In a daze in Denver…the Dairy Block

On my first day walkabout I stumbled on one of Denver’s newest cool hang outs in the LoDo/Ballpark area, the Alley at the Dairy Block.

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Debuting in April 2018, the Alley at the Dairy Block is downtown Denver’s first “activated” alley. The alley stretches from 18th to 19th street between Blake Street and Wazee Street.

The alley was once home to Windsor Dairy, the premier creamery in Denver dating back to the 1880s. So what’s an “activated alley”? The length of the alley has been cleaned up, repaired, and decorated with murals and other outdoor art.

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Worthy words near a restaurant at the Blake Street end and I think lit at night
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Two stories of funky graphics

Most important for LoDo Denver residents is that now it has a common consumption liquor license which allows visitors to purchase a drink at one of its trendy bars or restaurants and carry it along with them to visit with friends at one of several outdoor patios or even peruse the shops. Signage on both ends of the alley reminds visitors that their alcoholic drinks cannot leave the alley.

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Open patios are defined by chunky woody and iron planters
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Just about the worst photo I’ve ever kept but these young people were happy to be captured playing a spirited game of corn hole at mid-afternoon
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Check out the cafe lights strung throughout–their “globes” are opaque milk bottles

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One corner of the Wazee Street end is anchored by the Milk Market, a unique food hall concept which opened in June 2018 with three bars and a dozen food vendors–also a very engaging sign on the alley side. I can imagine the success of this venture will spur development of other activated alleys throughout the historic district. Check out the happy hour or nightlife the next time you are in Denver. When you are thinking about dining at a restaurant you could find in your own home just because it’s easy or familiar, why not try someplace new and encourage Denver’s entrepreneurial spirit?



3 thoughts on “In a daze in Denver…the Dairy Block

  1. Bonanno? Mr. Bonanno was a mobster who was apprehended at the home of his wife where I lived while in high school. We lived in an identical house around the corner.


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