Favorite

Primer 

TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

Note: For tourism info, also consider visiting the Colorado Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau, 515 S. Cascade Ave., 635-7506. On the Web: visitcos.com.

Bear Creek Nature Center

245 Bear Creek Road, 520-6387

Half-buried in the woods and located next to a quiet stream, Bear Creek is the perfect place to nature-up the kids. Expect animal education presentations along the lines of "Wiggly Worms" and "F Is for Fox," plus nature clubs, trail information and guided and self-guided tours.

The Broadmoor

1 Lake Ave., 634-7711, 866/837-9520 | broadmoor.com

Best of 2009

Recently (as of the beginning of this sentence) nicknamed "The Big Pink," The Broadmoor is our fair city's five-star, five-diamond hotel boasting every amenity the well-funded traveler could ask for, up to and including a duck pond.

Buckskin Joe Frontier Town & Railway (seasonal)

1193 Fremont County Road 3-A, Cañon City,719/275-5149 | buckskinjoe.com

Described as an authentic, 1860s frontier town, Buckskin Joe offers gunfights, magic shows and food from mid-May to mid-September, and again in October with a unique take on Halloween, the Town of Terror. Also enjoy Buckskin's partnership with the Royal Gorge Scenic Railway, who offers one of the more scenic rides through the Gorge.

Cave of the Winds

100 Cave of the Winds Road (six miles west of Interstate 25 and Highway 24), Manitou Springs, 685-5444 caveofthewinds.com

Spelunking, stalactites, stalagmites ... Cave of the Winds offers two tours for those hankering for some Colorado rock: the family-friendly, 45-minute Discovery Tour, and the 90-minute Lantern Tour, where children under 5 are not permitted and it's possible somebody will get lost forever. (Not true.)

Cheyenne Mountain Heritage Center

1118 W. Cheyenne Road, 632-7000 cmheritagecenter.org

The 20-year-old Heritage Center was created with the idea of preserving and promoting the Cheyenne Mountain way of life. This is usually done through speaker series, reference materials, photo galleries, exhibits and resources for students (especially the home-schooled variety) to access. Also look for its KIVA publication for stories and photographs.

Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

4250 Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Road, 633-9925 cmzoo.org

The premier Colorado Springs destination for looking at animals in cages, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo was originally started by local luminary Spencer Penrose, who also constructed the Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun on-site as a tribute to his friend. If feeding enthusiastic giraffes isn't your thing, enjoy the live Web cams online.

Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center

30 W. Dale St., 634-5581 | csfineartscenter.org

Best of 2009

Not just the place to catch inspirational national and local artwork, the FAC also boasts a theater company (which opened 2010 by performing Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street to stellar reviews); a well-regarded restaurant, Café 36 at the FAC; and pre-theater, post-exhibit tapas bar, the Deco Lounge. It's also the site of Bemis School of Art.

Cripple Creek & Victor Narrow Gauge Railroad (seasonal)

Fifth and Bennett avenues, Cripple Creek, 719/689-2640 | cripplecreekrailroads.com

From mid-May through mid- October, the CC&VNGR is the best way to feel the fury of the 0-4-0 (designating two axles and four wheels driven by steel rods) locomotive beneath your feet while you gaze out on actual mining history throughout the Cripple Creek area.

Cripple Creek gambling

visitcripplecreek.com

Colorado recently decided we could all sit at the gambling grown-ups table by increasing hours, games and betting limits. While already one of the go-to spots for losing your savings, Cripple Creek is now able to offer higher poker stakes, games of chance and the opportunity to further that waning gambling addiction.

Dr. Lester L. Williams Fire Museum

375 Printers Pkwy., 285-5950 | fire-museum.netfirms.com

Open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Lester Williams Fire Museum is the home of an 1896 combination hose wagon, a 1926 Ahrens-Fox Pumper vehicle (among others) and loads of historic photos and documents collected by ex-CSFD physician Dr. Williams.

El Pomar Carriage Museum

11 Lake Circle, 577-7065 | elpomar.org

If you've ever wondered what dubs the Roaring Twenties folks were rolling on, visit the Carriage Museum, located near the Broadmoor Hotel. It features vehicles owned by Spencer and Julie Penrose, including a 1906 Renault and Julie's 1928 Cadillac limousine. Admission is free, and you'll see not only cars, but collections of Native American artifacts and antique firearms, among other things.

Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument

15807 Teller County 1, Florissant, 719/748-3253 | nps.gov/flfo

If the stunning vistas shining forth from its Web cam (there's even a flag pole!) weren't enough to sate your desires to fraternize with fossils, Florissant Fossil Beds is just a quick drive away. It offers 14-foot-wide petrified redwood stumps and plenty of insect and plant fossils — but sorry, no dinosaur relics.

