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Colorado
A few pointers.
1) Drink A Lot!!! you are at a much higher altitude  than your body is used to and there is usually 0% humidity, this means you can easily dehydrate! and visitors often do!
2) Use sunscreen! being that you are that much closer to the sun, you get sunburnt that much faster, and 0% humidity means that it feels cooler than it actually is out.
3) when going to/up the mountains bring sweatshirts and other warm clothes, even on a scorcher of a summer day it can be freezing and windy on top of a mountain.




Denver
There are three jewish areas which are part of denver they form a rough triangle roughly 20 minute drive from one another so they kind of feel like three seperate cities.
West side: is the yeshivish neighborhood, home to the Yeshiva, the Bais Yaakov, the Kollel, 60-80 families, the oldest shul in denver (over 120 years old and only one currently on the west side) the Bronco's stadium, and quite a few homeless people.Not much else noteworthy for the vacationer. There are no jewish stores there and the bulk of stores that do exist there are pawn shops and used car lots, Oh yeah and retail marijuana shops! Sloans lake is a beautiful lake half a block from most of the jewish neighborhood, roughly 3 miles around you can get some nice views of the mountains over the lake, but it isn't inside the eruv and certainly not worthy of a special trip.

SouthEast/Greenwood village: Is a relatively new part of Denver, something like 10-20 years old the community is largely a kiruv community in all stages of growth centered around the only shul Aish. There is also a decent group of Bnai Torah who live there as well. The SouthEast is an upscale waspy suburbia and the stores and citizens are generally more upscale as well.
They have a pretty good frozen Yogurt shop called Yogurt Yuphoria which is certified by the scroll k (the local and very reputable hechsher) but is mostly cholov stam. They do have some sorbet and sometimes pareve frozen yogurts that are labeled "dairy equipment" and are surprisingly good, you can also get some parve razzles and the like. They close at 930PM. Also the King Soopers nearby(a grocery chain which is part of the whole ralph's/kroger thing) has a small kosher meat section, kosher product section and almost entirely kosher fresh bakery (note most things are cholov stam!).They are open either to 12PM or are 24hrs.

East Side: is currently the largest and fastest growing part of Denver, here is where you will find almost all of the jewish/kosher amenities. The East side is a diverse crowd but the bulk of it is modern orthodox.
 
The Shuls:
EDOS (East Denver Orthodox Synogogue)is made up of an older crowd, very few young people, and is modern orthodox.
DAT (Denver Acadaemy of Torah) is a shul inside a school. Here is where the vast majority of the 20 and 30 somethings daven, it is a modern orthodox shul and is strongly zionist.
BMH-BJ (bais medrash hagodol-beth joseph) is technically an orthodox shul as it is part of the OU, but they don't have a mechitza and most of it's mispallelim drive to shul on shabbos. They do have a smaller minyan in a side room known as sharai simcha or "the mechitza minyan" which does have mechitza and it's mispallelim are local.
Bais Yisroel/Beit Uriel/TRI are three shuls housed in one building, Beit Uriel is the local Sephardic Shul, TRI is an old minyan for russian jews and Bais Yisroel is the yeshivish shul on the East side, they recently renovated and is gorgeous and spacious,with almost a intown feel.

The Restaurants:
ESKD (East Side Kosher Deli) http://www.eastsidekosherdeli.com/ is the only fleishig restaurant in town. It is located in the back of the only kosher store in town. In the store they have very nice meat and dairy departments. (although if you are just looking for a steak to grill you might to better off going to trader joes and getting one of their luscious teva's black angus kosher rib steaks). They also carry a full line of heimish products and wines, they are both a bit overpriced, but not crazy for this far out of town. They also have a full delicatessen/bakery in the store, their coldcuts are usually excellent. They close at 9PM.

Back to the restaurant (literally). They have a lunch menu which is significantly cheaper for many of the same things. Certain nights of the week they sell sushi which i haven't tried but hear is all right. The ambiance is not to great but the food is very good for the price (18-35 a main). I would suggest  the sesame chicken, steak fajita's, cowboy burger, and onion ring brick, they are all delicious. They have some wierd things that you may like or hate for instance a burger with pastrami jammed between two greasy Latkes etc. Read the menu carefully. Also their shwarma is not up to par.Wine by the glass is surprisingly cheap for upscale restaurant standards, but ask when it was opened. They don't get a lot of wine orders.

