But first – a review of Syrup (the restaurant, not the condiment.) We went to Syrup in Cherry creek and it was packed and loud, but the food was worth it. I had the Aztec omelet with chorizo topped with green chile stew. It’s hard to find good green chile around here, I think I just found it. James had the Big easy omelet with shrimp in it and it was good too. We tried the beignets with flavored syrups (butterscotch, cinnamon apple and blackberry) they were delish. The strawberry pancakes were smothered in fresh strawberries and strawberry syrup and Bethany had the Charlie chocolate pancakes, which might have had too much chocolate on them, but they were good all the same. All of their sandwiches looked mighty good too, but we’ll save those for next time.
And on to the festival, which was at Argo park in the middle of Globeville. I wondered where it got that name from…back in the 1800′s the neighborhood sprung up around the Globe Smelting and Refining Company which is where most of the immigrants who lived in the vicinity worked. Denver annexed Globeville in 1902 and the town was pretty isolated from the rest of Denver by the rail line and the river. It got further isolated and broken up when I-25 and I-70 cut through the neighborhood N/S and E/W.
To serve the Russian/Serbian/Polish/Eastern European community of the late 1800′s and early 1900′s two landmark churches were built. Saint Joseph’s Polish Roman Catholic Church and The Holy Transfiguration of Christ Cathedral (which we toured.) (Also The Holy Rosary church was built in 1919 for the community.)
Here are some stained glass windows from the Cathedral and some of the Icons.
The church was built in 1898 and houses Icons and relics of saints, such as a piece of St. Tikhon that was encased with his picture. The Father told us about the relics and icons, the building of the church and the fact that the church didn’t have electric lights until the 1950′s. Why so late? He said that most Orthodox churches were used to having candles for light and it just didn’t occur to them to put in electric lights.
Even now for Saturday vespers they turn off the lights and just use candles, I think that is nice.
If you are wondering, yes you can come to services and participate in everything except communion, that is reserved for the community of Orthodox believers that come to this church on a regular basis.
The festival was about showcasing the immigrant community that built up this neighborhood, that was reflected in the food and the dancing. There was Russian rum baba, Greek baklava, Serbian sarma, Mexican tamales, Italian sausage, Romanian tochitura, International food and a roasted lamb (and lots more.)
For dancing there were Philippine dancers, hula girls, Romanian dancers and other groups performing.
The girls played some kids games, Hannah rocked the ball game, Grace did the puzzle game and Bethany did the stack the hangers game (and other games.) Each time they won they got a prize and tickets, the tickets then got them more prizes like: a care bear, a Tinkerbell book, bracelets, a bead craft, a pencil case and candy. They were very happy with their prizes. Hannah got to do the bounce house all by herself!
We played at the park for a bit.
Then we cooled off and looked over the Iconography work and I bought this book mark.
We watched some dancers and then headed over to 7-11 for a Slurpee to cool off.
I love seeing the inside of these old churches and hearing the story of how the neighborhoods got started around here. Apparently the economic value of the smelters in the early 1900′s was of great importance to the overall Denver economy.
The people who worked for the Globe were not only important for the community they built and the churches that stand now, but also for their sacrifice to our country during the Wars, as seen in this monument at Argo park.
This site has a lot of information about the neighborhood and about the loss of the Globe plant, you can see in a few pictures the demolition of the site. I understand the need to clean up the site, but it’s still a shame to lose a piece of Denver history such as the plant. I hope they retained something of the plant and the stories of the early immigrants who worked there, if not – that would be a shame.
(Globe plant circa 1890 – photo from: http://globevillestory.blogspot.com/2011_05_01_archive.html)