Flying W Ranch Chuckwagon Supper & Western Show

3330 Chuckwagon Road, 598-4000, 800/232-3599 | flyingw.com

The Flying W is the only ranch around to find "authentic cowboys" serving "mighty tasty" "Western, cowboy-sized meals" in an "authentic Western town." Basically, come here if you're wearing boots or wish you were.

Focus on the Family Welcome Center

8655 Explorer Drive, 531-5181 | family.org

Parenting and marriage advice, mass holiday layoffs, the Tim Tebow Super Bowl ad ... want to visit the epicenter of it all? Founder and longtime president James Dobson has departed, but the welcome center, book store and perfect-for-Christian-kids Adventures in Odyssey-themed play area are none the worse for the wear.

Garden of the Gods Trading Post

324 Beckers Lane, Manitou Springs, 685-9045 | co-trading-post.com

So you played Atlas and held up Balanced Rock — nay, the world — and aren't sure what to do now. Head to the Trading Post to get your fix of Garden of the Gods merch, Navajo rugs, Pueblo pottery, local art and some bangin' buffalo burgers from the Balanced Rock Café.

Garden of the Gods Visitor & Nature Center

1805 N. 30th St., 634-6666 | gardenofgods.com

Best of 2009

Not to be confused with the GOG Trading Post, the Visitors Center is chock-full of (real) stuffed animals, buffalo statues, food, artwork, information, (blessed) bathrooms, general souvenir schlock and a great view of the rock formations, complete with coin-slot binoculars.

Glen Eyrie Castle

3820 N. 30th St., 634-0808, 800/944-4536 | gleneyrie.org

When the castle that Springs founder William Palmer built for his wife isn't acting as "a holy place, with a rich spiritual heritage and a history of changing lives through the grace of Jesus Christ" (via ownership by the Navigators), Glen Eyrie offers teas and tours in addition to being an all-round interesting historical place to visit.

Helen Hunt Falls Visitors' Center (seasonal)

4075 N. Cheyenne Cañon Road, 385-5940

Helen Hunt Falls offers some of the best easily accessible hiking in the area, with the bottom of the trail featuring a rock bridge running straight across the falls. The trails are easy enough for rambunctious toddlers, with increasing difficulty as you venture upward and outward.

Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo

Main Street and Union Avenue, Pueblo 719/595-0242 | puebloharp.com

One of the main reasons to leave the Springs' warm embrace would be Pueblo's Riverwalk. Bordering the Arkansas River, the paved walk embodies the best of European city design, giving folks the chance to dine alongside the water, or catch a show at the outdoor theater.

IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial

Memorial Park, 1605 E. Pikes Peak Ave. | iaff.org

A slice of real life in the middle of some green, the Fire Fighter Memorial lies in Memorial Park, providing a place to honor the names of more than 2,000 men and women killed on the job. More are added and honored in an annual ceremony.

The John May Museum Center (seasonal)

710 Rock Creek Canyon Road, 576-0450 | maymuseum-camp-rvpark.com

The museum center brings together all of life's passions: thousands of tropical invertebrates, space exploration and RV camping. Bring the camera and the laptop, because this hotspot brings the Wi-Fi.

Manitou Cliff Dwellings

10 Cliff Dwellings Road, Manitou Springs, 685-5242, 800/354-9971 | cliffdwellingsmuseum.com

What they lack in authentic remnants of Anasazi cliff dwellings, they more than make up for in enthusiasm. This "faithfully reconstructed and preserved" tourist trap balances an admirable desire to explore the culture of the "Ancient Ones" with a gift shop and museum located in an "authentically designed and constructed" Pueblo-style building.

Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine

9388 Hwy. 67 (one mile north of Highway 67), Cripple Creek, 719/689-2466, 888/291-5689 | goldminetours.com

Head 10,000 feet above sea level to drop down 1,000 feet into the Earth and learn some gold minin'. Find out about tuggers, slushers and jackleg drills, and get a chance to try some hand mucking and double jacking.

Pikes Peak Highway (weather permitting)

385-7325, 800/318-9505 | pikespeakcolorado.com

Built in the early 1900s by Spencer Penrose and now maintained by the city of Colorado Springs, this highway leads the way toward the promised land: a 14,000-foot perch looking out over miles of Colorado landscape. Enjoy the Summit House for topside snacks, and the ride back down for a return to more oxygen.