Brooklyn Pizza http://brooklynpizzadenver.com/ They have some really good pizza and some really out-of-the box toppings like fake pepperoni (which supposedly tastes legit), smoked lox and capers, mac and cheese, and chocolate and riccotto cheese, if you are into that type of thing.All the above are made to order so give yourself some extra time. Their fries are good and the calzones are beyond enormous (enough for two). At peak times there will be a wait and a dearth of seats.They close at 9 PM and are open late on Motzoi Shabbos.
Next door is a King Soopers with a pretty big kosher item section (3 small isles) a small fresh meat and dairy section and a fresh bakery that is kosher but mostly cholov stam. Across the side street is a liquor shop called the grapevine which has a pretty large selection of kosher wine at a fair price, they are open very late.

Rosenberg Kosher (formerly The Bagel Store) http://www.rosenbergskosher.com/ Note, open to the public on Fridays and holidays. makes solid bagels and challah, they also make amazing doughnuts but only sell them on fridays, and for some odd reason they get stale very very quickly, so enjoy them right away.

High Point Creamery: https://www.highpointcreamery.com/ Ice cream shop across the street from EDOS. Small batch ice cream shop with unique flavors.

Hotels:

Colorado
has enough amazing sites for one to visit one a day for several years and not run out. I have spoken to avid hikers and natralists who live in Denver for 20-30 years and gathered that they havn't hit all the popular spots yet and are constantly finding new places. Below you will find a long but limited list of popular trips, anyone will have different favorites, enjoy!


Day Trips from Denver

Children friendly short trips from Denver:

Tiny Town- a little boring, but nice stop for little kids. They charge $5 for adults and $3 for kids above 2. This is about 25 minutes from Denver, it is a miniature kid sized city! All this houses and stores are built with great detail and there are about 10 of them the kids can climb into and peer out the windows and such. It also has a child sized railroad that drives around the town for an additional 2$ a pop. When it gets boring there is a nice playground and picnic area.The whole town is set in a scenic locale in the foothills and has small creek meandering through it. I'd say it would be a nice 1-2 hour trip (not including traveling for 1-6 year olds)
St. Mary's Glacier(town of Alice): is about 50 minutes from Denver. It is a easy/moderate short hike (hour round trip) with a rewarding view on top. A great day trip idea for those who don't want to work too hard to see the views. The top has a really pretty clear lake fed from a glacier melt with a mountain view surrounding it. Really nice!!
Red Rocks: closest really scenic mountainy spot to denver. Beautiful red rock formation and kid friendly hiking trails, 25 minutes from Denver and nice for adults and slightly older kids as well (figure 3 years old and up)
Lariat Loop: scenic/historic 40 mile drive with stops all around golden and lakewood colorado. (most stops are western/cowboy themed)
Falcon Ridge short hike/amazing view
Buffalo Bill's Grave and museum - see @Yehuda's TR below
Coors factory tour-see @Yehuda's TR below
Roxbourough national park: A short half hour drive from Denver, this park has huge striking dramatic red stones (couple hundred feet high) the park is set in the middle of wild country and warns that bears and rattle snakes are very often seen, while the scenery is some of the best this close to Denver, the trails are a somewhat distant from the rocks (50-500 feet) and i wouldn't feel comfortable going off trail with all the rattlesnake warnings. This kinda puts a damper on the feel.
Lookout mountain-see @Yehuda's TR below

