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🎞️ A Denver book is headed for the big screen



Last year, award-winning Denver journalist and author Julian Rubinstein released his nonfiction novel chronicling the complicated history behind Denver’s gang wars, specifically in a block of the Northeast Park Hill neighborhood known as “The Holly.” The book, “The Holly: Five Bullets, One Gun, and the Struggle to Save an American Neighborhood,” culminates with the story of one man: Terrance Roberts.

Roberts is a former gang member turned anti-gang activist, who was at the center of controversy in 2013 when he shot someone before he was scheduled to attend a peace rally that he himself organized. Rubinstein’s book takes a closer look at Roberts, the charges he was ultimately acquitted of, and the Denver gang and civil rights history that led up to it all.

(We talked with Rubinstein and Terrance when the book debuted last year. You can listen to that episode of City Cast Denver here 👉 “The Other Side of a Famous Park Hill Gang Story.”)

Now, the book is being turned into a documentary film. News broke this week that Adam McKay is an executive producer on the project — the guy behind the Oscar-nominated Netflix original “Don’t Look Up.” (Read my thoughts on the movie here.) Turns out mutual friend David Sirota — a local journalist, former City Cast guest, and co-writer for “Don’t Look Up” — connected Rubenstein and McKay.

👉 Also of note: Roberts, the protagonist of Rubinstein’s story and still a vocal Denver activist, recently announced his plan to run for mayor next year, when Michael Hancock’s term is up.  


“We are slightly happy when kids cry when they leave.” — Rachel Fewell

Renovated for Reading AND Play: Inside DPL’s New Children’s Library
Last week, the Denver Public Library’s Central Branch opened its newly renovated children’s area to the public. Today on the show, join Bree on a tour of the space with the central branch’s administrator Rachel Fewell. 


Remember that survey I begged you to take?

  • Not to toot my own horn, but 82% of you think the CCD newsletter is “just right!” (Wow! Thanks, y’all! 🤩 )
  • Your favorite parts of the newsletter: The quick news bullets and event recommendations. (Roger that!)
  • What you want more of: Ways to get civically engaged and volunteer opportunities. (On it!)

🙏 Thanks to those of you who took the survey! Your input has been heard and is wildly appreciated. Look for some of those (good) changes — recommended BY YOU — in future newsletters!


💧 Oh, we almost forgot!
Denver’s outdoor watering restrictions went back into effect for the season on May 1. A few rules to note: Watering your lawn is not allowed from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; You cannot water your lawn more than three days per week; Try to keep all water on the grass. Find more information and tips 👉 [Denver Water]

🧑‍🏫 You can have an opinion… just have it at home: Denver Public Schools is reminding its principals that as long as they’re using their DPS email address or acting in their official capacity, their actions and responses should reflect the values of the district. In a recent letter sent to school leaders, the district implied: You can have a different opinion, but you can’t express it during work time or using district resources. [Chalkbeat]

🥕 A longtime coming: Elyria-Swansea is getting a grocery store, and it will be the community’s first since the 1960s. Shabasa Sayers, the man behind the idea, says the store will offer a “pay-what-you-can” model to shoppers at least once a week. The goal is to have the store open sometime next month.  [Denverite


⚖️ TONIGHT: Free legal clinic
The Aurora Central Public Library offers a free legal clinic on the first Tuesday of every month to assist people seeking legal help without access to an attorney. Learn more here.

📖 WEDNESDAY: Hear from Elizabeth Gilbert
Author of the acclaimed novel “Eat Pray Love,” Elizabeth Gilbert will speak at Denver’s Paramount Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Get tickets here.

🌌 WEDNESDAY: May the Fourth (Be With You)
Honor this unofficial Star Wars holiday with one of the many local celebrations not so far, far away from you.

✏️ WEDNESDAY: Learn more: From Amache to Denver
Historic Denver will host a virtual discussion with special guests about the history and preservation work being done at the former Amache Relocation Center in Granada. Sign up here.

🌮 THURSDAY: Cinco de Mayo
While Denver’s official Cinco de Mayo celebration is waiting for the weekend, there are plenty of other ways to mark the occasion — including food and drink specials! — on May 5. (I’ll have even more Cinco celebration recs for you later this week!).

📚 FRIDAY: Book awards finalists reading 
Finalists for the 2022 Colorado Book Awards in the categories of Historical Fiction and Mystery will read their works at BookBar starting at 7 p.m.

💐 SUNDAY: Mother’s Day
Don’t forget to celebrate the moms in your life this weekend. Maybe make a reservation for a special brunch, or enjoy the spring weather on a run / walk together for the Denver Mother’s Day 5K

👉 Stay tuned for more: Don’t miss Friday’s newsletter for our regularly scheduled weekend event roundup! 

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