Pikes Peak Cog Railway

515 Ruxton Ave., Manitou Springs, 685-5401 | cograilway.com

If driving or hiking up the peak isn't your cup of maté, enjoy a three-hour round-trip scenic extravaganza on the Cog Railway. $33 tickets for adults ($18 for children) will buy you a seat with a view, the chance to see high-altitude animals and lots of fairly interesting information from a guide. Note: No outside food or drink is allowed, though the Cog Wheel Café will happily sell you a $4.50 hot dog or a $2.75 soda.

Rock Ledge Ranch Historic Site

3202 Chambers Way, 578-6777 | rockledgeranch.com

Though threatened by an ever-shrinking city budget, Rock Ledge and its myriad volunteers pulled together enough funds to carry on for the rest of 2010. It offers a historical look at Colorado Springs, in four parts: American-Indian living circa 1775; the 1860s Galloway Home stead; the 1880s Chambers Home and Ranch; and the Edwardian Country Estate as of 1907. Look for events like the Family Fourth — an Independence Day celebration featuring Honest Abe reading the Gettysburg Address — and the annual Holly Berry House Folk Art Festival in September.

Royal Gorge Bridge & Park

4218 County Road 3-A, Cañon City, 719/275-7507, 888/333-5597 | royalgorgebridge.com

If you'd love being suspended 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River, or traveling its length in a cable-supported aerial tram, or squishing the heads of the rafters below — and you've got an extra $24 per person ($19 for children) — have I got a suspension bridge for you.

Royal Gorge Route Railroad

401 Water St., Cañon City, 888/724-5748 | royalgorgeroute.com

Touristy, but cool, the Royal Gorge Route Railroad comes in several sizes and flavors, ranging from a $33 coach ticket to a $58-per-person Vista Dome (with a glass-covered roof) ticket to a $79 Dinner Car ticket. Alternatively, look for murder mystery and wine dinners, not to mention its Santa Express version during the holidays.

Santa's Workshop / North Pole

5050 Pikes Peak Hwy., Cascade, 684-9432 | santas-colo.com

Since 1956, Santa's Workshop has been bringing a slice of holiday heaven to the slopes of Pikes Peak. Open May through December, the longtime haven for Christmasophiles everywhere offers food, rides, shows and more for around $18 per person.

Serenity Springs Wildlife Center

24615 Scott Road, Calhan, 719/347-9200 | serenityspringswildlife.org

Featuring lions, tigers and binturongs (oh my), Serenity Springs is home to a wide variety of big cats, most hailing from retired Las Vegas shows, movie and commercial sets, and the homes of owners who lost their cat privileges for various reasons. Tours run at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays (call first), and tickets run $10 per person (or free for under 2).

Seven Falls

2850 S. Cheyenne Cañon Road, 632-0765 (information), 632-0752 (main line) | sevenfalls.com

If you hike around the Springs area, you'll find cascading fonts of water ... but nowhere else can you get seven of them right off a main thoroughfare. Bring your walking shoes, inhaler and maybe a sandwich, because 224 steps, and not one fewer, will get you to the top. Tickets range $5.75 to $10.75; look for the lights at night.

Starsmore Discovery Center (seasonal)

2120 S. Cheyenne Cañon Road, 385-6086 | cheyennecanon.org, springsgov.org

Catch them Wednesday through Sunday to find maps of Cheyenne Cañon, prime bird-watching space, informational exhibits on local wildlife and the real reason to visit: the Junior Ranger program.

United States Air Force Academy

2346 Academy Drive, 333-2025 | usafa.af.mil

If you've ever asked your parents, "Where do cadets come from?" here lies your answer. After enjoying the heavily wooded drive (and the entry-gate search), head for the iconic Cadet Chapel, and don't miss the Barry Goldwater Visitor Center.

United States Olympic Complex

1 Olympic Plaza, 866-4618, 888/659-8687 | teamusa.org

With the U.S. just having dominated the Vancouver Winter Games, the Olympic Complex looks like a more desirable destination than it has in decades. Look for paraphernalia of all stripes at the gift shop, and guided tours (often from in-house athletes) to some of the Complex's training grounds.

Will Rogers Shrine of the Sun

4250 Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Road, 578-5367 | elpomar.org

Named after the famous entertainer and a burning ball of cosmic gas; located 8,000 feet above sea level; and standing 114 feet high is the final resting place of Spencer and Julie Penrose, along with some friends of the couple. It's the best view in the city, and accessible through a toll-gate at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.


Rafting

Though a whitewater rafting trip will usually lead a person an hour or so out of town — and run that person anywhere from $50 to $110 — it's really the only way to enjoyably be pounded against sharp rocks in the middle of June, when the water's at its highest. All the following places offer varied river trips (Arkansas, Colorado, etc.) covering up to class V (expert) rapids. Most run through the Royal Gorge.

