no credit available or discount applied for a future hike/snowshoe. If people cancel, in part, prior to the hike, Natalie reserves the right to cancel. She is doing this at a very discounted price, so there do need to be enough people who commit to their reservation. Thank you for understanding!

WINNERS: For the free Winter Hike/Snowshoe, @blazing_a_new_trail and your guest!

GOOD NEWS: If you do not win, an additional date has opened! First come, first serve, still at the discounted rate, save your spot, here!

Winners of the discounted price of $45 per person are: 1) @misswendijo +1   2) @kelseyschafer24 + 1   3)  @brookedominique + 1  4) @loloflys +1  5) @amydoobs +1  6) @emilylou + 1 7) @nikkiwalther +1  8) @gyyypsoul + 1

Please read The Fine Print above and then, by Tuesday, December 20, follow this link to make your payment! 



WIN A BRONCOS CAKE FROM VALHALLA CAKES! I just love Valhalla Cakes. Sam, the owner, is just as much an artist as she is a master baker. We had one of her cakes at a recent Pop Up with @milehighandhungry and @biteswithbre and she perfectly captured exactly what we wanted – a fun, whimsical cake that represented Denver food instgrammers. I’ve been in the shop several times, and each time, I’m blown away by Sam’s incredible talent. While I certainly hope you win, also keep her in mind for your next special occasion, birthday or wedding. My most favorite recent cake of hers? A Beastie Boys inspired one-year old’s cake with matching smash cake!


Photo: First, @valhallacakes, Picture 2 & 3, @jennisummerstudios

THE WINNER IS: @rtmac2012



A FREE HOUR LONG ENGAGEMENT SESSION WITH PHOTOGRAPHER OUR TWO HEARTS PLUS 50% OFF FOR 10 COUPLES! Photographer Dianna Marr of Our Two Hearts has captivated us with her engagement and wedding photography ever since the first day we started on instagram. It’s beautiful. rich and intimate with sometimes, the perfect hint of a documentary-like feel. The moments she captures are like nothing we’ve ever seen in the world of wedding photography, so we’re not surprised Our Two Hearts has such a huge, devoted following. See more on instagram.

THE FINE PRINT: Please redeem your session within a year from December 15, 2017. Location must be central to Denver. All rules Our Two Hearts has regarding deposits, bookings and cancellations still apply. Thank you!

WINNERS: The winner of the free hour long session is: @paigehuntsman. The winners of the 50% off, one hour sessions are:  @jnoellefitz, @kimvier24, @erisfully, @natii_29, @threeasterisks, @tpnguyen26, @wott101111, @scarlett_r_s, @omarstack and @mamahannahyo. Please contact Kayla at 1000ThingstoDoinDenver@gmail.com so I can send you your gift card!



I just love GQue BBQ, ever since I went to sample the goods with @milehighandhungry. I had heard how incredible the food was in nearly every Denver publication, from Eater to Zagat, but the pork ribs absolutely blew the doors off my taste buds. You can read my love letter to them, here, where I describe why they made the list of the best thing I ever ate.

WINNERS: I was thrilled that the owner, Jason Ganahl, made everyone a winner, with a gift of $10 back to anyone who purchases $50 in gift cards and a gift back of $25 back to anyone who purchases $100 in gift cards. While your loved ones might want to immediately blow their gift cards on all the mac and cheese and pork ribs they can eat (great idea!), they can also spend their gift cards on the fantastic BBQ classes the owner runs, as well.

THE WINNER Of The $50 Gift Card: @toria1414! Please email Kayla at 1000ThingstoDoInDenver@gmail.com and we’ll get it to you!



We can’t think of anything more fun than a private brewery tour and Breckenridge Brewery in Littleton is offering one to you and three friends, along with a $50 gift card for lunch or dinner at The Farmhouse to enjoy, after! Although The Farmhouse is so perfect for kicking back on the lawn in warmer months, we can’t wait to get cozy, inside by the fire place with a Christmas Ale and their cast iron apple pie!

PHOTO: The Half Baked Harvest. Find her AMAZING recipe for Christmas Ale Sangria, here!

