Victorian Day and some other stuff you might want to do

Looking for something to do this week? Of course you are.

We have a few ideas.

First, there’s Victorian Day on Sunday (June 26) at the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum downtown. Looks like fun, and it’s free. There will be Victorian dance demonstration, a courtroom “melodrama,” free lemonade and watermelon and some Civil War re-enactors.

Victorian Day at Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum downtown.

You can come to Victorian Day dressed in your best "finery." I wanted to grow my facial hair this way for the event, but someone else who lives in the house vetoed the decision.


On Wednesday (June 29), there’s the second annual whiskey/beer tasting at the Fine Arts Center. The Whiskey for My Men, Beer for My Horses event costs $20 for nonmembers ($15 for FAC members), but if you wear a “big-ass” belt buckle, you can get $5 off admission. There will be samples from Downslope Distilling and Bristol Brewing, with music by Grass It Up, a bluegrass band from Colorado Springs.

After some midweek whiskey drinking, you might want to tone it down a little on Thursday with some Pinon Nut Brown Ale from Bristol Brewing. While the beer is probably outstanding, it’s worth the visit for the food from Blue Sage Catering. We had some of their food at Bristol’s Christmas Ale party. They’re incredible.

On Friday, the first day of July, nearly a hundred longhorn steers will be herded down Tejon Street. Why they’re doing this, I’m not sure — something to do with the rodeo, I guess. Whatever. Not into rodeos, but at noon on Friday, dozens of cows will be tromping along Tejon, so it sounds like something worth seeing.

Longhorn Steer Cattle Drive, downtown Colorado Springs

Yes, excuse me, I'm looking for Zeezo's -- am I on the right street?


July 2-4, if you haven’t had enough bovine entertainment, you can swing on over to Manitou Springs for the Buffalo Barbeque Festival at Soda Springs Park. Of course I’m not sure how entertaining the barbecue is for these bovines, but it sounds delicious.

Very awesome estate sale in Manitou today through Sunday

717 Manitou Ave, Manitou Springs, CO.

June 16-19

Thursday, Friday, Saturday 9-7, Sunday 10-6

Go to this sale. I know, I never go to things people tell me to go to if they don’t have any pictures or at least a compelling description of it.

But this thing defies description and pictures could not do it justice. Here’s just a little bit of info about it, you really do have to go to get the full effect of what I’m talking about.

First of all it is in a really beautiful old Victorian building that’s on the National Register of Historic Places. Just being in the building, it’s like time has stopped. Original wallpaper, original everything. Like a museum.

The sale is in the top floor apartment- it’s two stories with access to the roof. It’s huge and is in original condition. Like for real original condition. The bathrooms even have original wooden toilets with push button flushers. The ceilings are a million feet high and the woodwork is ornate.

From the flyer: This sale is enormous and everything in it is from generations of one family only. It will take place on four floors of the 1888 Historic Wheeler Building in the heart of Manitou Springs. Included are the contents from the Grand Apartment, formerly the private residence of Charles and Katherine Barsotti, purveyors of Fine Antiques & Furnishings, Rare Books, jewelry and art. Additionally, family heirlooms from the distinguished NYC Barsotti Great Grandparents will be offered.

The stuff that’s for sale is also very old, some Victorian and up to probably 1930. That kind of stuff is not necessarily my style (altho we are getting more into it since we bought the old house) but you can really appreciate the kind of work that went into these unique pieces. Definitely not IKEA.

There’s tons of Colorado ephemera– maps, pamphlets, postcards, and even photographs- some of which I’ve only seen online. Plus many many really old books, artwork and other accessories. There’s also vintage clothing, linens, and jewelry.

If you like old things you have to go to this sale- just to look, even if you aren’t in the market to buy anything. Be sure to look around at the building, the photos on the walls, and all the STUFF. It’s really incredible.

And, even if you aren’t into old things and wonder why people are, you should go. To see all this stuff in its original context is really a dazzling experience– and not one you come across very often anymore. You might be able to get why we’re so nuts about historic preservation.

European Cafe, Manitou Springs

We were looking for someplace different to go for breakfast recently. Of course we love Smiley’s and Maggie Mae’s but just wanted a change of pace. Also, Smiley’s is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

So we wandered up to Manitou to see what we could find.

I had been to the European Cafe last summer and had a latte that was really good. Plus there was a parking spot right in front, so we went in.

First Mike had some coffee and I ordered a latte again.

Cafe latte at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

Cafe latte at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

They have a decent sized menu with the usual egg dishes on it. The only thing I found to be a problem was that just about every egg dish came with FOUR eggs. That’s excessive. I suppose you could ask for fewer eggs. Anyhow, I ordered the potato pancake with one egg. It was really really good! Not greasy, or soggy, or overly oniony like they can sometimes be. The veggies were really good and even the melon and banana garnish were fresh and tasty.

Potato pancake with veggies and eggs at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

Potato pancake with veggies and eggs at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

Mike had a scramble with the four eggs and a bunch of veggies. It was also good but not nearly as delicious as my potato pancake. They also serve real butter, which of course you’d expect at a place called The European Cafe. But I’ve expected real butter at lots of places that should have it and don’t so it’s worth mentioning.

Some kind of scramble at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

Some kind of scramble at The European Cafe, Manitou Springs, CO

So, we will for sure go there again when we’re wanting breakfast in Manitou. You should check it out when you’re in the area, too. Tell us what you think!

Coquette Creperie

As you know, we love Paris Crepe on Tejon downtown.  But I’ve heard such good things about Coquette Creperie in Manitou that I wanted to try it out.

Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs

Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs

The outside seating  area is weird. It’s like a big front porch but separated by a railing. You can access one side from one part of the building and the other from the other side. I guess the current storefront was originally two storefronts or something. I don’t really know. Also, the seating on the porch is along a skinny bar that runs along the front railing and then some stools. That umbrella in the picture above kept swinging around and hitting us. There are also tables and chairs on the other side of the railing on the sidewalk but you can’t drink alcohol out there. One more annoying thing, they have a menu outside like most places. But unlike most places that have it hanging up someplace easy to see, Coquette Creperie has theirs hanging from a hook right at the entrance. Not only do people block the entrance when they stop to look at it but they’re standing right in front of the tables and the bar along the railing. The whole outside seating thing is really terrible. But since I have a thing about sitting outside we did.

They have lots of unusual crepes and some other items like appetizers, salads,  and non-crepe breakfasts. They also have alcoholic drinks, which is nice. We had the crepes, which by the way, are twice as expensive as at Paris Crepe.

Mike had an Italian cream soda and the Maple Crepe. It came with potatoes that he said were really good. As was the crepe. The home-made Italian cream soda was also super-delish.

Maple Crepe from Coquette Creperie, Manitou Springs, CO

Maple Crepe from Coquette Creperie, Manitou Springs, CO

I had the Coquette Blintz which was blueberries and ricotta inside a crepe. It was really good. Like I said before, twice as expensive as Paris Crepe. I also had a latte which was just ok.

Coquette Blintz crepe from Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs, CO

Coquette Blintz crepe from Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs, CO

Coquette Blintz crepe from Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs, CO

Coquette Blintz crepe from Coquette Creperie in Manitou Springs, CO

Anyway, the food was really good. I get that they’re trying to be a “real” restaurant. But it’s sort of weird with a lot of crepes and some random items and then some drinks.  Also they need to work on their outdoor seating area, it sucks.

We’ll probably go back there again at some point because the crepes were really delicious. But they’ll never take the place of Paris Crepe in our hearts!

Coquette Creperie on Urbanspoon

Family Vacation Part One

My parents, my brother, his kids, and my brother’s girlfriend came out to Colorado last week and we did some stuff.

My parents arrived first and for dinner we went to Nosh which I’ve been wanting to try. It was really good overall.

I had their special sangria, my dad had some scotch and my mom had some white wine.

We “noshed” on a blue cheese wdge type salad which was only ok. Kinda odd actually.

We also had a beet salad which I forgeot to take a picture of but which was really tasty. And we shared this shrimp and steak salad thing, also delish.

Of course we had dessert. Three TINY little things, a chocolate pudding, a cake parfait thing and a lemon cake. All were great.

The next day we went to Rico’s/Poor Richard’s for lunch. Here’s DM and my mom.

The rest of the group arrived in the afternoon and parked their motorhome right outside my house on the street. LOL. It was funny. We were going to go on the Cog Railway that day but it was rainy and late so we went to the arcade in Manitou instead. It’s a really neat old place with tons of old and new games. We all played Skee Ball.
Here is dad, mom, my nephew, then over on the other side, my brother, his girlfriend, and my other nephew. That is NOT a baby in the girlfriend’s arms, it’s an photographic optical illusion!

Here’s the girlfriend again.

After the arcade we all went up to Ted’s Montana Grill for dinner. We had to wait in the bar because it was really crowded. I forget what this drink was called- a bottle of coke and a glass of Woodford reserve whiskey. DM and my brother’s GF had this. I had a whiskey and lemonade which they gave a cute name to, as well.

Here we all are waiting at the bar. In Colorado kids are allowed in bars if they’re with an adult so we hung out in quite a few of them during the week!

Waiting for dinner.

Ooops didn’t get any shots of dinner, but here’s dessert!

More later!