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New Pixar movie set in the Italian Riviera coming in 2021

Walt Disney Studios has unveiled details about its next original Pixar film called “Luca.”

Not too much has been revealed yet, but Disney said Thursday that the animated movie will “introduce a boy named Luca as he experiences an unforgettable summer in a seaside town on the Italian Riviera.”

Luca, to be released on June 18, 2021, will be directed by Enrico Casarosa. “This is a deeply personal story for me, not only because it’s set on the Italian Riviera where I grew up, but because at the core of this film is a celebration of friendship. Childhood friendships often set the course of who we want to become and it is those bonds that are at the heart of our story in Luca,” Casarosa said in a statement.

 “So in addition to the beauty and charm of the Italian seaside, our film will feature an unforgettable summer adventure that will fundamentally change Luca.”


Calgon, take us away!

Longmont Dental Loft’s Office Therapy Dog is a Hit!

Does going to the dentist make you anxious?  Longmont Dental Loft’s CCP (Chief Calming Pawfficer) Bentley to the rescue!

This Australian Labradoodle plays an important role as the office therapy dog at Dr. Adrienne Hedrick’s dental office in Longmont: Bentley interacts with patients who enjoy being around dogs by snuggling up to them and providing a comfortable presence to make them feel at ease. 

Bentley’s calming presence is par for the course at this down-to-earth Longmont dentist office that prioritizes having a warm and comforting atmosphere that also exudes an electric vibe with positive energy. And you’ll see people smiling. At the dentist! 

Longmont Dental Loft also prides itself on having state-of-the-art technology including a CEREC for same-day crowns, a Cone Beam CT machine that takes 3D images unlike a traditional X-Ray machine, and everything is digital so patients don’t have to take those weird “gummy” impressions.  Instead, they get scanned by a computer. 

Having tooth pain? Dr. Hedrick provides every patient with her personal cell phone number because she truly loves interacting with them. This Mile High Mama of two boys loves outdoor activities such as yoga and cycling. Staying active is an important part of her family’s life and Bentley loves to tag along for outdoor and office adventures. “Just yesterday we had a new patient who put out a message on Next Door asking for dentist recommendations and someone said, ‘Dr. Hedrick is great and has an adorable dog.’”

Bentley has returned to the office with several COVID precautionary measures in place.  This hypoallergenic cutie hangs out in the back office so he’s not around patients until he is requested (which happens a lot). He puts people so at ease that the Longmont dental office even gets a lot of teens asking for Bentley to sit on their laps during procedures. 

Dr. Hedrick says “In the past year we’ve had three patients adopt Australian Labradoodles as a result of meeting Bentley.”

 Healthy teeth and a cute dog? Longmont Dental Loft has got dentist visits all figured out!

In partnership with Mile High Mamas. 



When Divorce, Chairs and Teeth Collide

The hardest day of my life: I hadn’t been separated from Antonia and Jonah’s father for even a month when a horrible accident happened. Jonah, my three-year-old, had spilled his glass of milk all over my dining room floor about a half-hour before it was time to take them to the police station, which at that time was the parent-exchange location every Sunday.

In retrospect, I should have left the stupid milk sprawled to lay where it may until coming back home from dropping them off. I should have been savoring that last half hour I had with them. But the milk on the floor bothered me. And I’m not even a neat freak, by any stretch of the imagination. Nonetheless, for whatever reason, I felt it needed to be cleaned up immediately. I would live to regret that small decision for a very, very long time.

As I moved all the dining room chairs into the living room, lining them up like a train so that I could mop, Antonia rose from the couch and tripped over her packed-and-ready-to-go duffel bag, landing directly on the edge of one of the chairs, the caboose of my train. In an instant, she was screaming and covered in blood. She’d knocked out her four front teeth in one fell swoop. Luckily, they were baby teeth, but that didn’t mean any less blood and pain and panic. I put a washcloth to her mouth to stop the bleeding and rushed her to the emergency room, calling her father from the road to meet me there.

Despite the snail-for-cars that exponentially delayed my trip to the ER, everything turned out okay. There was no permanent damage, just a mouth full of missing teeth. But she was still shaken up and hurting. As it was, this was already a painful time for her. Antonia was taking the separation of her parents especially hard.

Emergency room visit all taken care of, it was time for her and her brother to go with their father. We were all still very new to the idea of packing bags, loading up and saying goodbye to one another every weekend. But the goodbyes were by far the worst even under the best of circumstances. She looked up at me with her swollen upper lip and blood-crusted toothless face and asked me to come with her. She said that she didn’t want anything else in the whole world but for us to be together as a family that night. Just that one night. How deeply I wanted to say yes. It would have been so, so easy. Most definitely not because I wanted to spend another night with her father, but because she had just been through a horrific experience at an already stressful time in her young life. My soon-to-be six-year-old girl needed her mother! How could I cause her more pain by saying no? The demand for an answer to her question lay completely with me because her father’s vote was for more together time.

But I couldn’t. The implications would be terrible. So, with a heavy heart and a knot the size of a cantaloupe in my throat, I said no. I said it was their father’s time now. And she really was okay. This is how it had to be, I added. She looked at me as if I’d just slapped her open-handedly across the face. I closed my eyes to stop the tears, kissed my children goodbye and left as fast as I could. “How could I have said no?” I wondered, driving aimlessly around before heading back to my empty home with the train of chairs still in my living room, her blood still in my carpet.

But how could I have said yes? At that point, I had no intention of working things out with their father, under any circumstances. What would saying yes have meant? It would have meant that reuniting was something negotiable. It would have meant that all she had to do in the future is get hurt again, act ill, look sad, cry or, hell, just ask, and I might be talked into staying together. It would have been a lesson in how to manipulate.

That night, I drank lots of wine and cried myself to sleep. I finally understood the labors of parenting like I never had before. And, even though I myself didn’t become one, I understood how easy it would be to fall into alcohol or drug addiction when emotional pain was so excruciating.

It’s been several years since then, and I’m happy to report that we’ve all adjusted to this new arrangement. Whether she fully understands my reasoning or not, I think Antonia has finally forgiven me for what she perceived as abandoning her that day. The blood and gore and pain of separation is now a fading memory.

I’ll remember enough for the both of us.

-Catherine Dix 

The Importance of Extracurriculars in the COVID-19 Era

As the world reacts to the global pandemic of the coronavirus, we are forced to adapt. We find ourselves in a unique position that has its positives and negatives. The world has been tipped into uncertainty, but on the other, we are standing as a united front, sharing hardship and lifting each other up in times of need.

As a student, your traditional approach to extracurriculars has shifted as you reconsider in-person projects and alternative ways to make a difference while boosting your extracurricular profile. Think outside the box and show what an innovator and leader are. Demonstrate your adaptability to challenging and unpredictable circumstances.

To help students on their journey of exploring their passions and creating a lasting impact in an online environment, we have created a guide, “How to Create Your Own Online Initiative.” This guide will take you step-by-step through how to brainstorm, launch, and scale your own extracurricular initiative. You can download the guide HERE!

Our Crimson extracurricular mentors have been blown away by the clever, innovative, and genuinely considerate ideas our students have developed. These students have taken the circumstances presented by this unique time and turned them into possibilities and opportunities to ideate, develop, and give back.

Below are a few creative, impactful ideas and projects our students have brainstormed and built under the guidance of their dedicated Crimson ECL mentors.

Humans of the Coronavirus

One student has interviewed citizens from the 25 most-affected nations around the world, from Iraq. to China to the USA, gathering their stories. Just some of these questions include: How are you feeling? How is the media coverage in your region affecting you and your family? How are you managing self-isolation? How are you managing these periods of change? The idea behind this project is to offer an online platform to connect in a time of social distancing and to foster connection between those enduring the same experiences.