THE WINNER OF The Breckenridge Brewery Tour and $50 Gift Card Is: @kat_lunas! Please email Kayla at 1000ThingstoDoInDenver@gmail.com and we’ll get you all the info!



If you’re like me, you just might want to dedicate 2017 to learning something new. That’s what so great about The Craftsman & Apprentice! They pair with amazing craftspeople around Denver, from wood makers, pie bakers and jewelry makers (and so many more!) and they host small, intimate classes.

EVERYONE’S A WINNER: The Craftsman & Apprentice is giving ALL OF YOU 20% OFF any adult class for all of January! You can check here, for class schedules (and keep checking back, more will be added, soon!)

THE BIG WINNER: @keholm, you and a guest have won a spot at any class of your choosing! Please email Kayla at 1000ThingstoDoInDenver@gmail.com and we’ll get you all the info!



There are few restaurants in Denver that do everything well and Vesta is definitely one of them. From the beautiful design to the fantastic food and the original and well-balanced cocktails, Vesta never misses a beat. We’ve gone on dates, for fun girls nights to big group dinners, the ambiance is just that perfect. Additionally, our vegetarian friends, and those who are gluten-free, nut free or lactose intolerant, love their diverse and creative menu! We’re so excited that six of you have won a $25 gift card and get to check out the new menu for yourselves!

CONGRATS TO THE WINNERS! 1) @herberad, 2) @shaungilmoir, 3) @funtimewiggins, 4) @jrdigennaro, 5) @erin.go.bravely, 6) @nphippen. Please email Kayla at 1000ThingstoDoInDenver@gmail.com and we’ll get you all the info!



We knew we needed to pair with a gym or studio for our 12 Days Of Christmas but we wanted something extra special. Lots of places are going to challenge you and make you sweat, but Explore Fitness has something extra, we believe: the ability for you to never get bored. And while that to us, is a HUGE plus, Explore Fitness also comes with an amazing pedigree, one of owners/trainers is 2-time Olympian Carl Van Loan.

Explore has a range of group fitness classes to choose from in mornings, lunchtime and evenings. From classes like Olympic Endurance taught by 2-time Olympian Carl Van Loan, to Upper and Lower Body Strength classes by former ski racer Taylor Jackson to AdventureFit classes with Athletic Trainer Elise Munn, there is something for everyone and all levels of experience.

Explore’s motto is “more fit, more fun” — and they mean it. From ski trips to mountain biking lessons to hikes in the summer, the team at Explore is always crafting up fun ways to get their clients outside. In the warmer months, Explore’s indoor / outdoor facility is the perfect way to train outside for your favorite activities and take advantage of the Colorado sunshine! We think having a place to workout, that is also focused on building community, has the added benefit of getting you to come back for more.

WINNERS: We love that Explore Fitness wants ALL OF YOU to be winners, so you’ll each get ONE FREE WEEK to check them out. Grand prize winner of ONE FREE MONTH FOR YOU AND A FRIEND is  @ohdearlover.

DM me so I can get your info and get you started!



There’s no way I couldn’t include Black Project Spontaneous & Wild Ales in this 12 Days Of Christmas. I had gone there several times and just been blown away by the beer but when I got to go to an exclusive Brewer’s Table, lead by owner/head brewer, James Howat, I knew I was experiencing magic. I don’t even pretend to know the exact science of how beer is made, I was sat rapt as he discussed putting giant containers (cool ships) on the top of their roof to capture wild microbes that will then be used to develop their wild and spontaneous ales. (Mind blown people!)

Since I know I am not doing the exact (and this process is quite exacting… and labor intensive) science justice, here’s a cool article from Porch Drinking, that describes the process better than I can.

So knowing all the incredible passion and hard-work, and oh man, the time it takes to develop a beer (most take a year to make), I just knew a gift bundle from Black Project would make EVERYONE excited!

HERE’S WHAT YOU GET: One of their Back Project hoodies. Wear it with pride, you’re one of the cool kids now. Vouchers for 2 amazing beers. May we suggest:

STARGATE: PEACH RYE begins as a custom blend of 8-10 month old golden sour base. 100% wild-caught microbes are used to referment Cresthaven peaches from Palisade, CO. Refermentation and subsequent aging took place in fresh A.D. Laws Secale straight rye whiskey barrels. We find that the delicious, fresh peach plays wonderfully with the delicate apricot notes produced by our native yeast. Moderate acidity is backed by a backbone made of the subtle hints of deep, fruit-forward rye whiskey and oak vanillin. This beer will develop in the bottle for years, however much of the fruit flavor will diminish or change, so we recommend enjoying at least one bottle fresh if you do intend to cellar. This beer is SOLD OUT and will not be available again until next harvest.
DREAMLAND (Batch 2) was released in early 2016. Our base Golden Sour was born from the coolship into two wine barrels. After 6+ months of development we added both barrels to our first solera vessel and slowly filled it with wort as fermentation hit key stages of progression. An additional 4-5 months later and we are finally releasing the first batch from this solera. Strong notes of peach on the aroma that is characteristic of our “house culture”, dry, tart. Subtle hints of malt complexity despite its light golden color. Quite sour but still very drinkable. Highly carbonated, serve cold and allow to warm in the glass. Batch 3 will be available in early 2017.

WINNER: @denverbeergirl – DM me so I can get your info!



Even though we’re winding down to the 11th Day Of Christmas, I still wanted a gift that would be INCREDIBLY exciting. And what’s more exciting than getting your hands on something that’s sold out? So first up, is a 1 year membership to The Denver Mug Club, brought to you by Two Parts, the company that brings you some of the most fantastic events in Denver, like the upcoming Collaboration Fest.

The Denver Mug Club entitles you to a stoneware beer mug that will travel from Denver brewery to brewery, once a month and once there, you’ll have a special night to get a free beer, additional discounted beer, as well as access to special tappings, private tours and more. This sold out so fast last year, I couldn’t even dream of getting my own, but these year, we have a membership for you and a friend, valued at $240.00.

AND THE WINNER IS:  @feastandwest

And since I hate to just award one winner, we have BONUS PRIZES, too! I have 5 Winter Warmers from Two Parts too, that came up with the genius idea of The Passport Program. It’s basically this cool passbook that you can take into one of the 58 participating bars and get 2-for-1 deals on specialty cocktails. It’s such a great way to explore the city – perfect for the adventurer and the cocktail lover (and okay, the frugal extraordinaire, as you can save over $300 using your Winter Warner!

AND THE WINNERS ARE: @hmeeson, @christineonthescene, @theagneslee, @dr.maile, @hilaryynp



True Confession: I’m a pizza snob. It doesn’t need to be expensive and it doesn’t have to be piled high with toppings, it just needs to evoke a bit of the nostalgia of my Great Grandmother’s homemade pizza. One thing that I always marveled about, about her pizza was how using such few ingredients resulted in such amazing results.

Pizzeria Locale in Denver transports me back to my childhood with their pies. It’s not surprising the crust tastes like my grandmother’s; they only use four ingredients, and the top is anchored by the fresh taste of tomatoes, bursting with their sweet brightness. So I was so excited when Pizzeria Locale wanted to team up on a give-a-way. I think they’re doing something really special there. Not only am I floored by the price, a cheese pizza is only $4.75, and I mention this because I think it’s so important to set an example that fresh food can be made affordable, and therefore accessible to everyone, but the folks at Pizzeria Locale also take the time to go into schools and teach kids how to make their four ingredient dough. Why is this important? Because it gets kids thinking about what they put in their body, at a really young and impressionable age!

But let’s get back to the good stuff: Free Pizza!

WINNERS: One of you will win Pizza for 5 from Pizzeria Locale. And ALL OF YOU will win Buy 1, Get 1 Pizza, on December 26! (One per customer, equal or lesser value.)

GRAND PRIZE WINNER: 5 Frees Pizzas goes to, @alexisisoriginal



Molly’s Spirits wants everyone to ring in the New Year in style! They’ve are giving one winner a 3 bottle of champagne package and 15 winners, $15 gift cards! Pretty fantastic considering they not only have such a huge selection of craft beer you can get by the can, but also Bubbles starting at $7.98!


















DM me through instagram and I’ll get you all the details!