Biennial Brings Western Hemisphere to Denver
The 2010 Biennial of the Americas kicked off Thursday, July 1, for a month-long celebration of the culture, ideas and people of the Western Hemisphere. Hosted by the City of Denver, the first-of-its-kind festival welcomes national and international visitors for a cross-cultural experience filled with art exhibitions, concerts, food, film and dance, all celebrating the 35 countries of the Americas.
“This is an exciting time for our hemisphere with Mexico, Colombia, Chile and Argentina all celebrating their bicentennials in 2010, and the Organization of American States celebrating its centennial,” states Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper. “This is the perfect time to bring together visitors and residents, artists, musicians, thinkers, businessmen, scholars, filmmakers, and leaders to celebrate the rich culture and amazing creativity of the Americas.”
The international event, July 1-31, throughout Denver cultural facilities and headquartered at the Civic Center Park McNichols Building, also includes a speakers series. Titled “The Americas Roundtable,” the discussions offer a public dialogue on topics ranging from energy to climate change with guests that include former heads of state from Mexico, Brazil and Argentina.
Concerts will fill the Mile High City with the music of the Americas, offering everything from hot Latin bands like Panama’s Horacio Valdes to a steel drum workshop with Ray Holman, renowned steel drum composer and performer from Trinidad and Tobago.
At the center of the celebration’s visual arts is The Nature of Things, a 24-artist exhibition at the restored McNichols Building in Civic Center Park. Denver cultural partners including the Denver Art Museum, Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver Museum of Nature & Science, Butterfly Pavilion, and Museum of Contemporary Art Denver will host special tours, exhibitions, and other events throughout the month.
Twenty-six restaurants will offer a series of themed happy hours, fine-dining feasts, and wine pairings exploring new tastes, recipes, and cultures through food that originated in the Americas.
“Every day in July, visitors will be able to choose from a diverse program schedule ranging from concerts by the Colorado Symphony Orchestra to public art installations by renowned artists such as Janet Echelman to discussions with world leaders including the former president of Peru,” said Donna Good, president of finance and operations, Biennial of the Americas.
The Biennial is also expected to boost tourism. “This event attracts every type of visitor – from families with young children to young professionals to baby boomers. The Biennial will certainly be a great addition for visitors to Denver’s blockbuster summer with events including King Tut, Body Worlds and Moore in the Gardens,” said Richard Scharf, president & CEO of VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Civic Center Park will be the centerpiece of the Biennial experience. Visitors can have a global experience, starting in Egypt at the Denver Art Museum’s “King Tut” exhibit, then walk across the street for lunch in Denver’s gorgeous Greek Theatre, and lastly, tour the remodeled 25,000-square-foot McNichols Building to enjoy art, dance and film inspired by the Americas at The Nature of Things exhibit.
Art in all forms with be on display throughout Denver, from break dancing on the 16th Street Mall, to concerts featuring the chamber music of Mexico, Argentina and Brazil.
Seven roundtable discussions on education, poverty reduction, energy and climate change, women in leadership, health, philanthropy, and trade will take place at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. Each roundtable will feature 10-12 participants who are considered thought-leaders in their industries. These are public events are designed for large audiences of 1,000 or more, but the dialogue will be candid, spirited, and like an unscripted conversation.
Two special events of international importance will include a Summit of Former Heads of State as a roundtable on July 12.
For a complete list of events, schedules and prices, visit: www.biennialoftheamericas.org.
City Spirit Picnic Artwork Contest Winners
Congratulations to this year’s City Spirit Artwork Contest winners! Winners were selected from each age group by the City Spirit Picnic Committee who received more than 30 submissions this year, which are being displayed at www.denvergov.org/cityspirit. The contest winners will have their artwork featured in all of the advertising (flyers, posters, etc.) for the 2010 City Spirit Picnic held on Wednesday, August 18 at Civic Center Park from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
And the winners are…..