Ventilator Fundraising Art Initiative

One Crimson student partnered with a local artist in New Zealand, and commissioned 85 pieces of art relating to the coronavirus. Looking at this through an artist’s eyes, it encourages people to think of the other side of humanity, to see the situation from an alternative perspective. The student then created a website to host an online auction to sell the collection, the proceeds of which will go toward buying ventilators for the local hospital.

Curating a Guide to Online Learning During COVID

As schools close and transition to online classes, the dynamic of learning changes drastically.

Using this situation as an opportunity to adapt and assist, a Crimson student who had an extensive online learning experience with Crimson, identified this situation as a way to make a positive change. This student published an extensive blog on online learning, allowing students and parents to share their tips and experiences. The aim of the blog is to educate students on how they can improve learning outcomes online and to help parents support their children through access to additional online resources and references.

Learn more about ECLs

What will your Impact be?

Uncertain times like these ultimately inspire and reveal the creators and entrepreneurs who dare to make a positive change.

If you would like to speak to someone about your extracurriculars or personal projects/initiatives during this time, contact us here to arrange for a Crimson advisor to get in touch.

Our Crimson Admission Support service offers Extracurricular and leadership project planning, execution, and reporting as part of the core service. Our holistic approach provides support across all areas of the US and UK university application process. We assist you to find your best-fit university, create a personalized roadmap, ace your standardized tests, craft the perfect essay, build candidacy through extracurriculars, and more.

In partnership with Mile High Mamas.







Deals: Shiki Dreams, Cherry Cricket and more!

It shouldn’t have surprised me when I went to Hobby Lobby this last weekend and saw their Christmas section almost fully set. The Target CEO recently announced that this is not the year for crowds (duh!) – so they will plan to be closed on Thanksgiving. Walmart said something similar. According to Target some of their deals could start as early as October! Also hearing that Amazon Prime Day will be later in the summer. So maybe the deals days will collide in October?

Shiki Dreams by Prismajic is an immersive arts company. Part art museum, part Cirque du Soleil, and part virtual reality experience.  Following on the heels of the 2019 smash hit Natura Obscura, this multi-sensory immersive art experience that combines traditional art forms with cutting edge technology in a journey of exploration and discovery. Step into the world of Shiki, the spiritual yeti guide and explore his dreams. Only six people are allowed at a time for social distancing. 2219 E. 21st Avenue, Denver.

Cherry Cricket.  I can’t believe that as a Colorado native (most of which was in the Denver area) I have never eaten at the Cherry Cricket! It is almost blasphemy. That all changed last week when I went and tried the most delicious burger I got a little burger and it was plenty for me because I also NEEDED to try some of those boozy shakes we tried the Grasshoppah’ and the Cherry Room Boom. Which were both DELISH! I was glad I brought along a friend who was willing to share!  It is now Milkshake Mondays! Kids get free milkshakes all day on Mondays and the big kids (21+) can get boozy shakes for just $5!! One location in Cherry Creek and the other by the ballpark!

 Denver Summer Activity Guide. Amber published our annual 2020 Denver Summer Activity Guide with 150+ activities! Most of the free days aren’t happening (thanks COVID) but there are some super fun things on this list – so be sure to bookmark this awesome resource.

Mile High Flea Market. The Flea Market is still happening. Now every last Friday of the month, admission is Free!

Free Virtual Summer Camp. Camp Tonsafun” is a free virtual camp hosted by counselors from the NBCUniversal family and others with activities for families to enjoy at home. People can simply say “summer camp” into their Xfinity voice remotes to access the home summer camp content, like how to be a Smart Ninja with Jessie Graff from American Ninja Warrior. Learn more here.   

 Family Backpacking Trips. Camp Chief Ouray (CCO) has reserved permits for backpacking trips in multiple scenic locations offering families a personalized adventure, custom-tailored to ability levels. Trips caters to various skill level with 2-day excursions on the Snow Mountain Ranch property, 4-day backpacking trips in Rocky Mountain National Park, or 7-day trips in the Wind River Range of Wyoming. Each adventure is guided by one or two experienced staff members who will lead the group, facilitate fun games, cook food for the group, and ensure overall health and safety. Each trip is intended for one household. If you would like to go on a trip with another household that you know, contact us. The cost will decrease by $250 per family if there are 2 or more families on a trip. All food and equipment will be provided.   

 Sam’s Club Membership. I often go back and forth, is Costco better or Sam’s Club? Maybe Sam’s Club is for a deal hunter – right now they are offering a promotion when you purchase a membership for $45 you get a Sam’s Club Gift cards valued at $45 ($25 instantly, $20 when you spend $20 + a free pizza). So basically, you get the membership for FREE and they’re throwing the pizza party to celebrate!

 Wendy’s Rewards.  Who doesn’t love free food? Sign up online at or download the app. When you purchase food – make sure to have your app scanned – because the more you buy – the more food you can earn for free!  

 Staples Sale on School Supplies. Even if the kids are going to school at home again (or not), they will need school supplies. Staples has several items for as low as 25 cents – shipped!

Dairy Block & The Maven. The newest micro-district is cheering on the return to baseball! Park right at the Dairy Block for just $12, enjoy the extended patios and outdoor games, All games will be broadcast on the speakers throughout the Dairy Block Alley. Plus stay at the Maven with an awesome rate starting at $199 per night! Get free overnight parking; two purple Montana Morada cocktails; and two keepsake Rockies glasses! 


6 Things You’ll Love About Colorado’s Wild Animal Sanctuary

Walk down the world’s longest footbridge while scouting large cats and bears lounging in the shade or splashing around a pool.

With over 9,000 acres of sanctuary lands an hour outside of Denver, The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg is an attraction travelers can’t miss. It’s not only a place to spot big cats but is also thoroughly invested in the captive-wild-animal crisis and helps animals around the world, operating with a mission of saving animals from less-than-ideal situations and rehabilitating them. A typical visit might last 4 to 6 hours, spent walking the 1.5-mile walkway, stopping for lunch at the visitor’s center and learning about the wonderful creatures that call the sanctuary home. shares this look at why you and your family should add The Wild Animal Sanctuary to your northeast Colorado itinerary.


Nearly 500 animals roam large-acreage, natural habitats and make Colorado’s Wild Animal Sanctuary a must-see for animal lovers. The sanctuary is the oldest in the country, with over 38 years of experience. And while the center is open year-round, there are certain times of the day that are better to see the animals in action. In the summer it’s best to arrive in the late afternoon, as the animals nap during the hottest parts of the day. Come winter, you’re more likely to see animals up and about throughout the day. 


Catch a tiger splashing in a pool, watch a lion play on a “jungle gym” or a bear playing with a “boomer ball.” The center is host to animals from all different backgrounds including coyotes, jaguars, mountain lions, porcupines, alpacas and more. Over the course of the sanctuary’s history, they’ve rescued over 1,000 animals — all from illegal situations or neglect — with more than 460 living at the facility today. There’s even a roundhouse to receive new tigers, designed to allow them to recuperate and adjust.  


The center is home to an elevated walkway above the animal habitats that provides a fantastic view for visitors, while ensuring the animals are comfortable. At 1.51 miles in length, it even holds the Guinness World Record for the world’s longest footbridge. Be sure to visit in the summer for Wild Nights — as the sun starts to set, the animals are particularly active. Wolves begin howling, lions roar and there are beautiful sunset views. You can even bring a picnic dinner! 


48,000-square-foot complex housed inside a giant biodome greets you as your first stop at the sanctuary. Since the recommended time to spend at the sanctuary is 4 to 6 hours, you may need to pick up a few provisions. The center is designed as a small-town main street, complete with trees, grass and a brook running down the middle. Stop for a bite at Lion’s Den Café, which serves oven-fired pizza, burgers and pasta. There are vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options available as well. After lunch, grab some ice cream at The Ice Cream Shop; we recommend going for the English Toffee or Caramel Oreo. After walking the refuge, stop in the gift shop for the perfect souvenirs to commemorate your time with the animals. 


The sanctuary also offers summer safari dinners, which are held at the sanctuary four times a year. These fundraising events include a meal and stimulating conversations with the staff, caretakers and volunteers. Plus, the education center features numerous videos about the animals at the center and there are many programs offered to continue your education. You can even adopt an animal by paying a fee that goes to giving them the best care, food and attention. 


Expanding into southern Colorado is the sanctuary’s next plan and with the purchase of 9,004 more acres in Las Animas and Baca counties, that dream is becoming a reality. Though it won’t be open to the public, these remote lands feature amazing natural landscapes with rocks, hills, canyons and water that will serve the animals as a true sanctuary. To help with this much-needed extension of the center’s rescue efforts, you can help by purchasing acreage and donating it back. 


Colorado high school students built an actual house for their math class

 Two years ago, Green Mountain High School implemented a program that has since spread to more than 500 high schools nationwide. 

It involves students using math to build homes for Habitat for Humanity. 

Now, GMHS’s first home-building project is being given to a family in need. 

“Surreal excitement…we’ve known about this house, we’ve been working for it about eight months, and we always felt like something else was around the corner,” said new homeowner Phillip Stonaker.  “Today when they handed us the keys and they were in hand, ‘We finally did it’ is what we were saying and giggling to each other and daydreaming about everything we could do with this space.”

The house is part of the “Geometry in Construction” program that helps high school students build an industry-certified home as part of their math curriculum. 

-Bryan Reed, 9News

Where and how to go trail running in Colorado with your kids

Updated March 2021.

Before I had kids I was trail running almost daily.  I live in Colorado where I am surrounded by steep and rocky trails, and after my 2nd son was born I was wondering how I would keep up my favorite past-time with a double jogging stroller.

Well, I am here to tell you that trail running with kids is easier than you think!  Here are 7 tips to help you get back out on the trails:

#1. Get a good stroller.

The word “good” is relative in this sentence.  You don’t need to spend a lot of money on a stroller; sometimes a second-hand stroller might be better for trail running; the trail is going to beat it up.

Ensure the stroller has knobby tires, front shocks and good suspension; it is important for the snow and ice. If you’re going to spend the money, Thule Chariot Lite Multisport Trailer & Stroller is a lightweight stroller, jogger bike trailer and ski pulk designed for active families. 

Stroller Hack: If you can’t afford or don’t want to pay for a new stroller, but want to ensure your stroller is ready for stroller trail running regardless of the climate. Switch your wheels out. Purchase knobby tires from your local bike shop for the back tires and purchase a BOB front wheel. It is significantly cheaper than buying a new stroller.

#2:  Strap em’ in and lock it up.

You may be thinking “of course”, but you wouldn’t believe how many people don’t strap in their kids.  On a trail that is rocky or with any kind of incline/decline make sure that they are in tight!   If you have a front tire that has a swivel option, make sure that it is locked.  This will ensure that when you hit bumps or rocks the front tire goes straight over them, giving you and your kids a smoother ride.

#3:  Where to go trail running in Denver

To discover stroller-friendly trails near you, go to or, or go to the map feature on your phone and pinpoint your current location. Then search for any large green patch close by, which usually indicates a park. Find the name of the park and go to the parks official website, you can usually find trail maps, trail information, etc. Also check-out our guide to the Best Denver-area parks for beginning trail runners (note: not all of them are stroller-friendly).

You may also need to change your mindset about what is “stroller-friendly”.  There could be a rocky trail near you that you wouldn’t have considered pushing a stroller up but you will never know if you can do it until you try.

#4:  Got Brakes?

If possible, ensure you get a stroller with a hand brake. Note, if you are purchasing an older model jogging stroller second-hand, they might not have a hand brake. Therefore, ensure you wear the safety strap tightly around your wrist when running on the trails to help stop the stroller easier.

