The Challenge Begins

I’m a native of Fort Collins, Colorado, aka The Choice City. The funny thing about the name is that no one chooses his or her hometown. It’s a choice made by our parents, who act on their circumstances, their necessities, their whims. Like seeds, we are wildly sown or deliberately planted. And no matter how long or short a time we spend in the place we call “hometown,” it will always have that distinction. Life has kept me in Fort Collins through education, marriage, and motherhood, and the older I get, the more I realize how lucky I am to be here. My choice was not the choice to come here, but the choice to stay put.

As I was growing up in Fort Collins, Fort Collins was growing up around me. Based on the population statistics for 1960 and 1970 (taken from Fort Collins History Connection), approximately 35,000 people lived here when I was born. The estimated population in 2009 was closer to 137,000. We’ve seen a lot of growth and a lot of change, and I think we’ve done a pretty good job keeping the spirit of Fort Collins intact through it all.

I recently realized, however, that even though there are more things to do here than ever, I’m doing the same ones over and over. (To quote actor Jason Schwartzman, “I'm a creature of habit. I go to restaurants all the time and stuff.”) And so my challenge was born: shake up my routine by doing one new thing every week for a year. It has to be something I’ve never done, and it has to happen in Fort Collins.

Please stop by on Wednesdays to read about my latest Choice City experience. On Fridays, I’ll share the stories of other Fort Collins residents, past and present. If you’d like me to include yours—what brought you here and when, or what compelled you to leave—send me an email at ccnative(at) (First name and age are fine, and no attachments, please.)

See you around town!


I'm looking forward to hearing about your adventures, Jenny. You're an inspiration.

Here's a suggestion for a tiny bit of fun: tea at the Hilton on Prospect near campus -- I think it's the last Thursday of the month.


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