First out of the gate is Echo Canyon River Expeditions (raftecho.com), a 31-year-old outfit offering half-day and all-day trips as well as a variety of package deals, including a partnership with the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. River Runners (coloradospringsrafting.net) has locations in Cañon City and Buena Vista, and Whitewater Adventure Outfitters (waorafting.com) offers half-off for kids with some limitations. Wilderness Aware Rafting (inaraft.com) takes rafters through the well-known Numbers section of the Royal Gorge, in addition to offering bike, Jeep and horseback trips.

Outside of the typical Cañon City home base is Rock Gardens Rafting (rockgardens.com), a Glenwood Springs-based provider that offers extensive discounts, specials and free hot showers (the real highlight). Also look for Noah's Ark Rafting (noahsark.com) and its canoeing, fishing and rock climbing packages out of Buena Vista.

MEDIA

Newspapers

African American Voice

528-1954 | africanamericanvoice.net

The 19-year-old monthly is published by former local NAACP chapter head James Tucker, and serves as a voice for the black Front Range community. Look for national and international news, as well as commentary on a variety of issues.

Colorado Springs Business Journal

31 E. Platte Ave., #300, 634-5905 | csbj.com

Specializing in business news with some local commentary, the CSBJ is part of a group of publications that include the Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group (distributed on local military bases) owned by Minneapolis-based Dolan Media Company.

Colorado Springs Independent

235 S. Nevada Ave., 577-4545 | csindy.com

Colloquially known as "The Indy" or "The Single Most Amazing Piece of Local Print Owned or Not Owned by a Megalith of Publishing" (used interchangeably), the paper boasts 126,000 regular readers and, unlike the local daily, has yet to force-feed a copy of the New Testament to its readers.

Constitutionalist Today

260-7776 | theconstitutionalisttoday.com

Whether you call it the voice of opportunistic fear-mongerers all over the Front Range, or the go-to news source for "We the People" (i.e. local, freedom-loving patriots), it's impossible to deny that the Constitutionalist Today is published each month.

Denver Post

101 W. Colfax Ave. | Denver, 800/336-7678 | denverpost.com

Not Springs-based, but widely available, the 118-year-old flagship of media conglomerate MediaNews Group Inc. serves as a great source for Colorado news and commentary. Also enjoy the Sunday Post with home delivery of the Colorado Springs Independent.

Gazette

30 S. Prospect St., 632-5511 | gazette.com

The Gazette is our town's only daily source of continuous opinion pieces on a variety of less-than-interesting topics. A one-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the paper also offers a selection of 33 different, randomly updated blogs.

Hispania News

1715 Monterey Road, #220, 540-0220 | hispanianews.com

With articles in Spanish and English, the almost-23-year-old publication serves our area's Hispanic and Latino readers with a variety of local and national news, in addition to local interest pieces.

Pueblo Chieftain

825 W. Sixth St., Pueblo, 719/544-3520, 800/279-6397 | chieftain.com

With more than 130,000 online readers, the family-owned Chieftain serves as Southern Colorado's primary news source.

Neighborhood newspapers

Look for the Academy Spirit (csmng.com), Black Forest News & Palmer Divide Pioneer (blackforestnews-co.com), Cheyenne Edition (waltpub.com), El Paso County Advertiser and News (382-5611), Fort Carson Mountaineer (csmng.com), Mountain Jackpot (mountainjackpot.com), New Falcon Herald (newfalconherald.com), Pikes Peak Bulletin (pikespeakbulletin.com), Pikes Peak Courier View (coloradocommunitynewspapers.com/courier_gold_rush), Space Observer (csmng.com), Schriever Sentinel (csmng.com), Tri-Lakes Tribune (coloradocommunitynewspapers.com/tri_lakes_tribune), Westside Pioneer (westsidepioneer.com) and Woodmen Edition (waltpub.com). Many are free, some cheap, at various distribution points (restaurants and bars, convenience stores, markets, etc.).

Magazines

Alegría Living

2605 W. Colorado Ave., #201, 520-1200 | alegrialivingonline.com

On the Web site, publisher Cinnamon Lynn says, "'Alegria' means 'joyful' or 'jubilation' in Spanish or Portuguese." With that in mind, the lifestyle magazine offers Chaffee, Custer, Fremont and El Paso counties stories on individuals, community events, food and wine, and regional history, among others.

Colorado Springs Style

118 N. Tejon St., # 405, 632-0422 | coloradospringsstyle.com

The 15-year-old Style is an affably accessible glossy for the affluent and well-to-do. In other words, it focuses on travel, cuisine, finance and business trends, among other areas of interest.

Edible Front Range

3033 Third St., Boulder, 303/449-4383 | ediblecommunities.com/frontrange

Licensed from the Edible Communities family and issued four times a year, Front Range describes itself as the magazine "that celebrates the abundance of local, seasonal food in Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins, Colorado Springs and towns in between." Look for pieces on food trends, gardening tips and recipes, among others.

Peak Region Cyclist

P.O. Box 25475, 338-4948 | peakregioncyclist.com

A local cycling magazine that's "published 10 times a year and reaches 6,000 people," says publisher David Pico. Look for information on trails, trends and biking news, in addition to a strong online presence.

PETacular

975 Elkton Drive, 260-8175 | petacularusa.com

Offered to pet lovers as a free quarterly newsletter at over 125 locations, PETacular also produces an annual directory, providing comprehensive information on vaccinations, local ordinances and listings on every type of pet treatment imaginable for the Boulder, Colorado Springs and Denver areas.

Women's Edition

5555 Erindale Drive, #201, 227-0262 | womensedition.com/localstories/coloradosprings/editcos.htm

The Colorado Springs Women's Edition is a localized part of a wider network of WE publications that focus on interest pieces like interior design, health, food, finances and fashion.

Local blogs

The Big Something

krccnetwork.org/tbs

Produced by longtime "culture vulture" Noel Black and KRCC general manager Delaney Utterback, the Big Something delivers a daily or once-weekly e-mail containing random goodness from the Pikes Peak area. Recent offerings include pics of Bishop's Castle, a slideshow of irises and an extensive offering of free indie music.

Colorado Springs Criminal Lawyer Blog

coloradospringscriminallawyerblog.com

It's not Bob Loblaw's law blog, but it does feature infrequent, helpful postings as promotional material for Gasper Law Group.

Colorado Springs Divorce Attorney Blog

coloradospringsdivorceattorneyblog.com

This one is also no Bob Loblaw's law blog, but it does feature infrequent, helpful postings (on divorce) as promotional material for Gasper Law Group.

Colorado Springs Real Estate Blog

springsblog.com

Here's where you'll find sales stats, loan tips and real estate listings from agents Joe and Jennifer Boylan.

THECONVERSATION

coppercs.blogspot.com

The mouthpiece for cultural advocacy group COPPeR (Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region), the blog operates as a place to highlight local agencies, share news and generally convey word of artsy activities.

The Dive Review

thedivereview.com

With some 80 archived restaurant reviews and a new one every few weeks or so, the Dive Review serves as one place for Springs foodies to unite.

Freethinkers of Colorado Springs

freethinkerscs.com

Sporadically updated, this blog describes Freethinkers as those who "advocate the use of reason, defend the separation between church and state and support human rights, civil rights, tolerance and equality for all."

Gazette blogs

gazette.com/sections/blogs

The daily offers more arbitrarily updated niche blogs than the individual sites listed in this section, but several stand out, including the Colorado Springs Arts Blog and Bill Vogrin's Side Streets.

IndyBlog

csindy.com/blogs/indyblog

If it's happening, if it's interesting, if it goes well with your lunch break, then it's on IndyBlog, singular mind dump of the Colorado Springs Independent. Look for opinionated posts throughout the day on news, arts, food, music and whatever else tickles our pickle.

Newspeak!

newspeakblog.com

All that remains of the local monthly Newspeak! publication, the "alternative" blog now goes months without an update. But you can check the archives for entertaining shots at the Indy.

Non-Prophet

nonprophet.typepad.com

Fairly consistently updated, Non-Prophet entertainingly riffs on electronics, space, life, the universe and everything (not to mention some steampunk for good measure).

Springs Bargains

springsbargains.com

Updated multiple times a day — with a very actively involved readership — Carrie Isaac's Springs Bargains is the best resource for money-saving tips in the Colorado Springs area. Recent posts include updates on Dunkin' Donuts giveaways, printable Payless Shoes coupons, and breakdowns in value of the week's grocery store discounts. Isaac also offers a $15, two-hour grocery budgeting workshop; check the Web site for details.

Springs Toaster

springstoaster.com

Co-helmed by Indy contributor Kristin Lynch, Springs Toaster is our town's online gay community for "the thousands of us out there in this conservative, right-wing, military-saturated town."

Ultra Rob

ultrarob.com/blog

Best of 2009

Rob Lucas' mind dump concerns all things open-space advocacy, outdoors and cycling-related.

We Are Change Colorado Springs

wearechangecoloradosprings.org/blog

We Are Change describes itself as "a citizen-based, grassroots peace and social justice movement working to reveal the truth behind the events of September 11th ..." Read on accordingly.

Radio

AM

KCSF 1300

593-2700 | sportsanimal1300.com

Sports (Colorado Springs Sky Sox, Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche).

KCSJ 590

719/545-2080, 590kcsj.com

News, conservative talk shows and sports in and around Pueblo.

KVOR 740

593-2700, kvor.com

Best of 2009

Local news, conservative talk (as in Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, etc.), and flagship for Air Force sports.

KRDO 1240

632-1515, krdo.com

Local news, sports and weather (tied to News Channel 13), national talk.

KDZA 1350

719/545-2080, kdza1350.com

Pueblo news, sports and more.

KZNT 1460

531-5438, newstalk1460.com

Conservative news and talk radio.

KCMN 1530

570-1530, 1530kcmn.com

"Golden Oldies" music and talk.


Radio: Commercial Music

Some might not look at Colorado Springs as the independent radio station mecca of the United States, and that's because ... well, it isn't. But we do have (more than) our fair share of Citadel Broadcasting and Clear Channel Communications stations reminding us why we love our iPods, not to mention a few outstanding indies scattered here and there. For our purposes, here follows the big 'uns:

KCME-FM 88.7 (kcme.org) has the answer to all your obscure, classical music needs in addition to the greats, while KKPK-FM 92.9 (929peakfm.com) — which used to just rock the oldies but expanded its selection with the merger of old stand-by Peak 95.1 — has brought about a mixed-hits format. KILO-FM 94.3 (kilo943.com) has been playing its modern hard rock mix for roughly 30 years, while station KATC-FM 95.1 (catcountry951.com) is a relative newcomer to the scene, joining KCCY-FM 96.9 (kccyfm.com) as the city's main purveyors of country western goodness.

KIBT-FM 96.1 (beatcolorado.com) does it all for the 'hood with its selection of charting rap and hip-hop hits. KKFM-FM 98.1 (kkfm.com) tags itself "Colorado's ONLY real classic rock" station and offers the popular Bob & Tom Show in the morning, while KKMG-FM 98.9 (989magicfm.com) only has enough hours in the day to play the eight most popular songs on the charts. Contemporary station KVUU-FM 99.9 (kvuu.com) basically combines some of the better parts of 92.9 and 98.9 (minus the hip-hop) and KRXP-FM 103.9 (1039rxp.com) debatably blows all previous frequency owners — including a mediocre classic rock format — away with an interesting blend of new artists (à la Silversun Pickups) and random old bands like the Rentals.

Rounding out our lineup are KKLI-FM 106.3 (kkli.com) provider of all things Christmas during the season, light adult contemporary, John Tesh and Delilah otherwise; Spanish-language station KNKN-FM 107.1 (719/547-0411) for música en español; and rock station KDZA-FM 107.9 (kdzafm.com).

Public

KTSC 89.5

719/549-2821 | rev89radio.com

Colorado State University-Pueblo's college station, playing a hip-hop and R&B format since 2002.

KEPC 89.7

502-3131 | ppcc.edu

Pikes Peak Community College's indie-mix station, good for impressively diverse music and stammering student DJs.

KRCC 91.5

473-4801 | krcc.org

Best of 2009

Our revered National Public Radio and Public Radio International affiliate, a community service of Colorado College.

Religious

KTLF 90.5

593-0600, ktlf.org

"Light praise," also known as, "What many churchgoing folk set their alarm to."

KGFT 100.7

531-5438, kgftradio.com

Religious talk, and praise.

KBIQ 102.7

531-5438, kbiqradio.com

Known in a past life as Q96, this is the Springs' modern Christian music radio station.

TV stations

KOAA Channel 5.1

632-5030, newsfirst5.com

Best of 2009

NBC affiliate, and Indy readers pick in multiple categories.

KTSC Channel 8.1

800/274-6666, rmpbs.org

Rocky Mountain PBS.

KKTV Channel 11.1

634-2844, kktv.com

CBS affiliate.

KRDO Channel 13.1

632-1515, krdo.com

ABC affiliate.

KXRM Channels 21.1 and 21.2

596-2100, kxrm.com

FOX and CW affiliate.

