Celebrate Lakewood's 50th Anniversary


It's time to celebrate 50 amazing years as a city! And while Lakewood's incorporation day is technically June 24, 2019, we’re celebrating with the community all year.

Lakewood's 50th Anniversary is a time to honor our community’s unique history, diverse residents, and those who laid the foundation for incorporation and paved the way for the city's sense of community, culture and inclusiveness. We’ll highlight the early families and visionary leaders, entrepreneurs, staff, volunteers, and of course, the residents who together create and strengthen the community fabric that is Lakewood.

Here’s to celebrating our city’s rich past and looking ahead to the next 50 years. We hope you take a look around and join the celebration by participating in all of the activities on this site:


It's time to celebrate 50 amazing years as a city! And while Lakewood's incorporation day is technically June 24, 2019, we’re celebrating with the community all year.

Lakewood's 50th Anniversary is a time to honor our community’s unique history, diverse residents, and those who laid the foundation for incorporation and paved the way for the city's sense of community, culture and inclusiveness. We’ll highlight the early families and visionary leaders, entrepreneurs, staff, volunteers, and of course, the residents who together create and strengthen the community fabric that is Lakewood.

Here’s to celebrating our city’s rich past and looking ahead to the next 50 years. We hope you take a look around and join the celebration by participating in all of the activities on this site:

  • Lakewood's 50 Anniversary book available for purchase

    3 months ago
    Lakewood front cover new

    The city of Lakewood is excited to announce the release of our book, "A Half-Century of Transformation: Lakewood, Colorado, 1969–2019." This 160-page limited-edition volume details how the city grew, the vision the community established for the city, the abundant recreational and cultural amenities, and the business base that combine to support a consummate Colorado lifestyle. Don’t miss your chance to purchase your copy today!

    Order a book for $34.95 online or in person at the following locations:

    The city of Lakewood is excited to announce the release of our book, "A Half-Century of Transformation: Lakewood, Colorado, 1969–2019." This 160-page limited-edition volume details how the city grew, the vision the community established for the city, the abundant recreational and cultural amenities, and the business base that combine to support a consummate Colorado lifestyle. Don’t miss your chance to purchase your copy today!

    Order a book for $34.95 online or in person at the following locations:

    • 20th Century Emporium at the Lakewood Heritage Center, 801 S. Yarrow St.
    • Lakewood recreation centers
    • Lakewood Cultural Center, 470 S. Allison Parkway.
    • Community Resources Department front desk, 2nd floor, 480 S. Allison Parkway.

    Please call 303-987-7848 for more information.

  • 20th Century Emporium now has 50th Anniversary products

    3 months ago
    50th anniversary collection


    Visit the 20th Century Emporium at the Lakewood Heritage Center, 801 S. Yarrow St., to find all of your 50th anniversary items.

    The museum store has the following items available for sale:

    • Stainless steel water bottle, $13.50
    • Campfire mug, $12.50
    • Shot glass, $7
    • Magnets, $5.50
    • Collectible ornament, $15.99
    The 20th Century Emporium is open 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday and noon–4 p.m Sunday.


    Visit the 20th Century Emporium at the Lakewood Heritage Center, 801 S. Yarrow St., to find all of your 50th anniversary items.

    The museum store has the following items available for sale:

    • Stainless steel water bottle, $13.50
    • Campfire mug, $12.50
    • Shot glass, $7
    • Magnets, $5.50
    • Collectible ornament, $15.99
    The 20th Century Emporium is open 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday and noon–4 p.m Sunday.

  • Three ways to get involved in Lakewood's 50th Anniversary Celebration

    5 months ago
    Col 50 sized down gold 4

    Whether you’re a history buff, trivia master or art exhibit aficionado, there are opportunities for everyone to join Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary celebration! We’re using both traditional and online ways for residents to participate in Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary to make sure anyone and everyone is included.

    1. Go online

    Whether you’re a history buff, trivia master or art exhibit aficionado, there are opportunities for everyone to join Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary celebration! We’re using both traditional and online ways for residents to participate in Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary to make sure anyone and everyone is included.

    1. Go online

    • Participate in the digital time capsule: Help make history by telling future residents and leaders what’s important with an entry to the digital time capsule for 2069.
    • Take part in weekly trivia questions about Lakewood.
    • Receive a prize by completing the historical scavenger hunt.
    • Read about Lakewood’s incorporation back in 1969.
    • Watch videos covering the city’s history.
    • Learn about the “50 Objects for Lakewood's 50th Anniversary” project, making the city’s museum items available for viewing online.

    2. Attend events and in-person activities

    • Be on the lookout for surprise pop-up parties around Lakewood with cake and giveaways.
    • Visit the Lakewood Heritage Center at 801 S. Yarrow St. every month for a new special exhibit about Lakewood’s incorporation in 1969. Participate in hands-on farming activities, see photos of favorite 1970s restaurants and listen to audio histories of former Lakewood mayors.
    • Check out “Three Views: Contemporary Work by Two Generations of Lakewood Artists Charles Parson, Collin Parson and Devon Parson,” a Lakewood family kicking off the 50th anniversary art exhibition series.
    • Snag giveaways at your favorite annual city events like Cider Days, Rockin’ Block Party, Earth Day, Lakewood Lights, Big Boom Bash and more.

    3. Get social

    • Join the celebration on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #Lakewood50.
    • See what’s trending, keep an eye out for contests and show us how you’re celebrating by uploading a photo or video using the celebration hashtag on your social media.


    And there’s no need to wait – there’s plenty of celebration to do now!


  • Weekly trivia answers

    9 months ago
    Trivia question mark

    If you enjoy a brain-busting question like we do, make sure you visit this site every Monday to answer a Lakewood-related trivia question in the section labeled "Weekly trivia." These weekly quizzes will include questions on Lakewood's incorporation, history, city services, community hot spots and more.

    Oct. 29

    Q: Who was the first mayor of Lakewood?

    A: James Jeff "Jim" Richey.

    Nov. 5:

    Q: How many patrol agents did the Lakewood Police Department have when it was first established in 1970?

    A: 30.

    Nov. 12

    Q: How many square miles was Lakewood after incorporation in 1969?

    A: 26.

    Nov. 19

    ...


    If you enjoy a brain-busting question like we do, make sure you visit this site every Monday to answer a Lakewood-related trivia question in the section labeled "Weekly trivia." These weekly quizzes will include questions on Lakewood's incorporation, history, city services, community hot spots and more.

    Oct. 29

    Q: Who was the first mayor of Lakewood?

    A: James Jeff "Jim" Richey.

    Nov. 5:

    Q: How many patrol agents did the Lakewood Police Department have when it was first established in 1970?

    A: 30.

    Nov. 12

    Q: How many square miles was Lakewood after incorporation in 1969?

    A: 26.

    Nov. 19

    Q: How many large plow trucks does Street Maintenance operate during any given snow storm?

    A: 28.

    Nov. 26

    Q: What did the Belmar area replace before becoming Belmar?

    A: The Villa Italia Mall.

    Dec. 3

    Q: How many tennis courts does the City have?

    A: 34.

    Dec. 10

    Q: On average, how many performances and events are held in the Lakewood Cultural Center theater each year?

    A: 186 performances.

    Dec. 17

    Q: How many creeks are in Bear Creek Lake Park?

    A: Four.

    Dec. 25

    No question in observance of the holiday.

    Dec. 31

    No question in observance of the holiday.

    Jan. 7
    Q: How many pages was the original city of Lakewood budget?

    A: 15 pages.

    Jan. 14

    Q: How many neighborhoods in Lakewood are certified as Outstanding Sustainable Neighborhoods?
    A: Eight neighborhoods. The Sustainable Neighborhoods Program started in Lakewood in 2012 as a way to encourage and support community sustainability projects. The eight Outstanding neighborhoods are Applewood, Belmar, Eiber, Green Mountain, Lake Lochwood Village, Morse Park, South of 6th and Southern Gables. Neighborhood volunteers working in the program have engaged over 13,000 Lakewood residents through workshops, events and projects.

    Jan. 21
    Q: How many parks are included in the 40West ArtLine?
    A: Three parks: Mountair, Aviation and Walker Branch parks.

    Jan. 28
    Q: Which was the city’s first park?
    A: Morse Park.

    Feb. 4
    Q: In what year did the city start using smartphones to better support the community?
    A: The answer is 2010. City Council members first started using smartphones in 2010, using the iPhone 3 model; since then, the city has continued to ensure that technology is a key consideration in how we support the Community.

    Feb. 11
    Q: What was the Lakewood Police Department previously known as?
    A: The answer is Lakewood Department of Public Safety.

    Feb. 18
    Q: What year did the Lakewood Cultural Center open?
    A: The answer is 2000.

    Feb. 25
    Q: How many city halls have there been since the city incorporated?
    A:The answer is four.

    March 4
    Q: Where was the 1st City Council meetings held?
    A: The answer is Lakewood High School.

    March 11
    Q: How many objects are in the Lakewood Heritage Center's museum collection?
    A: The answer is 40,000-50,000.

    March 18
    Q: Where was the badge located on the first Lakewood Police uniforms?
    A: The answer is it was carried in their wallet, so there was no badge on the uniform shirt.

    March 25
    Q:

    In the yard behind the Stone House, what activity are the two statues participating in?

    A: The answer is fishing.

    April 1
    No question this week.

    April 8
    Q: What animal is there a sign warning patrons about in Mountainside Park?
    A: Mountain Lion.

    April 15
    Q: Where was the 1st City Hall located?
    A:1580 Yarrow St.

    April 22-29
    Q: How many City Clerks has Lakewood had?
    A: Three.

    May 6
    Q: What is the name of the Bird Statue located on the north end of Kountze Lake in Belmar Park?
    A: Morning Mist.

    May 13-May 28
    Q: In what year were residents able to use a city of Lakewood online system?
    A: The answer is 2001, and it intended to improve our citizens’ experience when signing up for classes at our recreational facilities.

    May 28
    Q: How large was the original Rooney Family homestead that was established in the 1860s?
    A: The answer is 12,000 acres.

    June 3
    Q: After the incorporation of Jefferson City what date was the election held for city officials?
    A: The answer is Aug. 26, 1969.

    June 10
    Q: What piece of the original house can still be seen in Addenbrooke Park?
    A: The answer is the fireplace.

    June 17
    Q: What was Lakewood’s first zero waste event?
    A: The answer is the City of Lakewood’s first large-scale coordinated effort to reduce waste at a community event was the 2011 Cider Days event. Volunteers sorted through bags to divert recyclables from the waste stream.

    June 24
    Q: What were the boundaries of Lakewood originally drawn on?
    A: The answer is boundaries for a new city were drawn on a basement ping pong table in the home of James Jeff "Jim" Richey, chairman of the Citizens for Incorporation, who later became the first mayor of Lakewood.

    July 1
    Q: The Family Services Division’s Early Childhood Education program offers five Head Start Classrooms for 90 children ages 3 to 5. As a part of the Head Start program, children are provided breakfast, lunch, and snacks each day through a grant from the Child and Adult Care Food Program. How many total meals did the Head Start program provide during the 2017-2018 school year?
    A: The answer is 38,704.

    July 8
    Q: When was the first subdivision of land in what is now Lakewood?
    A: The answer is 1889.

    July 15
    Q: Between the Fox Hollow and Homestead Golf Courses, the city is able to offer exceptional golf opportunities to the community. How many total holes of golf are offered between the two courses?
    A: Answer coming soon!
  • A glimpse into Lakewood's past

    9 months ago
    Lakewood 24004763995
    When the city of Lakewood was incorporated almost 50 years ago in 1969, it was a remarkable task of weaving a community together from neighborhoods with a strong sense of identity founded on decades of residents working together to build schools, lay pipelines or install other improvements for themselves.

    The name Lakewood originated long before the city existed, and it came from a subdivision that William Loveland, owner of the Colorado Central Railroad, established in 1889 near West Colfax Avenue and Harlan Street. In the early years, residents in the area ranched, raised turkeys and operated dairies....

    When the city of Lakewood was incorporated almost 50 years ago in 1969, it was a remarkable task of weaving a community together from neighborhoods with a strong sense of identity founded on decades of residents working together to build schools, lay pipelines or install other improvements for themselves.