Boulder- 45 minutes north of Denver has quite a few family friendly trip options
Celestial Seasons tea factory tour: interesting and fun, with free tea sampling. Entering the "Mint room" is a highlight you won't soon forget, watching the fully automated factory whirl is remarkable and exciting. Avoid going on a Sunday because the factory floor is not on and you lose that experience. You can also purchase all their discontinued teas in their tea store.
Eben G. Fine Park: is a nice place to eat a lunch dip your feet in the river or just relax a bit, there is also another gorgeous park across the street but i can't remember the name.
Pearl Street: get a taste of the eccentric lifestyle of boulder, explore the stores and watch street performers. You are guaranteed to be amazed and amused by the eclectic locale!
Breweries: Colorado is home to dozens of microbreweries, of which quite a few are located in Boulder. Consider a short tour to see the less commercial side of beer brewing.One example is Avery brewery.
Eldorado Canyon: Is not in boulder but right near it. It is a beautiful site with a supposedly "stroller friendly" hiking trail. I took my double citymini up there and about halfway up had to hide it in a bush and continue with both kids on my shoulders, that being said it is a fairly easy stunning short trail which you could take a jogging stroller on if you were so inclined. There are often people crock climbing hundreds of feet in the air which makes for a fascinating watch.

Longer day trips from Denver

Mt. Evans: about an hour west of Denver.Then you begin the long drive up to the top a 14er (one of America's highest paved roads) the trip up is exhilerating and the switchbacks are steep with huge drops on either side, you pass two incredibly beautiful lakes en route and usually some mountain goats and big horn sheep. As you get higher it gets colder and it is not unusual for there to be a hailstorm or even snow in the middle of a 100 degree day in Denver, so bring a sweatshirt. The view from the top is astounding (unless you are unlucky enough to arrive on a foggy day on top).

Estes Park: is the city at the base of Rocky Mountain National park and is set by a large lake with great views and a plethora of local activities and interesting shops. It is an hour and half north of Denver
Rocky Mountain National Park: It is large enough to spend a few weeks exploring(more than 400 square miles!!), one can easily spend two days there, although there are no upscale hotels nearby. There are two main scenic drives, The view from Trail Ridge Road is arguably the the most beautiful astounding sight in Colorado and is not to be missed! Old Fall River Road is a harrowing winding one way dirt road that will constantly have you on the edge of your seat and affords you rawer less commercialized views of the park. You can take Old Fall River Road to the peak at the Alpine visitor center and take Trail Ridge Road back down the mountain. If you're looking for a hike geared for Intermediate/Advanced hikers, Flattop mountain is a great trail ~3 hours hike up, ~1.5 to get back down.
Peak to Peak Scenic Byway https://estes-park.com/peak-peak-scenic-byway

Colorado Springs area: - 1-1.25 hrs south of Denver
Garden of the G-ds: https://www.gardenofgods.com/ Is a mind bogglingly beautiful park with the same redstone rocks found in red rocks and roxborough, the important difference is that you are allowed to and encouraged to climb on the rock in the Garden of the gods, this makes the view personal and significantly more fun, you can spend hours exploring and not get bored! (tip: don't spend much time in the first official parking area, it is all paved but not accessible or nearly as much fun as some of the other spots in this park, park in one of the pull offs later in the park or especially at the balancing rock at the end and explore! You won't be disappointed!
US Air Force Academy: https://www.academyadmissions.com/visit-the-academy/self-guided-tours/visitor-center-information/
Cave of the Winds: https://caveofthewinds.com/
Pikes Peak: https://www.pikes-peak.com/ Amazing views at 14,115 FT. You can also bike down from the peak with various tour companies.
Royal Gorge Bride & Park: https://royalgorgebridge.com/
Royal Gorge Railroad: https://royalgorgeroute.com/
Manitou Springs: https://manitousprings.org/
Manitou Incline: http://www.manitouincline.com/
White water rafting on the Arkansas river (royal gorge or buena vista)
brainard lake
Kruner rock hike

Vail Area:

Vail:

Activities:
1. biking down from vail pass
2. Zip Lining
3. GONDOLA

Shul:
Chabad of Vail http://www.jewishvail.com/

Food:
Kosher Vail - Run by the Chabad of Vail NOTE:CLOSED FOR SUMMER 2018

Glenwood Springs:
1. Hanging Lake https://www.visitglenwood.com/things-to-do/hanging-lake/
2. Glenwood/Glenwood Caverns https://www.glenwoodcaverns.com/

To be continued...
If you have any questions or need any help please feel free to PM steeeveknowsbest and i'll get back to you ASAP

TRs
@Yehuda Summer 2014 (trip divided up by day into several posts, so keep reading!)

@Yehuda's Trips to Denver
Something Fishy's TR of Rocky mountain national park:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=997.msg858474#msg858474

CGR

Post 859 is Friars500 one week itinerary for his group 
« Last edited by cgr on September 12, 2019, 02:32:59 PM »

Author Topic: Colorado Master Thread  (Read 133066 times)

Offline Denverite

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #855 on: August 29, 2016, 12:36:44 PM »
I'm trying to plan a short 2 day trip into the mountains for Sunday and Monday of labor day. Plan on going Saturday night and returning Monday evening/night. Looking for hiking and outdoor activities. Will have my 1.5 year old baby but I have a hiking backpack to carry her in. Looking for opinions on what city to go to, where to stay, and what hikes to do.

You can stay in an SPG property in Vail or Avon or the Park Hyatt in Beaver Creek and maybe do Hanging Lake hike one day.  For only two days, I wouldn't bring any food, can eat a hot meal in Denver on the way up and back and get sandwich and breakfast stuff in the grocery store in the mountains.

Offline mike18

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #856 on: August 30, 2016, 02:39:35 PM »
Im going end of summer with kids. I put together this list of attractions I planning on hitting. It's a mix of nature and more kid friendly places.


Mount Evans
Geoegetown Loop

Rocky mountain national park
   Trail Ridge Road
   Old Fall River Road
   Horseback riding

Maroon bells
Independence Pass

Vail Mountain
Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park
Biking
Whitewater Rafting in Glenwood Springs

Anything musts Im missing?


how many time do i need to give for Mount Evans

Offline Mountain Man

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #857 on: August 31, 2016, 10:53:10 PM »
Quote from: JTZ link=topic=10531.msg1695873
If you never had to eat crow then you lived one boring life.

Offline Denverite

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #858 on: August 31, 2016, 11:06:57 PM »
Seems to be a pretty good deal for Georgetown Loop railroad. 2 adult and 2 children for 38.69. New accounts get $10 off and there may be other coupons.
https://www.livingsocial.com/cities/209-boulder-county/deals/1611306-adult-and-child-coach-tickets-to-historic-railroad?afsrc=1&cvosrc=email.blast-us.digest_funandevents&utm_campaign=digest_funandevents&utm_medium=email&utm_source=blast

That's a great deal.  Went last year with visiting family for Chol HaMoed Sukkot and it cost a small fortune...

Offline Friars500

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #859 on: September 15, 2016, 12:49:22 PM »
This was our one week itinerary. Note - there are so many other options and although we hit some amazing spots, we certainly could have done a completely different itinerary for the entire week and still missed tons. So know this if you are going for a week - you will miss something.  You cannot do all the musts in a week, so don't feel bad.  Also, this itinerary, while it does have some moderately difficult things, was made with having a large group ranging in age from mid 60's to 5 and a pregnant women.  In other words, the activities were not extreme and were done with a slower pace in mind.  We spent 2 - 3 hours at each spot.  You can either spend more time at a spot or cram more activities in.  Be aware that on any given day the initial drive could've been 2 - 3 hours and was generally an hour from activity to activity - so if you plan to go from place to place be prepared for a lot of driving.       

(We stayed in Frisco using VRBO for the first part and in Vail for shabbos)

Sunday - arrived late, picked up dinner at East Side Kosher Deli. (TIP: Denver Airport has been growing busier each year. Our wait at Avis was longer than any other airport location I have ever been too.  Whatever rental you use, Denver is a location where the loyalty program (like Avis Preferred) will save you a lot of time.)  Picked up other provisions in shop part of ESKD, including kosher/chalav yisrael dairy products and meat for grilling.  Picked up groceries in Kings Sooper and drove to rental unit in Frisco.   

Monday - Lake Dillon area.  Rented pontoon ($200 for 2 hours) and went hiking all in same area. Relaxing, not intense at all.

