Axios Denver

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November 23, 2021

It's Tuesday, two days 'til Turkey day. 🍗

  • A reminder: We're on "vacation mode" this week with a lighter newsletter today and tomorrow. We're off Thursday and Friday.

Today's weather: Forecast says mostly sunny, breezy and high near 66°.

😷 Situational awareness: Jefferson, Adams and Arapahoe counties will require masks in most indoor public settings starting Wednesday to help control the spread of COVID-19. 

  • Denver will announce its own new rules today.

Today's newsletter is 690 words — a 2.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Food banks struggle with rising prices and supply issues

Volunteers plate food during a Thanksgiving meal at the Denver Rescue Mission in 2018. Photo: AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post via Getty Images

A traditional Thanksgiving meal will cost about 14% more this year than in 2020 — and the price surge is straining local food banks working to feed families in need.

The big picture: Inflation, supply-chain challenges and soaring global demand for food, especially meat, have contributed to the rising costs, according to the American Farm Bureau.

Zoom in: A spokesperson for Food Bank of the Rockies tells Axios it is paying 54% more for vegetable oil, 30% more for canned fruit and that freight costs have increased by upwards of 25%.

  • The SouthWest Denver Coalition, which is handing out 200 turkeys this year, had to forgo buying the fixings because yams and canned corn were too pricey, Denverite reports.
  • Denver Rescue Mission says supply chain issues are also crippling the team's ability to replace broken kitchen equipment. The average wait time for appliances is now up to four months instead of four weeks, spokesperson Kevin Baker tells Axios.

Why it matters: A sharp spike in the need for food assistance throughout the pandemic is also stretching food bank resources thin, local service providers tell Axios.

  • The metro region’s homeless population increased by 40% over the last 22 months to about 6,000, Denver Rescue Mission estimates.

How to help

2. Black Friday is beer Friday

Bottles of Goose Island's Bourbon County stouts
Goose Island's Bourbon County stouts. Photo: John Frank/Axios

On the Friday after Thanksgiving, some people line up in the dark outside Walmart or Best Buy.

  • Not our resident beer geek. John hunts for special beers instead.

What's happening: Black Friday is Beer Friday — an unofficial industry holiday filled with releases of rare beers from local and national breweries.

  • The most anticipated is the annual debut of Goose Island's Bourbon County stouts, which are winning rave reviews so far this year for their refined wood and spirits characteristics.

Between the lines: Bourbon County Brand Stout was the first-ever bourbon-barrel aged beer and debuted to massive acclaim at the Great American Beer Festival in Colorado in 1995.

How it works: Colorado only gets a limited supply of Bourbon County stouts, and they only arrive at certain stores — the ones that typically sell the most Goose Island beers.

Be smart: Colorado breweries are releasing some amazingly tasty stouts on Black Friday, too.

The can't-miss local Black Friday beer releases … and John's tasting notes on this year's Bourbon County stouts

3. Nuggets: The headlines keep coming

Illustration of a trail sign, with the hiker icon holding a pickaxe, over the word "nuggets."
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

👀 Gov. Jared Polis is denying any knowledge of $1.6 million in payments to his personal and business associates who initially volunteered to help the state. The money covered costs related to electronic tracking of people's movements during the pandemic. (Denver Gazette)

🚨 A man who worked at the Denver Rescue Mission homeless shelter was stabbed by a 22-year-old who once stayed at the facility but was kicked out a day earlier. The man later died. (Denverite)

📺 The Agency, a real estate firm that sells luxury properties, is opening an office in Cherry Creek. It is best known for being featured on reality TV shows, including "Million Dollar Listing." (Denver Business Journal)

👯‍♀️ The Colorado Ballet's production of "The Nutcracker" is getting a refresh this year, with new costumes for the dancers. (Denver Post)

🎄 A must see: A Denver entrepreneur recreates his grandfather's beautiful midcentury modern Christmas trees, selling more than 1,000 a year. (Denver Gazette)

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4. Hot Homes: 6 Thanksgiving week listings starting at $510K

2222 Irving St. Photo: nate polta/milehimodern
2222 Irving St. Photo courtesy of Nate Polta/milehimodern

Denver's housing market continues to hint at a slight seasonal cooldown, per Zillow’s latest market report.

Yes, but: The city’s average home value is $574,734, up 22% compared to October 2020, writes Axios’ Gigi Sukin.

State of play: Right now, the market fits classic fall trends, including decreasing list prices, longer times on the market and more price cuts.

  • This means buyers may experience less competition, giving them more time to decide on a home and more opportunity to negotiate.

Here's a look at the week's real estate picks.

2222 Irving St. — $1,000,000

Why we love it: My daydream in house form. Built by one of the founders of an early Denver newspaper in 1886, this Witter-Cofield Historic District residence has vintage details with modern updates.

More details and more picks

What we're thinking:

🍳 John is pumped about this restaurant's expansion and brewery collaboration.

Alayna is back next week.

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