Clothing — Used
ARC THRIFT STORE
1349 E. South Boulder Road, Louisville, 303-666-8060 Lafayette Winner: Threads Consignments Longmont Winner: Fabulous Finds Upscale Consignment Honorable Mention: Found Underground Consignment (Louisville); Sister Carmen Community Center Thrift Store (Lafayette)
It’s difficult to explain how satisfying it is to aimlessly browse a consignment shop and leave with your new favorite piece of clothing (and maybe a new sweater… and a hat… and some shoes…). When our readers get the inclination to go consignment shopping, ARC Thrift Store is their chosen destination. Not only does ARC give clothing and other goods a second chance, it provides jobs for many people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. So the next time you’re planning on picking up some newfangled apparel, consider supporting a great nonprofit and stop by ARC to give an under-loved button-up the second life it deserves.
FAMILY CARPET ONE FLOOR & HOME
1401 Ken Pratt Blvd., Suite B, Longmont, 720-378-8927 Runner Up, East County: Carpet Wise (Longmont) Honorable Mention: Aesthetic Flooring & Hard Surfaces, Inc. (Longmont)
Family Carpet One Floor & Home, as the name implies, is more than just carpet. Whether you are in the market for hardwood flooring, ceramic, vinyl tile, laminate, porcelain, bamboo flooring, granite, marble, glass tile, or, of course, carpet, Family Carpet One has you covered. Need some help installing that new flooring? No problem — the guys at Family Carpet One can do the job right, and they offer a lifetime labor warranty on top of top-notch professional installation. Family Carpet One has been serving Boulder County for more than 20 years, and it’s easy to see why our readers say they’re the best for the job.
Natural Foods Store
NATURAL GROCERS BY VITAMIN COTTAGE
1745 N. Main St., Longmont, 303-684-8200 100 W. South Boulder Road, Lafayette, 303-926-1600 Runner Up, East County: Sprouts Farmers Market (Lafayette, Longmont) Louisville Winner: Alfalfa’s Market Honorable Mention: Lucky’s Market (Longmont); Whole Foods Market (Louisville/ Superior)
It’s the natural food store with the mouthful of a name, Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage. Whatever you choose to call it — most folks go with Vitamin Cottage — it is a place that transcends its status as a healthful grocery store. Vitamin Cottage is a community. It’s a place where you get to know the clerks at the checkout line and where you can always find a knowledgeable staffer to help guide you through the sometimes-confusing world of supplements. It always feels like the friendly staff are as interested in your health as you are. So whatever you call it, it’s a great place to shop with your health in mind.
1032 E. South Boulder Road, Louisville, 303-665-6343 Lafayette Winner: Foxtrot Wheel & Edge Longmont Winner: Bike-n-Hike Honorable Mention: Jax Outdoor Gear (Lafayette)
When you have a cycling culture as rich and vibrant as Boulder County’s, not just any old bike shop will do. Louisville Cyclery ranks above the rest because it rises above the niches of cycling to embrace the many facets of biking in the Front Range. The diverse staff of expert riders don’t just peddle their wares — they ensure customers are set up for a lifetime of adventure on two wheels. They empower you to power yourself from training wheels to single track to velo time trials. The Louisville Cyclery doesn’t just gear you up, they invite you into a thriving community of locals passionate about sharing their love of the sport no matter your expertise.
LAFAYETTE FLORIST, GIFT SHOP & GARDEN CENTER
600 S. Public Road, Lafayette, 303-665- 5552 Longmont Winner: Longmont Florist, Inc. Louisville Winner: Nina’s Flowers & Gifts Honorable Mention: Gwyenn’s Greenhouse & Gardenshoppe (Longmont); Bella Fleur Floral Design (Longmont)
Talk about green thumbs. Lafayette Florist, Gift Shop & Garden Center has been operated by the same family since 1949. You’ve got to figure that with nearly 60 years experience providing beautiful flowers to guilty husbands, recovering patients, thoughtful dinner guests and folks who just understand that nothing brightens a day like a fresh bouquet, these guys have learned a trick or two to help you find that perfect mix of color and variety. Our readers say they are the best, which is exactly what you would expect after more than a half century of experience.
480 U.S. 287, Lafayette, 303-604-3060 2255 Main St., Longmont, 303-772-7950 Various locations around East County Runner Up, East County: Lucky’s Market (Longmont) Honorable Mention: Sprout’s Farmers Market (Lafayette, Longmont); Natural Grocers (Lafayette, Longmont); Alfalfa’sMarket (Louisville)
Most kings inherit their crown, but this one earned it. King Soopers has a long history of serving our community, not just with food and wares, but through hefty charitable donations each year. So shopping there feels regally good because you get to fill your cart with the King’s bounty, and you get to share the wealth, too. King Soopers offers just about every snack, fruit, veggie, cheese and meat you can dream of and it even has a home goods department with an abundance of kitchen and patio equipment. Even more impressive is the steadfast commitment to offering organics and naturals, as well as supporting Colorado farms.
WOODLEY’S FINE FURNITURE
1400 S. Main St., Longmont, 303-651-1015 320 S. Sunset St., Longmont, 303-443-5692 Lafayette Winner: Curating the Cool Louisville Winner: The Fuzzy Antler Honorable Mention: Fabulous Finds Upscale Consignment (Longmont); Concepts Furniture (Longmont)
Furniture! Just the word alone conjures up memories of walking through aisles of tables, couches, chairs, dressers and more looking for the right piece at the right price. It also conjures up the scent of lemon Pledge, which is pretty nice, all told. Our readers say Woodley’s Fine Furniture is the place to go for a pleasant furniture shopping experience. Woodley’s has a wide selection of all kinds of furniture, and they have a friendly staff that’ll help you find the perfect piece of furniture for your home. Their competitive prices will also keep you coming back for more.
2850 Arapahoe Road, Suite 110, Lafayette, 303-665-3038 Longmont Winner: Four Paws & Co. Louisville Winner: BlackPaw Honorable Mention: Bark Avenue (Lafayette); The Divine Canine (Louisville)
Pets are integral members of every family that has one. That’s why Struttin’ Pup is such a cherished part of the community; they’ve got everything Spike and Smokey could ask for — and then some. We’re talking toys, food, beds, shelters, leashes, bird feeders… really, Struttin’ Pup’s got everything you need to make your furry baby the happiest pet on your block. Swing by the shop and get your dog groomed, or pick up some cat nip and a toy mouse for your cat. Added bonus: the store is all-natural, so your furry best friend can be as healthy as you.
THE FLOWER BIN GARDEN CENTER & NURSERY
1805 Nelson Road, Longmont, 303-772- 3454 Louisville Winner: Victory Hydro Gardening Honorable Mention: The Aquaponic Source (Longmont); Acme Hydroponics (Broomfield); Colorado Tank and Barrel (Longmont)
Hydroponics are the future. We as a planet need to grow and produce plants and crops sustainably, and hydroponics are one way to acheieve that.
While hydroponic gardening may seem a bit daunting to get into, but The Flower Bin Garden Center & Nursery in Longmont is the place our readers say to go either to get started or keep going. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, The Flower Bin has everything you need and a knowledgeable, friendly staff to boot, to get you on your hydroponic way. With affordable prices, too, it’s easy to get started or to increase your grow.
Clothing — Men’s
JAX OUTDOOR GEAR
900 S. Highway 287, Lafayette, 720-266- 6160 Longmont Winner: Old Town Outfitters Honorable Mention: Modas Y Accerios 3 Hermanos (Longmont)
What is a man without his clothes?
Naked, we suppose. But the point is that the clothes make the men, as the saying goes. A fresh cut suit or a simple T-shirt can put a man at ease, give him confidence and allow him to comfortably order sofritas at Chipotle without feeling self-conscious. Our readers, ever the outdoorsy type, say Jax Outdoor Gear is the place to go for men’s clothing. With a variety of pullovers, pants, jackets, shoes and boots, watches, sunglasses and those pants that zip off just under the knees, Jax is our voters’ choice for the clothier of East County men.