WEATHER INFO

Road information hotline

877/315-7623, cotrip.org

Weather forecasts

wunderground.com/US/CO/Colorado_Springs.html, weatherhub.com, weather.com

TRAVEL OPTIONS

Bike Rentals

Criterium Bicycles

6150 Corporate Drive, 599-0149 | criterium.com

Team Telecycle

615 S. Baldwin St., Woodland Park, 687-6165 | teamtelecycle.com

Ted's Bicycles

3016 N. Hancock Ave., 473-6915 | tedsbicycles.com

Bike Tours

Challenge Unlimited

633-6399, 800/798-5954

bikithikit.com

Founded in 1982, Challenge Unlimited started offering bike tours down Pikes Peak in 1991; also available is a four-day "Tour de Aspens" in September. Call for reservations and rates.

Pikes Peak Mountain Bike Tours (seasonal)

302 S. 25th St., 888/593-3062

bikepikespeak.com

May through August/September, PPMBT is a great way to find yourself on the back of a 2008 Kona mountain bike bumping and rolling down the side of America's mountain. Tours run rain or shine, and group discounts are available.

Bus lines

FrontRange Express

1015 Transit Drive, 636-3739, 877/425-3739 | frontrangeexpress.com

Barely breathing after the city managed to sell some buses, FREX offers travel along the Front Range (through December, at least). To and from Denver will run you $11 one-way, to Monument $5. Exact fare is required.

Metro Mobility

1015 Transit Drive, 392-2396, 520-3313 (tty) | springsgov.com/transit

Metro Mobility is an ADA paratransit service for Springsians who would benefit from curb-to-curb assistance and are unable to use standard bus service. It runs Monday through Friday from 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. (same as Mountain Metropolitan Transit). Call to reserve a ride.

Mountain Metropolitan Transit

1015 Transit Drive, 385-7433 | springsgov.com/transit

Though operating with reduced routes and hours (weekdays from 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.), the city's bus service is still a viable way for many of us to get around. Basic fare is $1.75, and exact change is required.

TNM&O Coaches Inc. (Greyhound)

120 S. Weber St., 635-1505, 800/231-2222 | greyhound.com

When you just have to get up and go and suffer from a debilitating fear of flight. In other words, it's national bus travel.

Bus tours & shuttles

Colorado Springs Shuttle

3002 E. Gunnison St., 687-3456, 877/587-3456 | coloradoshuttle.com

Running 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. every day, the shuttle is the perfect way to go from the Colorado Springs Airport to Denver International Airport and back (with a few stops in between). No ride is more than $50, and two can ride end-to-end for $88. For an extra $5, pets can ride, too. Call for group, senior and military discounts.

Gray Line Tours

132 E. Las Animas St., 633-1181, 800/345-8197 | grayline.com

An international sightseeing company, Gray Line offers tours throughout the Colorado Springs and Denver areas.

Ramblin Express

3465 Astrozon Place, 590-8687 | ramblinexpress.com

Ramblin is a Colorado company that can you get you basically anywhere you want to go in a variety of pretty kickin' cars. May we recommend the stretch?

Ute Pass Express

1015 Transit Drive, 385-7433 | springsgov.com

The UPE offers commuter bus service to and from Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, Cascade, Green Mountain Falls, Woodland Park and Divide. Riders pay $4 one-way ($2 for seniors, children, students and disabled) and enjoy cushioned seats, cup holders and free Wi-Fi.

Rides on demand

Designated Driver in Colorado Springs

650-3450 | noduicosprings.com

If it's Tuesday through Saturday, between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m., and it's not snowing like crazy, call the number 30 minutes before you'd like to leave, have car insurance and tip the driver; thus a DUI you shall avoid.

Teller Cab

512 W. Gunnison Ave., Woodland Park, 687-8222

Yellow Cab

4625 Town Center Drive, 634-5000

LODGING

Unique hotels

Antlers Hilton Colorado Springs

4 S. Cascade Ave., 955-5600 | antlers.com

While the original Antlers was constructed by city founder Willie J. Palmer, the current incarnation calls the Hilton brand home, and enjoys a four-diamond rating. Seven suites and 285 rooms offer comfort when you're not enjoying the grub at the Antlers Grille or Judge Baldwin's Pub.

The Broadmoor

1 Lake Circle, 577-5775, 866/837-9520 | broadmoor.com

Best of 2009

It's the place to find tennis, golf, ice skating, a world-class spa, pools, art classes and tours, and more dining options than you could possibly fill your trip with (including the Five-Diamond, Five-Star Penrose Room). It's the home of the 2011 U.S. Women's Open, and of over 700 guest rooms and suites. It's, in essence, The Broadmoor.

Cheyenne Mountain Resort

3225 Broadmoor Valley Road, 538-4000, 800/428-8886 | cheyennemountain.com

Cheyenne Mountain Resort offers an "immaculately groomed" 18-hole golf course, a country club, a tennis club, a fitness club (and perhaps just a club, for when you need to hit people), not to mention a killer Sunday brunch buffet.

Emerald Valley Ranch

7855 Old Stage Road, 635-2468 | emeraldvalleyranch.com

If there's a grand old man of this section, it's dear ol' Spencer Penrose, and he needs a mention here, too. Constructed in the '30s as a mountain getaway for the rich man, Emerald Valley now offers space for corporate retreats and weddings, in addition to rentals of 10 cabins.

B&B's

Blue Skies Inn

402 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs, 685-3899, 800/398-7949 | blueskiesbb.com

Blue Skies offers 10 different suites "especially well-suited to visiting parents and relatives of Colorado College students and United States Air Force cadets ..." Look for free Wi-Fi and a fireplace in every suite.

Carr Manor

350 E. Carr Ave., Cripple Creek, 719/689-3709 | carrmanor.com

Sure, you make the drive to gamble, then you eat, but where do you lay down your empty wallet at night? Here. Once the Cripple Creek High School, Carr Manor offers rooms and suites ranging from $125 to $300, with military price specials and romance packages available.

The Cheyenne Cañon Inn

2030 W. Cheyenne Blvd., 800/633-0625 | cheyennecanoninn.com

Located at the entrance to Cheyenne Cañon Park, the inn offers military specials, spa packages and a standard continental-style breakfast in the morning.

The Cliff House at Pikes Peak

306 Cañon Ave., Manitou Springs, 685-3000, 888/212-7000 | thecliffhouse.com

The Cliff House offers not only some of the area's finest dining, but also a great sleeping experience, having been rated a AAA Four-Diamond destination.

Holden House

1102 W. Pikes Peak Ave., 471-3980 | holdenhouse.com

Owned by El Paso County Commissioner Sallie Clark and her husband, Holden offers a classic B&B experience, with dining options like cinnamon streusel muffins, or Sallie's own Southwestern Eggs Fiesta.

Old Town Guesthouse

115 S. 26th St., 632-9194, 888/375-4210 | oldtown-guesthouse.com

Best of 2009

Winner of our Best Local Bed & Breakfast award, Old Town was built in 1997 on the former site of the 1892 city hall. Look for Wi-Fi throughout, floral-named rooms with typical modern amenities, and an "African Orchid" room that Old Town says exceeds ADA hotel requirements.

Spurs and Lace Inn

2829 W. Pikes Peak Ave., 227-7662 | colorado-bnb.com/spursnlace

A letter found in the attic dates this building to somewhere around 1885, though Spurs and Lace says the home was moved from its original location in Old Colorado City to its current spot. Five rooms are available at $110 for one night, with an open kitchen and a communal dining room.

The St. Mary's Inn

530 N. Nevada Ave., 540-2222 | thestmarysinn.com

Smack in the middle of downtown, the St. Mary's Inn offers a complimentary breakfast to accompany what's described as "a full gourmet European and Asian-inspired cuisine." Look for oak floors, Berber carpet, Wi-Fi and the must-try Jacuzzi.

CAN'T MISS EVENTS: TOURISM

Territory Days

May 29-31 | Old Colorado City, 487-8005 | shopoldcoloradocity.com

An "Old West" themed street event in its 33rd year, full of exhibitions, crafts, drinks and the always-appreciated turkey leg.

Colorado Renaissance Festival & Artisans Marketplace

June 12-Aug. 1, weekends | 650 W. Perry Park Ave., Larkspur | 877/259-3328 | coloradorenaissance.com

A classic Colorado event, now in its 34th year, that includes jousts, jokers, artisans and crafters, fire-breathers, bagpipers, and Twig the Fairy.

Springs Spree

June 19-20 | Memorial Park | springsspree.org

A fun-for-the-whole-family party in the park, including arts, crafts, dancing and live music, among other stuff for the kiddies.

Colorado State Fair

Aug. 27-Sept. 6 | State Fairgrounds, 1001 Beulah Ave., Pueblo | coloradostatefair.com

Rides, games, animals, food, rodeos, and an always entertaining assortment of country and hair bands. Last year brought Darius Rucker, otherwise and erroneously known as Hootie.

Colorado Balloon Classic

Sept. 4-6 | Memorial Park, 471-4833 | balloonclassic.com

Billed as "Colorado's Largest Air Show" and recognized as one of the Top 100 events in North America, the Classic features more than 100 balloons ascending, with an evening "Balloon Glo."

St. Patrick's Day Parade

March 13, 2010 | Tejon Street, 635-8802 |csstpats.com

Preceded by a 5K, the parade is a great place to enjoy some community and possibly a run-in with CSPD. (Kidding ... sort of.)

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