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Lakewood, CO

The area of Lakewood, west of Denver, was first established in the late 1800s, but it wasn't incorporated as a city until 1969. First created as "Jefferson City," locals complained that it could get confused with other towns and requested a name change to the original Lakewood. Several companies have set up bases in Lakewood, including 1stBank, The Integer Group and Einstein Bros. Bagels.

The Community of Lakewood

Situated immediately to the west of Denver, Interstate 70 passes by Lakewood to the north. Because Lakewood was originally a collection of small water and fire districts that were governed by Jefferson County, the city doesn't have a traditional downtown area or historic center. The 22-block Belmar neighborhood fills that role with a central plaza, shopping and restaurants.

What to Do in Lakewood

Outdoor recreation enthusiasts will enjoy Lakewood, especially Bear Creek Lake Park. There's camping, mountain biking, horseback riding, trails for hiking and running, swimming, boating, kayaking and archery. You can even try windsurfing! If that's not enough, the visitor's center features educational displays about the land and wildlife.

The city-run Carmody Recreation Center is a one-stop place for any type of activity, from swimming to pickleball to outdoor fitness. A new splash pad is fun for little ones. You can get a drop-in daily pass for a reasonable $5 or invest in an annual pass.

Shoppers will appreciate the Colorado Mills outlet mall, home to more than 160 stores, a children's play area, an IMAX theater, a bounce facility and a miniature golf course. From fast food to moderately priced dining at the Yard House or Villa Fresh Italian Kitchen, you'll also find a variety of eateries here.

One Place You Shouldn't Miss in Lakewood

The Lakewood Heritage Center in Belmar Park hosts a museum with more than 40,000 artifacts about the history of the area, an amphitheater and regular events. Walk around outside to see historic structures and try the food carts. The gift shop is known for having unique local items like jewelry and artwork available.

Dining in Lakewood

240 Union bills itself as a "creative grille" and offers something for nearly any palate, including fresh seafood, steaks and wood-fired pizzas. An open kitchen lets you watch food preparation and daily specials give you options that incorporate the freshest local foods. Wine, cocktails and desserts are all worthy additions to your meal.

Breakfast skillets, bowls and tacos are all served mornings at the Blue Sky Cafe, which also has a lunch menu but is known for its fun approach to breakfast foods. Try sweet potato or blue corn pancakes, a quinoa superfood bowl or a huge breakfast skillet with home fries.

Very Walkable
Some Transit
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