Ages 5 and Under
Gianna Billings, Age 5
Parent: Mike Billings, DSD
Jacob Archuleta, Age 9
Parent: Michelle Pena, CSA
Maya Nettath, Age 11
Parent: Sunil Nettath, Treasury
For more information or to RSVP for the City Spirit Picnic, visit www.denvergov.org/cityspirit.
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Life Insurance Beneficiary Designation on DOT
City employees will soon be able to view their life insurance beneficiary designations on DOT. The Career Service Authority Benefits Team has changed the way life insurance beneficiary information is stored, which will allow employees to view it on the City's intranet site, much like other benefit designations.
In order to ensure that all the information on record is up to date, CSA will be mailing Beneficiary Designation forms to all eligible employees. Once the form is received, please review it carefully and return it to the CSA Benefits Team by July 31, 2010.
The information on the new form will supersede all other records on file. To minimize the amount of inquiries about current file designations, the CSA Benefits Team will not enter any of the old information into PeopleSoft, and will only process/enter forms received on or after June 1, 2010.
For more information on the City and County of Denver's Life Insurance programs, or to obtain a copy of the Life Insurance Certificate, click here.
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Denver Office of Cultural Affairs Presents 7th Annual Latino Rhythms July 15
The Denver Office of Cultural Affairs (DOCA) will present the 7th annual Latino Rhythms: Biennial Edition concert on Thursday, July 15. The concert will take place from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at La Alma/Lincoln Park, 12th Ave. and Mariposa St. Latino Rhythms is a cultural celebration highlighting Latino music and heritage. This event is free and open to the public.
The Latino Rhythms: Biennial Edition concert line-up includes:
- Novillos Musical
- Manuel Molina
- Top Recording Artist Horacio Valdés from Panama
Latino Rhythms is fun for the whole family. The event will also feature theatre presentations by students from Labyrinth Arts Academy, performing excerpts from their summer show Zoot Suit, as well as a food and community marketplace.
Free parking will be available on the Auraria campus in lots H and L. Latino Rhythms is accessible by RTD light rail, exit 10th Ave. and Osage St. Public transportation is encouraged.
For complete Latino Rhythms information, visit www.denvergov.org/latinorhythms or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LatinoRhythms.
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Cancer Buddies 9th Annual Teddy Bear Drive
Giving together makes amazing things happen! When thousands of City employees give Teddy Bears and stuffed animals to Employee Assistance’s Cancer Buddies Annual Teddy Bear Drive, both children and adults find comfort. The Teddy Bear Drive is June 1 through July 31.
Each year the Annual Teddy Bear Drive accepts thousands of NEW teddy bears and donates them to Denver Health Medical’s Pediatrics Department. Receiving teddy bears makes the children very happy. This is a wonderful tradition where employees donate teddy bears and stuffed animals in memory of a loved one, a close friend or a co-worker, who they have lost to cancer. Many people find that giving to this worthy cause is helps them deal with their grief.
Employee Assistance is hoping to make this the largest drive yet! Won’t you please donate? If you are interested in becoming an agency coordinator, please contact Eileen Stamm, 720-913-3201. You will receive a small gift as token of our appreciation.
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DenverWellness and Wellness Center
Time Is Running Out To Save Money!
Do you want to save $144 dollars on your medical insurance next year? We are pleased to announce that City employees will be able to save $12 a month by participating in the DenverWellness Premium Discount Program! The DenverWellness Premium Discount Program offers City employees the opportunity to save money on their medical insurance by completing an online health assessment through their City-sponsored health care provider and one approved DenverWellness program option.
The DenverWellness Premium Discount Program has had an excellent participation rate so far. As of now, a total of 1200 employees have completed at least one requirement of the program and 350 employees have completed both requirements of the program, making them eligible for the premium discount. Don’t wait to participate! There is still time to complete your online health assessment through your City-sponsored health care provider, as well as the 8-week Self-Paced Physical Activity Challenge.
Participants of the Self-Paced Physical Activity Challenge must complete a minimum of:
- 8 consecutive weeks of aerobic activity
- Each session must be at least 30 minutes of non-stop aerobic activity
- 3 days per week
- Log weekly activity on a designated challenge log sheet for the entire 8 weeks
The last week to start the Self-Paced Physical Activity Challenge is the week of July 4th. Both requirements must be completed by August 31, 2010 to be eligible for the premium discount.
Now is the time to get healthy and start putting money back in your pocket! For more information about the Premium Discount Program, contact your Wellness Champion or visit www.denvergov.org/denverwellness.
Premium Discount Program Approved
Employees are now eligible for a discount on their medical insurance in 2011 by completing the requirements of the City’s DenverWellness Premium Discount Program. To qualify for the premium discount, employees are required to complete an online health assessment through their City-sponsored health care provider and one approved wellness program option. For more information, visit www.denvergov.org/denverwellness.
- Online Health Assessment
As part of DenverWellness’ Premium Discount Program, employees have the opportunity to complete a free online health assessment through our City-sponsored health care providers. It's free to you, and only takes about 20 minutes to complete. The questions are designed to provide you with a detailed, personalized health report showing the relationship between behavior and healthy habits, today and your healthy future. All information is confidential between you and your provider. The online health assessment is one of the required actions of DenverWellness’ Premium Discount Program and must be completed by August 31, 2010 to be eligible. To learn more visit www.denvergov.org/denverwellness or contact your Wellness Champion.
- Join Weight Watchers!
Shed a few pounds and get ready to enjoy summer! Join Weight Watchers! Learn new strategies for handling your hunger and eating smarter. A new session began on May 25. It’s never too late to join! The cost of the remaining sessions is pro-rated. Weigh-ins start at 11:30 a.m., meeting starts at noon in room 4.F.2. of the Webb Municipal Building. To register or for more information, call Tanya Turcios at 720-913-5687.
- Self-Paced Physical Activity Challenge
The Self-Paced Physical Activity Challenge is a part of the DenverWellness Premium Discount Program. It is an 8-week challenge that encourages employees to pursue a healthier lifestyle by being more physically active. Employees log their weekly physical activity and aim to complete at least 3 - 30 minute sessions of moderately intense aerobic activity each week. To be eligible for premium discounts, employees must complete the challenge and turn in their log sheet by August 31, 2010. For a complete list of acceptable aerobic activities and a challenge log sheet, visit www.denvergov.org/denverwellness or contact your Wellness Champion.
|Denver Wellness: Chair Massage Program|
Relax and unwind with a 15-minute Chair Massage, appointments are available Thursdays from 11:40-4:20pm. Cost is $12 and appointments are pre-paid by cash, check or credit card. Tickets can be purchased from the Cashier on the 2nd floor of WMB between 7:30am-4:30pm. Multiple tickets can be purchased at one time. With a ticket, a massage can be scheduled by calling 720-913-5696. If you have any questions, please call 720-913-5687.
Webb Municipal Building | 201 W. Colfax Ave. Denver, CO 80202
Hours: Monday – Friday | 4:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday | 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
WMB Wellness Center Membership
Membership to the center includes a daily schedule of exercise classes such as Yoga, Mat Pilates, Spinning, Step, Sculpting, Core Conditioning, Circuit Training and other classes. Equipment includes the latest models of treadmills, spinning bikes, elliptical trainers, bicycles, stair steppers rowing machines, and Cybex weight machines. Members are able to participate in personal training sessions, private Yoga and Mat Pilates sessions, computerized fitness assessments and receive individualized exercise programs for an additional fee. Cost is $25/month.
Wellness Center Day Usage Program
All City employees are able to use the Webb Building Wellness Center on a drop-in basis without the requirement of a membership. If you have a class or meeting downtown, drop in to the center on your break to keep your workouts on track. You can take advantage of the Wellness Center’s variety of cardiovascular and weight equipment, exciting fitness classes and healthy energy for only $5 a day.
Orientation/Tour of Wellness Center
Tours of the Center are available Monday through Friday. Learn more about the Center including equipment, classes and amenities. Interested employees can obtain information about membership or sign up at the end of the tour. Call Tanya Turcios at 720-913-5687 to schedule your appointment.
Scheduled Orientation Dates:
- Thursday, July 15 at Noon
- Wednesday, July 21 at Noon
- Thursday, July 29 at Noon
For more information or to participate in any Wellness Center events contact Tanya Turcios at 720-913-5687 or email@example.com.
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Youth Commission Vision: Empowered Young Voices Working With City Officials To Build A Better Denver
The Mayor’s Youth Commission is under the Mayor’s Office for Education and Children (MOEC). The Youth Commission is established under City Ordinance as an advisory body of 11 students ages 14-18, and 10 adults, five from City agencies serving youth, and five from the youth non-profit community, all appointed by the Mayor and approved by City Council.
2009-2010 Co-Chairs: Tyler Quintana, Denver Center for International Studies and Brady Grant, Goodwill Industries.
Youth Commissioners: Clayton Brown, Denver School of Science and Technology, Abenicio Casias, Denver Center for International Studies, Jose Juan Cruz, Bruce Randolph, Brittany Fernandes, George Washington, William Harris, Denver East, Charlotte Mangels, John F.Kennedy, Jazmine Schipper, John F. Kennedy, Joshua Wilson, Denver School of Science and Technology and Heather Yin, George Washington.
Adult Commissioners: Pat Hedrick, Denver’s Safe City Office, Audrey Hoener, School Based Health Centers, Corey Jones of Brignac Education Consulting, Kathy Luna, Boys and Girls Clubs, Dolores Moreno, Denver Parks and Recreation, Gina Rubano, Denver Office of Cultural Affairs, Leslie Branch Wise, Denver Police Department and Molly Hayes, Denver Department of Human Services.
The Mayor’s Youth Commission goals were; 1-working with City officials; 2-youth voice and 3-youth leadership and development. The Youth Commission once again partnered with the Denver League of Women Voters and Denver TV 8 to host a DPS candidates’ forum in October of this year before November elections, a wonderful example of youth voice and youth leadership.
In the spring of this year, they facilitated a workshop on healthy choices using a jenga game entitled: The Game of Life: How do You Play it?” at the annual Safe City Youth Summit for about 60 participants where young people learned about decision making with consequences. Commissioner Jose Juan Cruz, a junior at Bruce Randolph, presented testimony to the Denver Public School Board in support of the sex education resolution they were considering.
The Youth Commission met with the Mayor in December of 2009 to report their accomplishments and hear from the Mayor. Please go to our website for a full list of 2009-2010 accomplishments www.denvergov.org/education and follow links for Commission on Youth.
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Mayor Hickenlooper Appoints Derek Brown as Manager of General Services
Mayor John Hickenlooper has appointed Derek Brown as the Manager of General Services for the City and County of Denver. Brown has served as the Interim General Manager since August 2008 and worked for General Services since 2005.
“We are fortunate to have someone with the level of expertise and knowledge about Denver that Derek brings to this position,” said Mayor John Hickenlooper. “Derek has worked more than 20 years in the City and been instrumental in many big projects. We are thrilled to have him lead our General Services Department.”
Brown helped develop the concept and coordinate approval for the construction of the $200 million Wellington E. Webb Municipal Office Building in 2000. The 680,000-square-foot building consolidated 40 City agencies from 14 different locations, enabling Denver to maximize efficiencies and minimize lease costs. More recently, he helped coordinate the Master Plan for the new Justice Center.
Brown began his public service career as an intern in the City’s Office of Asset Management in 1986. He was appointed 10 years later as the Agency’s Executive Officer. In 2003, Brown joined the City’s Facility Planning and Management Office as a Senior Real Estate Agent. He was named Deputy Manager of General Services in 2005, and in August 2008 he joined the City’s General Services Department as Interim Manager. Brown is responsible for managing the Division of Facilities Management and its 120 buildings, as well as all purchasing, utilities and energy and central services.
Brown earned a master’s degree in urban and regional planning and a bachelor’s degree in environmental design, both from the University of Colorado. He received the City’s Pioneer Award for Best Practices/Innovation in 2002.
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