#5:  It’s all about that form, bout’ the form, no walking.

When going up steep hills, lean into the stroller and straighten your arms so all the weight isn’t in your biceps and keep moving.  You need forward momentum to keep that stroller from rolling backward so don’t stop until you get to the top! When running on steep downhill’s with a jogging stroller, lean back slightly and take short quick steps.  Let your quads do the work to slow you down.

#6:  Learn how to do high rocks and stairs.

You can push a jogging stroller, especially a single jogger on most hiking trails- it just depends on how adventurous you are.  If you come upon some rocky sections, don’t turn back.  Here are a couple of tips that will help you conquer those rocks and keep on trekking!

  • Lift the front tire up the rock and once it is on top or over the rock lift the back tires up and over, repeat this motion until you are over the rocks or up the stairs.  This isn’t fast but it works.  If you look like you are inch-worming the stroller up the rocks then you are doing it right.  Just think about how much of a great upper body workout you are getting!
  • On steep, rocky downhill’s it is also easier and safer to lift the front tire and slowly let the back tires drop down from rock to rock
  • If it gets too hairy, get the kiddos out.  Push the stroller through the difficult section and then go back for the kids (or if they are old enough have them hike that part on their own)

#7:  No headphones.

The point of trail running is to access places deep in nature.  Take this time to immerse yourself in the beauty and sounds of wildlife all around you.  This is also the perfect opportunity to connect with your kids on a more fundamental level.  Help to expand their world by expanding yours!

Now it is time to get out and rock those trails.  We’d love to hear about your favorite local stroller-friendly hiking or jogging trail.

Lauren Jones is the mom of 2 amazing boys, has her degree in exercise science, is a competitive obstacle course racer, trail runner and seasoned stroller runner.  
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. While clicking these links won’t cost you extra money, they help us keep this site up and running. See our disclosure policy. 

Treehouse Adventure Park in Bailey is a high-flying adventure

The Treehouse Adventure Park is a unique climbing experience located in beautiful Bailey, Colorado, just 35 miles from Denver. Set in the ponderosa treetops, their environment closely resembles an Ewok village, or a Swiss Family Robinson treehouse.

Their self-guided zip lines and challenge bridges are designed to engage participants of any skill level and age.

Ben and Jerry’s shares their Edible Cookie Dough Recipe!

There hasn’t been a lot of highlights in 2020 but this is one of them: Ben and Jerry’s is sharing their Edible Cookie Dough Recipe!

No lie, I still remember the first time I had their edible cookie dough ice cream. In college, I visited Provo, Utah on my Thanksgiving break and we stopped at a gas station for a snack…and that is when my friend introduced it to me. Mind blown! 

How To Make Raw Cookie Dough That’s Safe To Eat

It’s tempting to sneak a scoop of your regular chocolate chip cookie dough recipe before it heads into the oven. But even your inner cookie-stealing kid knows that it’s not safe. So how do you make edible cookie dough that you can dig into with reckless abandon? There are two keys: 1) making an eggless cookie dough, and 2) not forgetting to heat treat flour for the recipe. Eggs and untreated flour have a high likelihood of containing contaminants like Salmonella and E. coli.

How to Heat Treat Flour

There are two main ways to heat treat flour so that it’s safe to eat in edible cookie dough. The easiest method is to microwave your flour on high until it reaches 165°F throughout. Use an instant-read thermometer to make sure that it has all reached 165°F, then stir it into your edible cookie dough recipe as usual. The other method is to heat your flour in a conventional oven. Spread the flour out on a rimmed baking sheet and bake it in a preheated oven at 300°F in 2-minute intervals, checking the temperature after each interval until it reaches 165°F throughout.


  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tbsp. heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup flour
  •  ½ cup chocolate chips

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time:  15 minutes 
Total Yield: About 2 cups

Go to Ben and Jerry’s for instructions and additional information including their Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe!