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🌭 Remember the Home Depot hot dogs?



We got an email from a City Cast reader/listener this week lamenting the disappearance of the Home Depot hot dog.

The Home Depot what??
You know, from the hot dog stands you used to see posted up outside all Home Depot stores? Each store had its own independent, local hot dog-slingin’ vendor — from the West to the East coast, those dogs were always there, and always exactly what you needed. As a kid, I looked forward to boring hardware runs with my parents because it was synonymous with a hot, juicy dog (and the occasional snow cone, if you went to the right Home Depot).

If you haven’t been to a Home Depot in a while, you may not have noticed that these beloved hot dog stands are (mostly) long gone. They were all shut down when the pandemic struck.

Why aren’t they coming back?
That’s what I’d like to know. Many of the hot dog-free Home Depots seem to have decided it’s the end of an era and the start of a new one… one where that space outside the store is used for hardware products. But some people, including former stand owners, think COVID and the need for “more space” are just flimsy excuses for corporate greed.

“I think they could fit four lawn mowers in my space,” Kerri Ginther, who used to own a stand outside an Aurora Home Depot, told Westword for their reporting on the topic last year. “Four lawn mowers of space is worth my business?”

They’re not all gone, but it’s not the same.
Last summer one stand returned to a Fort Collins Home Depot and another in Arvada. The Home Depot hot dog advocate who emailed City Cast Denver said there’s still a hot dog guy standing his ground at the Home Depot in Thornton off Grant Street. But it’s far from the amount of hot dog-slingers there used to be. Colorado’s lucky — In some places, like Michigan, Home Depot decided that the hot dog stands won’t be returning at all.

Most stands had been stationed at their community’s Home Depot for more than a decade, sometimes longer, and their absence is still being felt. One quick Twitter search for the phrase “Home Depot hot dog” and you can doomscroll through tweets from hundreds of hot dog-lovers from around the country decrying the disappearance of their own local carts and what that means for the small business owners who run them.

But like with so many COVID-19 casualties, we didn’t know what we had ’til it was gone.

Have thoughts on the disappearance of the Home Depot hot dog? I wanna know. Reply to this email 📧


“A lot of people expressed that ‘mountain’ seemed like something that was unique to the Denver accent — like the pronunciation of mountain with a what we call a glottal stop, where you make the T with your throat. … But funnily enough, this is a general phenomenon of American English.” — Jeremy Calder, assistant professor of Linguistics at CU Boulder

Does the ‘Denver Accent’ Exist? CU Researchers are on the Case.
As Denver continues to grow and change, there’s a constant conversation happening about our identity. Who are we as a city? What makes Denver, well, Denver? One characteristic often in question is the way we talk. Do we have an accent? Is there a way — or more than one way — Denverites talk? Turns out, there isn’t a lot of information out there on our particular speech patterns, but researchers at CU Boulder are on the case.

Today on the show, Host Bree Davies talks with Jeremy Calder, an assistant professor in the linguistics department, and graduate student Andrew Ting about their “Voices of Colorado” project and what they’ve found to be possible characteristics of an actual Denver accent. 


Growing Home — a local nonprofit committed to supporting families facing barriers to stability and success — invites you to participate in its What’s Cookin’ fundraising competition. Home chefs of any age can sign up to show off their best recipe, then collect votes from family and friends. Each vote comes with a donation to Growing Home!

You can compete in either the Savory or Sweet division in one of the following categories: Junior, Amateur, Professional, Local Celeb. All you have to do is share your recipe and photo on the fundraiser website. The competition is happening now and runs through May 8. Learn how to enter or vote for a local chef here. May the best meal win! 


🦠 COVID who? Yes, state health officials say that the new COVID variant (“stealth omicron” or omicron BA.2.) is indeed among us and causing a small bump in infections. BUT transmission rates are so low and so many of us have immunity against the virus, it’s likely nothing to worry too much about. (Don’t quote me on that.) Learn more about this variant 👉 [CO Sun]

👸🏾 Something you didn’t know: Or at least, I didn’t know — Prior to her superstardom, Lizzo lived in Aurora for a year and worked at a local King Soopers. Drop that tidbit at your next happy hour. The one-time Colorado resident-turned-pop-queen will be back in Denver later this year for a Halloween concert at Ball Arena. [9News]

😢 Sad, sad news for Standley Lake eagle watchers: Early April brought cause for celebration as our favorite family of local eagles at Standley Lake welcomed a new eaglet to the nest. But last weekend, researchers noticed evidence that leads them to believe any babies in the nest have died. Some have speculated that the ongoing outbreak of bird flu may be the cause, but without any carcasses for further testing, there’s no way to be sure. [CBS4]

🍎 A big step in early childhood education: Starting next year, every Colorado child will have the opportunity to attend preschool for FREE thanks to the much-anticipated “universal preschool” bill signed into law by Gov. Jared Polis this week. The statewide program will offer 10 hours of tuition-free preschool per week for Colorado 4-year-olds. [Chalkbeat]

💰 These city employees are getting PAID: Eleven mayor-appointed city employees are getting impressive pay bumps. Most of the positions have not seen a raise in six years, and at least six are getting a more than 15% increase. Denver city council approved the raises on Monday night in a 12-1 vote. Cadi CdeBaca was the only “no” vote, arguing that it was inappropriate to request raises for mayor-appointed employees at the end of the mayor’s current term. The funding for the increases will come from existing departmental budgets. [Denver Post; Denverite]

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