    The name Lakewood originated long before the city existed, and it came from a subdivision that William Loveland, owner of the Colorado Central Railroad, established in 1889 near West Colfax Avenue and Harlan Street. In the early years, residents in the area ranched, raised turkeys and operated dairies. In the 1940s, the federal government acquired the land now known as the Federal Center, and in the decades that followed, agriculture gave way to neighborhoods, each establishing a sense of pride.

    Several efforts to incorporate into a city occurred in the 1940s and 1950s, but they failed. In 1969, fears of annexation to Denver and a lack of law enforcement resources began to concern residents, now numbering over 90,000. Boundaries for a new city were drawn on a basement pingpong table in the home of James Jeff "Jim" Richey, chairman of the Citizens for Incorporation. In June 1969, those living in neighborhoods such as Alameda, Green Mountain, Bear Creek, Applewood and Lakewood voted by more than a two-to-one margin to create a city, one of the largest incorporations of its time. Richey became mayor, but the City Council had to find offices and supplies on a shoestring budget. The city's name was soon changed from Jefferson City to Lakewood after residents favored that name in an advisory vote to the City Council, which changed the name by resolution.

    From the beginning, Lakewood's growth was positive, progressive and visionary. The Police Department became one of the first ever to require its agents to have a college degree. In 1983, Lakewood residents approved a city charter, which is essentially the city's constitution.

    What started as ranchland, turkey farms and early subdivisions of homes has become one of the largest cities in Colorado with more than 44-square miles and a population of just over 150,000. Lakewood is the third largest city in the Denver metro area and the fifth largest city in the state of Colorado. One-quarter of Lakewood’s land is dedicated to parks and open space, and the city has several major employment centers such as the Federal Center, Academy Park, Union Boulevard and the St. Anthony Medical Campus. Residents are also served by several special districts for water, sewer, fire and schools, all remnants from the early days when residents banded together to create services for themselves before the city existed.


    To help preserve Lakewood's history, the Lakewood Heritage Center is home to more than 30,000 historical objects and more than 8,000 historical photographs. These artifacts and photographs tell the story of the Lakewood, Jefferson County, the state and national and world events as they relate to Lakewood residents. These artifacts cover, but are not limited to, the history of 20th century business and technology, textiles and personal artifacts, toys, military life, domestic life and material culture. You can learn more about this important community amenity by visiting Lakewood.org/HeritageCenter.

    comment
    Ajax loader transparent
    Didn't receive confirmation?
    Seems like you are already registered, please provide the password or use a different email ID
    Submitting your comment
    Cancel
  • Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary public artist announced

    5 months ago
    Parson proposal echoesreflections
    The City of Lakewood and the Heritage, Culture & the Arts Division are pleased to announce the selection of the artwork for a new public art project in celebration of Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary. “Echoes and Reflections: Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary,” a large-scale installation of reflective metal sculptures by Collin Parson, will be placed at a site of historical significance in Addenbrooke Park this September. This public artwork will celebrate Lakewood’s unique history and diverse residents, those that laid the foundation for incorporation and paved the way for the city’s robust cultural community that exists today.

    A request for proposals was sent...

    The City of Lakewood and the Heritage, Culture & the Arts Division are pleased to announce the selection of the artwork for a new public art project in celebration of Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary. “Echoes and Reflections: Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary,” a large-scale installation of reflective metal sculptures by Collin Parson, will be placed at a site of historical significance in Addenbrooke Park this September. This public artwork will celebrate Lakewood’s unique history and diverse residents, those that laid the foundation for incorporation and paved the way for the city’s robust cultural community that exists today.

    A request for proposals was sent on July 16, 2018, which resulted in responses from more than 30 artists from across the United States. After an extensive review process, including an online public voting platform and a public art selection panel, Lakewood’s public art committee selected Parson’s proposal. The artist’s passion for the project comes from his deep connection with Lakewood. Parson is a local arts administrator, artist, curator and designer who was raised in Lakewood and has enjoyed Addenbrooke Park throughout his childhood and as an adult with his wife and children.

    The new artwork will be installed on the site where the Addenbrooke family home, constructed in 1953, once stood near the corner of South Garrison Street and West Center Avenue. The home’s fireplace, which remains standing, includes stones collected from around the world by the Addenbrooke family. Parson’s artwork is inspired by the sense of inclusion and place metaphorically exemplified by this historical landmark.

    “Echoes and Reflections” incorporates mirrored stainless steel in shapes that mimic the structure of the former home. “I hope to reflect the past and the present by recreating the echoes or fragments of the homestead, such as doors, corners and windows, that once stood as the Addenbrooke family home. By using mirror polished stainless steel, these elements would pay homage to the past, yet literally reflect the current environment and all the people who occupy it now and in the future,” said Parson.

    The artwork will be fabricated by Denver-based Demiurge. The budget for the project is $80,000 and is funded by the City of Lakewood. “Echoes and Reflections,” along with five separate temporary community arts projects made in the five distinct City Council wards of the city, will serve as a collective public celebration of the 50th anniversary of the incorporation of the City of Lakewood as well as a catalyst for positive social engagement and enhanced quality of life through the future community activities that will center around this permanent public artwork.

    Learn more about the public art project and other ways to celebrate Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary at Lakewood.org/50.

    About the Artist:
    Raised in Lakewood, Collin Parson currently serves as the director of galleries and curator for the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities. He is a former member at the historic Pirate: Contemporary Art cooperative and recently completed an artist residency at RedLine Denver. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in theater design and technology with emphasis in lighting and scene design from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and his Master of Arts in visual culture and arts administration is from Regis University in Denver. His creative work involves the control of light and color to create vivid geometric light and space works. Parson’s public artworks have been installed at sites such as Westlands Park in Greenwood Village, Central Park in Boulder and the Dairy Block alley bridge and on the University of Denver campus in Denver. More information can be found at CollinParson.com.



  • The story of Lakewood’s official song, tree and flower

    5 months ago
    Capture

    As we celebrate 50 years of Lakewood, we can’t help but reflect on our city’s past anniversary celebrations, and the last one for Lakewood’s 40th anniversary was celebrated by picking Lakewood’s official song, tree and flower.

    The city launched a contest asking those who lived, worked, attended school or owned a business in Lakewood to submit nominations for an official song, tree and flower for the city. Song nominations had to create original music and lyrics, and flowers and trees had to be sustainable in our climate, drought tolerant, and be readily available for purchase. A jury of a...

    As we celebrate 50 years of Lakewood, we can’t help but reflect on our city’s past anniversary celebrations, and the last one for Lakewood’s 40th anniversary was celebrated by picking Lakewood’s official song, tree and flower.

    The city launched a contest asking those who lived, worked, attended school or owned a business in Lakewood to submit nominations for an official song, tree and flower for the city. Song nominations had to create original music and lyrics, and flowers and trees had to be sustainable in our climate, drought tolerant, and be readily available for purchase. A jury of a City Council member, residents and city staff chose the winning nominations.

    The city’s elevation put the winning song on top while plants native to the West and already thriving in locations throughout Lakewood won as official tree and flower..

    Official song

    The city’s official song is “Lakewood, More Than a Mile High,” an original composition with lyrics. Tim Hoffman wrote and composed the song, which the judges noted is a catchy, toe-tapping tune with an easy-to-follow melody. It is a song that could be taught to elementary students, and it was professionally done. Download the sheet music at Lakewood.org/50, and make sure to use #Lakewood50 when performing it for your friends so we can share it.

    Official tree

    The city’s official tree is Celtis occidentalis, known both as the common hackberry and the Western hackberry. The jury noted that the hackberry is a hardwood, does well in drought and grows slowly, allowing it to better handle snow loads. It also is low maintenance, native to parts of the West, leafs out late in the spring helping it withstand spring snowstorms, and is a four-season tree providing a lacy, intricate visual even during the winter.

    Official flower

    The city’s official flower is Salvia pachyphylla, known as Mojave sage. The jury selected this nomination because it is native to the West, has two-color blooms, requires no watering or fertilizing once established, is long-lived and a humming bird magnet.

    The contest created a unique way to celebrate Lakewood’s 40th anniversary, and the official selections give residents items they can call Lakewood’s to this day.

  • Keep an eye out for Pop-up Parties

    9 months ago
    Capture00

    For Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary celebration, we’re bringing the party to you! Beginning in January 2019, we will be throwing Pop-up Parties in the community to surprise and dazzle residents when they least expect it.

    You never know where we will pop up. It could be at the Bear Creek Lake Park swim beach, on stage at the Lakewood Cultural Center, or maybe even in your office. Just be ready for a quick 20-minute celebration – anywhere!

    Sounds like a good time, right? We hope so! Keep an eye out for these unexpected, whimsical, and offbeat parties, and don’t forget...

    For Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary celebration, we’re bringing the party to you! Beginning in January 2019, we will be throwing Pop-up Parties in the community to surprise and dazzle residents when they least expect it.

    You never know where we will pop up. It could be at the Bear Creek Lake Park swim beach, on stage at the Lakewood Cultural Center, or maybe even in your office. Just be ready for a quick 20-minute celebration – anywhere!

    Sounds like a good time, right? We hope so! Keep an eye out for these unexpected, whimsical, and offbeat parties, and don’t forget to share photos and videos on your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #Lakewood50.

  • Why are we celebrating Lakewood's 50th Anniversary?

    9 months ago
    Academy park 4 %28 %29

    Planning for Lakewood's 50th Anniversary began during the spring of 2015, when the Lakewood Advisory Commission made recommendations to City Council about this upcoming milestone. The Lakewood Advisory Commission consists of residents with a mission to support a vibrant and inclusive community by conducting research and providing recommendations on local issues to City Council.

    The commission recommended encouraging community groups to get involved including schools and businesses; publishing a book or calendar with historic photos; creating banners; installing historical signs/markers in parks that communicate the history and origin of the site; and more. Based on these recommendations, City Council allocated...

    Planning for Lakewood's 50th Anniversary began during the spring of 2015, when the Lakewood Advisory Commission made recommendations to City Council about this upcoming milestone. The Lakewood Advisory Commission consists of residents with a mission to support a vibrant and inclusive community by conducting research and providing recommendations on local issues to City Council.

    The commission recommended encouraging community groups to get involved including schools and businesses; publishing a book or calendar with historic photos; creating banners; installing historical signs/markers in parks that communicate the history and origin of the site; and more. Based on these recommendations, City Council allocated funding for a yearlong community celebration. The following activities are what residents can look forward to in 2019:

    • Online engagement opportunities including weekly Lakewood Trivia, scavenger hunts, and more!
    • Pop-up Parties
    • 50th anniversary giveaways
    • Social media celebration using #Lakewood50
    • 50th themed performances at the Lakewood Cultural Center
    • The opening of a new permanent Lakewood history exhibit at Lakewood Heritage Center
    • New signs in selected city parks to include historical information
    • 50th related themes and giveaways at your favorite annual city events, like Cider Days, Rockin’ Block Party, Lakewood Lights and Big Boom Bash.
    • A new public art installation in Addenbrooke Park
    • The release of a book commemorating Lakewood’s 50th Anniversary available for purchase
    • History video

    Now that you know a little more about why we are celebrating Lakewood's 50th Anniversary and what activities you can look forward to, we hope you'll join the fun.

  • Join the "50 and Going Strong" fitness challenge

    3 months ago
    Fac carmody

    Celebrate Lakewood's 50th Anniversary by joining the "50 and Going Strong" fitness challenge! Register and get your punch card at any Lakewood recreation center.

    Each person who completes 50 fitness or wellness classes (general admission or registration) by the end of the year will earn an individual prize as well as the chance to enter a drawing for big prizes such as a massage or a personal training session, among other things. The first person to complete the challenge will receive three free personal training sessions. Visit Lakewood.org/recreationcenters to find a recreation center or program to get started.



    Celebrate Lakewood's 50th Anniversary by joining the "50 and Going Strong" fitness challenge! Register and get your punch card at any Lakewood recreation center.

    Each person who completes 50 fitness or wellness classes (general admission or registration) by the end of the year will earn an individual prize as well as the chance to enter a drawing for big prizes such as a massage or a personal training session, among other things. The first person to complete the challenge will receive three free personal training sessions. Visit Lakewood.org/recreationcenters to find a recreation center or program to get started.