Tuesday - Glenwood Springs area. On this day, even though I have several activities listed, unlike the later days, all of Glenwood Springs activities are within a 15 - 20 minute drive of each other.

Hanging Lake Trail Hike (free) - moderately difficult hike but we all made it, so very doable.  The Hanging Lake and the later waterfall are stunning so well worth it.  Be aware that this trail is very popular and parking fills up.  If you get there much after 9, you will have ti wait for a spot and even run the risk of the rangers closing the lot if they feel too many people are waiting, so get there early!

Whitewater Rafting ($50 - $60 per adult) - There are several options throughout Colorado for rafting.  Glenwood Springs had family friendly rafting and was fairly calm (Class 2 and 3s).  If you are looking for mostly Class 4 or even a 5, you probably want to go to a different area (we did do one class 4).  Even in Glenwood Springs itself, there are several options.  We used BlueSky Adventures.  They were professional and their times worked well for us.  After we finished rafting, we walked around Glenwood Springs a little. (If your group is a little more time conscious, my suggestion would be to get to Hanging Lake around 7:30, not only will this help you with parking but it will get you to rafting (or whatever you second activity is) earlier and will probably allow you a third activity also.  In any case, if you are not to tired after your second/third activity, you can go to one of the many hot spring pools in Glenwood Springs and enjoy a relaxing evening.

Wednesday - Mount Evans Drive and Hikes ($15 for parking for the stay)  At the summit 14,000 + feet there are fantastic views and one of the highest point in the lower 48.  Drive is wonderful (go slow) and there are several small hikes to enjoy.  Hike is moderate and only tiring at all due to elevation - not terrain.

St Mary's Glacier (free) - snow in July.  Another fantastic hike with slightly difficult terrain as it is very rocky.  But the best part is not just the view but the ability to make a snowman, throw snowballs or go sledding in middle of the Summer! Probably not as fun during winter.

We did not get to Golden but with better timing one could go to Golden Colorado on this day as well.  Besides for several hikes and other activities in Golden, relax at the Coors Brewery with a free Tour and several samples of various Coors beer including fresh Blue Moon!

Thursday - Colorado Springs area.  Royal Gorge Park and Bridge (20 per person).  The park had a huge fire in 2013 and they are slowly rebuilding - but the bridge walk, Gondola ride and view are certainly worth the drive.  Each summer they plan to re-open, build or re-build several of the attractions.  I regret that the incline down is no longer available but they hope to reopen a path to the bottom by Summer 2018.  Also, besides for the Park and Bridge area, there are many other attractions that can be found in the general Royal Gorge area, including very good rafting. (Note - we were still staying in Frisco the previous night and it was a fairly long drive to the Gorge and then to Vail where we spent the weekend.  Denver is much more convenient to the Gorge, so if you are staying in Denver or getting to Denver, factor this in.

Garden of the Gods (free) - about 45 - 60 minutes from the Royal Gorge towards Denver.  A beautiful huge park with redrocks, climbing, hiking and beautiful views.  This is your chance to get real close and actually climb redrocks.  You can rent bikes or segways and take it all around the park.  An absolute must,  $9 per person if you go on the trolley tour.  Not necessary but nice.  Also, there is a European style castle just down the block from the Garden's visitor center that is worth checking out if you like old castles.

We then headed to Denver for dinner at ESKD, picked up food and provisions and drive to Vail for Friday/Shabbos.

Friday - Glenwood Caverns (cost varies depends on which package you buy- look for groupons on this) - a fun amusement park with interesting rides due to the mountain (like alpine slide down the mountain, skycoaster and swings over the side of the mountain).  It also has a gondola up the mountain (weather permitting) and 3 different cave tours (2 regular and one extreme caving for extra cost).  The cave tours were enjoyable as was the park.  If the rides don't tempt you (but they are fun) you can certainly add this to your day in Glenwood Springs as the third activity and do something different (If you are staying in Denver for Shabbos or not in the Vail area, you definitely should not come here on Friday and do something more local.  We only did this Friday because we were in Vail for Shabbos which is relatively close by).

Shabbos - Davened at Chabad (note: Friday night depends on the week, so call ahead!).  Walked around Lionshead Village and Vail Village, including Betty Ford Alpine Gardens/For Park.  Not the most exciting thing - but hey it's Shabbos so very relaxing.

Sunday - had early flight.     

Offline Ryan the Yid

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #860 on: January 07, 2017, 09:28:52 PM »
Breckenridge lift passes; I have looked everywhere online and have had no luck. Where can I find reasonably priced lift passes for Martin Luther King weekend?

TIA

Offline Mountain Man

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #861 on: January 07, 2017, 09:35:43 PM »
Breckenridge lift passes; I have looked everywhere online and have had no luck. Where can I find reasonably priced lift passes for Martin Luther King weekend?

TIA
What is reasonable?

I believe it will be difficult. Vail Resorts changed their pricing scheme to encourage people to buy Epic passes. I believe Epic pass sales have ended for the season. Maybe find someone who has a pass and use their SWAF (ski with a friend) tickets which are $128.

http://www.snow.com/epic-pass/pass-benefits/swaf.aspx?cmpid=PARRT00046#/Vail

Another option is if price is a consideration maybe consider Copper Mountain. Shell gas stations usually runs a bogo promotion this time of year if you buy ten gallons of gas.

Quote from: JTZ link=topic=10531.msg1695873
If you never had to eat crow then you lived one boring life.

Offline Denverite

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #862 on: January 07, 2017, 11:55:51 PM »
Breckenridge lift passes; I have looked everywhere online and have had no luck. Where can I find reasonably priced lift passes for Martin Luther King weekend?

TIA

Even if you have an Epic pass they are restricted in Breckenridge over MLK...it's just not a time to get discounted rates in Breck.  I agree with Mountian Man, if you are staying there maybe get a pass for Copper or Keystone instead, for less.

Offline Ryan the Yid

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #863 on: January 08, 2017, 12:54:42 AM »
Even if you have an Epic pass they are restricted in Breckenridge over MLK...it's just not a time to get discounted rates in Breck.  I agree with Mountian Man, if you are staying there maybe get a pass for Copper or Keystone instead, for less.

Do the passes from Copper and Keystone transfer? I know some resorts give reciprocity.

Offline Ryan the Yid

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #864 on: January 08, 2017, 12:55:58 AM »
What is reasonable?

I believe it will be difficult. Vail Resorts changed their pricing scheme to encourage people to buy Epic passes. I believe Epic pass sales have ended for the season. Maybe find someone who has a pass and use their SWAF (ski with a friend) tickets which are $128.

http://www.snow.com/epic-pass/pass-benefits/swaf.aspx?cmpid=PARRT00046#/Vail

Another option is if price is a consideration maybe consider Copper Mountain. Shell gas stations usually runs a bogo promotion this time of year if you buy ten gallons of gas.

Appreciate the info. In hind site I should have bought a season pass to Mountain creek and upgraded to a Max pass.

Offline Denverite

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #865 on: January 08, 2017, 12:56:35 AM »
Do the passes from Copper and Keystone transfer? I know some resorts give reciprocity.

No separate systems.  Keystone is part of Epic (with Breck, Vail, Beaver Creek)


Offline Mountain Man

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #867 on: January 10, 2017, 11:46:12 AM »
Ski Hooky and BOGO offer for Loveland if anyone is interested. Only valid for select days in January 2017.
Quote from: JTZ link=topic=10531.msg1695873
If you never had to eat crow then you lived one boring life.

Offline normathej

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #868 on: January 17, 2017, 03:35:00 PM »
Anybody have any experience on tying to get a minyan for a weekday at Chabad in Vail?  They have a "minyan tracker" but I'm wondering how often they actually get up to 10....

Offline avromie7

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Re: Colorado Master Thread
« Reply #869 on: January 17, 2017, 04:16:23 PM »
Anybody have any experience on tying to get a minyan for a weekday at Chabad in Vail?  They have a "minyan tracker" but I'm wondering how often they actually get up to 10....
Call the rabbi, he's a nice guy and he'll tell you what he expects
I wonder what people who type "u" instead of "you" do with all their free time.