Author: Tony White

Anthony James “A.J.” Pettrini: 10/20/1921 – 4/4/2016

At eulogies, it’s customary to say nice things about the departed and how great of an influence they were on our lives, and maybe later, at the reception, less savory stories from a wild past may arise. But for A.J., there is nothing else to say except nice things, exceptional things – because that’s all he was. It’s hard to put into words what “Papa” meant to me and my family. He was a truly humble, loving, strong man; who lived for those around him more than himself. That’s who he was and every story about A.J. has a streak of this in it. He lived a grand life, which began in Detroit in 1921. He was one of five children, born to Italian immigrant parents, on the poor side of town, but he was always surrounded by love. By the time A.J. graduated high school, he had lost his mother and several siblings to illness. He was an outstanding student and while he waited to enlist in the U.S. Army Air Corps, he worked …

Building a dream: Meow Wolf and the House of Eternal Return

A creative storm has been brewing in Santa Fe, N.M. and it’s about to be unleashed in an abandoned bowling alley on the edge of town. Meow Wolf, the renowned Santa Fe arts production company, has found a home in the old Silva Lanes building for its first permanent attraction, “House of Eternal Return,” which opens March 17. Matt King, 31, is one of Meow Wolf’s founders and the fabrication director on the project. He said it will take visitors into new realms which blur the lines between exhibition and adventure. “How do you get people to look at art?” King asks, “This is the culmination of that idea. There is no separation of art and space.” Inside the renovated 20,000 square foot building, located at 1352 Rufina Circle, visitors will enter the exhibit through a life-size Victorian home, complete with quaint front porch and a little front yard. The path exits the house in bizarre ways, including out the back of the refrigerator or crawling through the fireplace; transporting you into the main spectacle …

Remember Me, I’m gone. An ode to Lemmy.

“I always knew the only way was never to live beyond today. They proved me right. They proved me wrong. But, they could never last this long.” -Lemmy The king is dead, dashed from the world in his latter years, leaving a void, a hollowness in a world where he was a juggernaut. Lemmy “Ian” Kilmister died at the age of 70 on Dec. 28, 2015, a few days after his birthday, a few weeks after his band Motorhead’s final tour and forty years after he started a rock group that would inspire millions of rabid fans for decades. Lem’s memorial service in Hollywood on Saturday, Jan. 9 was broadcasted live on the internet, as the international Motorhead family gathered to watch the final tribute to their beloved leader and dear friend. In Denver, TRVE Brewing on South Broadway was the place where many went to watch the service. It’s a heavy metal themed, craft brewery bar – as good of place as any for such an event. The deep, skinny barroom was packed as …

Cannabis-iness: A day in the life of one of Colorado’s largest marijuana dispensaries

Click here for link to full audio story.  For those living in Colorado, and several other states, buying marijuana is not a big deal. You go to the dispensary, get your weed, or whatever cannabis-infused product you’re looking for, and go about your day. There are of course many laws regulating who can buy cannabis, where, when, the quantity and so on. Medical marijuana has been legal in Colorado since 2000, but recreational marijuana was legalized in the state only two years ago, on January 1st, 2014, to much fanfare and global media attention as it was the first time in the world that licensed stores could legally sell weed to basically anyone over the age of 21. Boulder, Colorado has long been a bastion of the hippy movement and liberal countercultures. Most locals will tell you that weed has been a big part of the scene around here for decades. Terrapin Care Station is based in Boulder. It’s one of the largest cannabis retailers in Colorado and they were the first recreational cannabis dispensary to …

Denver COP21 rally one of largest in nation

Follow link below to an audio report from the rally. https://soundcloud.com/whitegarden-photography/denvers-cop21-rally-one-of-nations-largest An estimated 500 people gathered in Denver’s City Park on Sunday, Nov. 29 as part of a global climate rally on the eve of the United Nations’ meeting in Paris on climate change, known as COP21. Over 2,000 communities around the world held similar rallies on this day and local organizers in Denver said theirs was the fourth largest in the nation, clear indication of Coloradans concern for climate awareness. This international campaign was spurred on after organizers in Paris were blocked from publicly gathering over security concerns following the terrorist attacks there earlier in the month. Leanna Stoufer attended the Denver rally, and said climate change is an issue that truly affects everyone and that it is important for her to be present at these rallies, especially on behalf of those in Paris. “We are all in this together. This makes me feel like I am part of humanity and taking action, not just for myself but for everyone else too.” There were nearly …

ACLU of Colorado latest to unveil mobile justice app

Click the link to hear an interview with Natahan Woodliff-Stanley, executive director of ACLU. (https://soundcloud.com/whitegarden-photography/aclu-of-colorado-latest-to-unveils-mobile-justice-app) At a press conference held just outside the Denver Police Headquarters on Thursday, the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado became the most recent state to launch its own mobile justice app, allowing users to securely record police activity, which uploads directly to the ACLU in real time. Nathan Woodliff-Stanley, Executive Director of the ACLU Colorado, says there are several cases of officers attempting to delete incriminating material from mobile devices and this app will prevent that from happening.   “It is about accountability. It is about transparency. But, I don’t consider it to be anti-police,” Woodliff-Stanley said. Colorado is the eighth state to implement its own mobile justice app, which includes a “witness” function that sends notifications of other active apps in the area, such as during a protest or indicating a recording is taking place. There is also a “report” feature that lets the user attach a detailed account to the video after the incident. Woodliff-Stanley says that this …

Papa’s Passport Photo

I worked my way around the frame, finally landing on his eyes. His eyes. His look. I was having a staring contest with a passport photo from 1971. It was my idol and his portrait from some 40 years ago kept making me feel like a timid, confused puppy. I stared at his picture, trying to comprehend him, a man I know so well – I think. My grandfather. Papa. His mass, his presence exuding from this simple photograph overwhelmed me. I don’t know why. His sharp expression, matched by his crisp attire, blasted confidence. He’s a World War II vet, a B-17 pilot, a husband, a father. He’s the man. Thick tie, wide lapels, broad shoulders, a stern look, calm demeanor. Collected. He knows he’s the boss, but he’s not trying to boast. He’s not trying to do anything except get his passport photo made. It’s just how he is. Timeless. He inspired his grandson to live up to his likeness, an adoring image you’d think maybe the kid made up in his head, …

The Journey of Lent at St. John’s Cathedral: An Insight into the Christian holy season

Click here for an Interactive Multimedia Timeline.     Ceremonial flames are lit, ashes imposed on the foreheads of the faithful and solemn prayers are recited. The high ceremonies and formalities of Lent commemorate the life, and death, of Jesus Christ and marks one the holiest seasons in the Christian calendar. For nearly two months, beginning around mid-February, there are various church services unique to this season. There are gatherings in honor of The Last Supper and Jesus’s crucifixion, as well as joyous, colorful services on Easter Sunday which celebrate his resurrection. But what does all this religious pomp and circumstance represent? What does Lent mean to Christians and, honestly, how does the Easter Bunny fit into all this, if at all? Lent is often stereotyped as 40 days of self-denial where people give up something as a sign of faith, the long stretch of discipline ending on Easter Sunday with its chocolate eggs and pastel colored everything. Peter Eaton was the Dean of St. John’s Cathedral in Denver, an Episcopal church in Capitol Hill, for 13 …