Meet MP’s 2021 Carbondale Staycation host
Mother and Matriarch
BIKING AROUND TOWN
WITH A TOWNIE
What about planning a day with your kids that’s all about supporting small, family-owned businesses? Whether you are a visitor or a local, this can be a magical way to get out and try new things. Here are some places that are near (only a bike ride away) and dear to our family.
Start your day with a bike rental at Aloha Mountain Cyclry in La Fontana Plaza. Aloha offers handpicked brands that are suitable for all levels and owned by two great locals, Darren Broome and Nic Degross who truly live and breathe their craft of bike mechanics and showing off the latest and greatest. Snag an aloha bike jersey or hat and look like a local.
A few steps away, grab a coffee or smoothie or breakfast burrito and trail snacks at Dos Gringos. Family-owned and in business for 20 years and counting, DOS is a staple of the community, offering healthy food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and a friendly place to meet or even work remotely.
Once you’re fueled up, hop on the Rio Grande Trail directly behind DOS, where you’ll notice a pump track parallel to the pavement, perfect for littles to practice single-track riding.
This section of the 34-mile Valleywide paved path is designated as ARTway Park, which showcases interactive sculptures and the Latinx Folk Art Garden. Art installations are curated by the Carbondale Creative District.
This flows seamlessly into the zero-scape garden behind the Carbondale Rec Center where you can stop at the outdoor rock wall, a free amenity. Our seven-year-old loves to challenge herself exploring the various routes.
I suggest allowing plenty of time to stop at True Nature Healing Arts. When you enter the Peace Garden, you feel the sacredness of the space. The landscape, herbs, and flowers will blow you away. The larger-than-life deity statues are imported from across the globe. Feel your heart rate slow down in the zen sand garden. Walk barefoot on the reflexology path to invigorate all of your vital organs and move energy through every chakra. When you’re not on a biking mission, come back for the café, boutique, spa, or yoga class.
Now, you’re on your way to your Rock Bottom Ranch destination. Enjoy the cruise. The Rio Grande Trail crosses Main Street where you can enjoy a nice flat ride towards the Catherine Store bridge. Younger riders may need a break. After the bridge, you’ll see a short path down to the river. Eat a snack and cool off. We love watching fly fisherman from here and often see our friends rafting by. If it’s hot you can even take a dip.
Once you get to Rock Bottom Ranch, you can do a self-guided tour and, depending on the time of the year, you might get lucky and spot some baby goats or pigs. There are wetland and farm trails, and a playground for the littles. Have a picnic in the grass by the pond or inside the open-air barn.
Our daughter loved being in the “Little Ranchers” program and then in summer camps when she got older. RBR serves as the mid-valley hub for Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, offering agricultural education, wildlands preservation, sustainable agriculture. The farm grows produce and hosts fabulous, intimate, and thoughtful farm-to-table dinners in the summer.
After you’ve enjoyed the beauty that is RBR, cruise back to town and stop at Carbondale Clay Center. Check out their current exhibit or their unique pottery in the pop-up shop sponsored by the Artstream Nomadic Gallery. CCC hosts some of the Valley’s finest potters and offers a residency program with a rotating gallery. CCC keeps our town fun and lively and my shelves chock full of some of the prettiest cups, bowls, and vases you’ve ever seen. A great place to grab a gift.
Take a short detour from Main Street. Pedal one block up Second Street to KDNK. This is our local public-access radio station, an anchor in the community. Take a selfie in front of the famous totem pole outside of the studio.
Make a point to stop at Carbondale Arts and the Launchpad’s R2 Gallery. Showcasing local artists, this is my favorite place to shop for unique gifts or gift myself. You’ll find jewelry, books, pottery, candles, puzzles, art, chocolate, and more.
Way to go! You’ve made it to Batch. You biked 12 miles plus a few loops around town and you deserve a frosty adult beverage at what our staff and locals are calling “Batch 3.0.” My husband Chase and I recently reopened after making the difficult decision to close for the winter due to COVID. During the closure, we finalized the sale of Roaring Fork Beer Company. This bittersweet moment allowed us to start a whole new concept for Batch – the same vibe with a whole new full bar menu – with cocktails on draft, plus Batched, a killer beer menu from our favorite breweries, and Colorado wines from truly rad makers.
Our seven-year-old helped name a lineup of fancy and fun mocktails for kids (and adults). “Princess Poppy”, (a hibiscus lemonade) or “The Weasley” (Thyme-Ginger Ale) the “Cutie Dog,” (House Blood Orange Soda) named after our dog, Townes.
Chase has always dreamed of running either a pizza or BBQ place (since we’re native Austin, Texans). After exploring the old-world traditional ways of crafting Neapolitan pizzas, we knew this was the perfect culinary addition. We make a secret 3-day-rise crust following the old-world Neapolitan tradition with a “Carbondale riff,” using local seasonal ingredients, and also offer a delicious vegan option.
MEET OUR LOCAL FRIENDS
MP’s 2021 STAYCATION HOSTS: