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Visiting The Garden Of The Gods

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Visiting The Garden Of The Gods

One of the joys of living in Colorado is being able to get out of the house and enjoy the scenery. And yeah. This is all still new to me. I haven’t reached the “take-it-for-granted” stage. Hope I never do. I could never understand how many people could live in Akron and Northeast Ohio for years without ever heading to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park on a sunny Sunday afternoon in the fall for a walk, run or bike ride.

Go figure.

Well, I figure I might as well try to see as much of Colorado as I can. And there is certainly plenty to do and see within a short drive of my home in Woodland Park.

Last Sunday I visited the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs. On an afternoon graced with nearly perfect weather — clear, blue sky, abundant sunshine and temps near 60 — it wasn’t difficult to understand why so many were in the park hiking, rock climbing and rubbernecking.

Here’s more info about the Garden of the Gods:

By the 1870’s, the railroads had forged their way west. In 1871, General William Jackson Palmer founded Colorado Springs while extending the lines of his Denver and Rio Grande Railroad. In 1879, General Palmer repeatedly urged his friend, Charles Elliott Perkins, the head of the Burlington Railroad, to establish a home in the Garden of the Gods and to build his railroad from Chicago to Colorado Springs. Although the Burlington never reached Colorado Springs directly, Perkins did purchase two-hundred and forty acres in the Garden of the Gods for a summer home in 1879. He later added to the property but never built on it, preferring to leave his wonderland in its natural state for the enjoyment of the public. Perkins died in 1907 before he made arrangements for the land to become a public park, although it had been open to the public for years. In 1909, Perkins’ children, knowing their father’s feeling for the Garden of the Gods, conveyed his four-hundred eighty acres to the City of Colorado Springs. It would be known forever as the Garden of the Gods “where it shall remain free to the public, where no intoxicating liquors shall be manufactured, sold, or dispensed, where no building or structure shall be erected except those necessary to properly care for, protect, and maintain the area as a public park.”

Hmm. “No intoxicating liquors.”

Well, no place is perfect.

But the Garden of the Gods comes close.

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