Real Estate Group
LONGMONT PROPERTY GROUP
752 17th Ave., Suite 200, Longmont, 720- 938-1942 Lafayette Winner: Coal Creek Brokers
Louisville Winner: Staufer Team Real Estate Honorable Mention: Legacy Real Estate Group (Longmont); Accent Properties (Boulder)
The housing market in East Boulder County is hot, hot, hot. Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, entering the market can be like leaving your office job one day to play in the 2016 Superbowl the next — you’re gonna get tackled, and it’s gonna hurt. So, if you are an amateur when it comes to property, the best way to get what you want and keep your sanity is to team up with a real estate pro. The fine folks at Longmont Property Group are like the Peyton Manning of the East County housing market. They have years of experience, training and practice and the drive for success that only comes from an inextinguishable desire to be the best. You’re going to need a team out there — recruit the Longmont Property Group.
400 W. South Boulder Road, Suite 1500, Lafayette, 303-661-9335 Longmont Winner: Miller Music Louisville Winner: Wildwood Guitars Honorable Mention: Guitar Hut (Lafayette); Jensen Guitars (Longmont)
I t’s an exciting time in a child’s life when they get the opportunity to learn to play an instrument in the school band. But buying and renting instruments can be expensive. The staff at Lafayette Music aims to make the rental process as simple as possible, with low monthly payments and liberal exchanges (if, by chance, your young musician decides that the tuba just doesn’t float their boat). Lafayette Music also offers a wide selection of method and performance sheet music, a complete line of accessories for band and orchestral instruments, and a list of active private teachers who can take your young musician to the next level.
JAX RANCH & HOME
400 W. South Boulder Road, Suite 3000, Lafayette, 303-665-4900 Erie Winner: County Line Lumber Co. Longmont Winner: Ace Hardware Honorable Mention: Budget Home Supply (Longmont)
On Seinfeld, Jerry’s crazy neighbor Kramer had a tough time committing to big projects. One of these home improvement endeavors entailed building levels in his apartment. Sadly, Kramer’s plan fell through and the levels never happened, and maybe that was because Kramer didn’t have access to a good hardware store. If he lived near Jax Ranch & Home he most definitely would have been successful. Stocked with all the tools you need and friendly people who help you out with any questions, any project you set your sights on will be achievable. Now get to work on building those levels!
1410 Dry Creek Drive, Longmont, 303- 682-1166 Niwot Winner: Niwot Inn and Spa Honorable Mention: Residence Inn Marriott (Longmont, Louisville); Best Western Plus Plaza Hotel (Longmont); La Quinta Inn & Suites (Louisville)
The Courtyard Marriott has great rooms and a friendly staff, which we all know can be pretty important when you’re on the road. But location is also a key factor in what makes a great hotel. Courtyard Marriott is near the Longmont end of Diagonal Highway, making for easy access to Longmont or Boulder. It also is located near the soonto-open Village at the Peaks Mall with its Whole Foods and multi-screen theater. Dozens of restaurants are within sight of the hotel, downtown Longmont is less than 10 minutes away and a number of Colorado’s best-known microbreweries, such as Oskar Blues and Left Hand Brewing Company, are even closer than that. So listen to our readers and book a night or two as a getaway in their favorite East County hotel.
2201 Ken Pratt Blvd., Suite E, Longmont, 303-651-9208 225 Ken Pratt Blvd., Longmont, 303-485- 8940 Runner Up, East County: Verlo Mattress (Longmont) Honorable Mention: Sleep Number (Broomfield)
I got a king size bed. I don’t know any kings, but if one came over, I guess he would be comfortable,” joked the late, great comedian Mitch Hedburg. Well, with mattresses like the ones at Mattress Firm we can all be kings, or queens, or maybe even a twin. “When I was a boy, I laid in my twin bed and wondered where my brother was,” Hedburg continued. Regardless of your desired specifications, head on over to Mattress Firm in Longmont to find the perfect fit for you. Put on some Mitch Hedberg and fall asleep laughing.
103 N. Main St., Longmont, 303-772-9599 Lafayette Winner: Curating the Cool Louisville Winner: Fuzzy Antler Honorable Mention: Purple Poppy (Lafayette); TRI Vintage & Wares (Lafayette)
Cheese. Something you love or hate. Well, Cheese Importers, which opened its doors 34 years ago, is virtually impossible to hate. The business offers natural and organic imported and local cheeses, cured meats, spices, specialty oils, chocolate and other unique foods. Not only do they sell their products to individual buyers, Cheese Importers has more than 400 wholesale customers, including natural grocers, restaurants and hotels, so you know their quality is top notch. The European Marketplace in the store is the largest walk-in refrigerated cheese and cured meat market in Colorado, boasting more than 350 cheeses in addition to a selection of housewares, linens and soaps. All of this is why our readers say Cheese Importers is the best gift shop in East County. So whether you’re looking to give a cheese basket as a gift or pick up some new exotic perfume, this is the place for all you cheese connoisseurs.
101 S. Public Road, Suite A, Lafayette, 303- 665-5313 Longmont Winner: Snyder Jewelers Louisville Winner: Bella Frida Honorable Mention: TRI Vintage & Wares (Lafayette); Eric Olson Master Jeweler (Lafayette)
Glen and Dee Anspach relocated to Lafayette in 1955, and with support from the community, opened Anspach’s Jewelry that same year. Beginning as a watch repair and costume jewelry store, the business grew slowly but steadily. Currently, Anspach’s has three goldsmiths on site capable of handling a gamut of jewelry and watch repairs, from ring sizing to custom designs. They also offer appraisal services, lapidary works and custom modeling. But, we can’t forget their fine offering of jewelry, including pieces from New York jewelers Gabriel & Co. and, of course, Anspach’s custom designs. The Anspach family was inducted into the Boulder County Business Hall of Fame in 2005.
Auto Dealer — New
VALLEY NISSA/SUBURU OF LONGMONT
1005 Ken Pratt Blvd., Longmont, 303-586- 2862 Runner Up, East County: Stapp Interstate Toyota (Frederick/ Longmont) Honorable Mention: Frontier Honda (Longmont); Longmont Ford (Longmont); Prestige Chrysler Dodge Jeep and Ram Inc. (Longmont)
Valley Nissan/Subaru of Longmont is two top-notch dealerships in one. With its convenient central location, superb staff, full service center and great selection of new cars from two of the world’s best automakers, it’s no wonder our readers voted this place the number one dealership to buy a new car. So stop in before that old clunker falls completely apart and let the helpful folks at Valley
Nissan/Subaru put you behind the wheel of a great new car that will get you down the road for another 250,000 miles. And don’t forget to ask about their most eco-friendly rides. They’ve got plenty of them.
615 Main St., Louisville, 303-666-6320 Runner Up, East County: Front Range Eye Health Center (Louisville) Lafayette Winner: Eye Care Center of Northern Colorado (Locations in Lafayette and Longmont) Longmont Winner: Eagle Vision and Eye Clinic Honorable Mention: The Optical Centre Inc. (Longmont)
P, G, Q, F… uh, are those heiroglyphics? We’ve all been there. Struggling at the eye doctor to see those letters. Whether you made it to the bottom row or can’t tell if the big E on top is a letter or a picture of a rhesus monkey, Eyeworks in Louisville is the place to get your sight back on track. They’ve got knowledgeable and friendly staff, who can help you with many kinds of eye ailments and provide you the tools you need to get you clear-sighted.
464 Main St., Longmont, 303-772-8500 Louisville Winner: Red Dog Radios Honorable Mention: Accent Auto Sound & Accessory (Longmont); Sweet Wave Audi (Nederland); Safe & Sound Auto Accessories (Longmont)
Check one, two, three. The results are in and Miller Music in Longmont is the county favorite for electronics. Although the shop features musical instruments, they also sell a variety of electronic equipment from PA (public address) systems, to amps, mixers and recoding systems. Plus, their electronic repair is some of the best in the business as the technician sports an impressive resume of experience with some of the music industry’s top performers. And they can repair your home stereo system, whether it’s brand new or antique.
379 S. Hover St., Longmont, 303-774-9869 740 Hwy. 287 North, Lafayette, 303-248- 5680 Runner Up, East County: Big O Tires (Longmont/Louisville) Honorable Mention: Louisville Tire & Auto Care (Louisville); Firestone Complete Auto Care (Longmont, Broomfield); Peerless Tires 4 Less (Longmont)
Only three things in life are certain; taxes, death and a new set of tires at some point. Since we can’t fight them, we might as well figure out how to make all as painless as possible. According to our readers — who made no suggestions for the first two inevitabilities — the painless solution to buying that next set of tires is to head on over to Discount Tire and let their professional staff guide you to the best decision for your family’s safety and your pocketbook. Please note there were no “rubber meets the road” references made during the writing of this blurb.