We consider ourselves lucky to both live and work in the Highland neighborhood, where the holiday spirit is alive and well. If you look closely, you’ll see plenty of storefronts proudly displaying interesting and original wreath creations – entries in the the annual merchant holiday wreath contest.  This year, the contest was judged by Highland resident and Westword Editor Patty Calhoun and Luc Halstead, an articles editor at 5280 magazine. The wreaths were not only judged on their beauty, but how well they told the story of the businesses they represent.

Shapes Salon took the grand prize, with a wreath filled with a variety of hair products in shades symbolizing the “color wheel” that stylists use daily. In addition to bragging rights, salon owner Richelle Bishop-Gonzales and her team also get to display their grand champion trophy. Congrats!

Second place went to the Navajo Arts District for a colorful wreath featuring an assortment of cards and paint brushes representing all the galleries in the district. Lulu’s Furniture took third place for a festive wreath made out of a lamp shade and Jinji Cycles earned an honorable mention for a wreath crafted from an old tire frame. Check out the pictures of all the great wreaths below:

We were also thrilled to catch up with our fellow business owners at the second annual LoHi Merchant Party, generously hosted by Highland Tap and Burger. The holidays remind us just how vital collaboration is to our business. As 2012 draws to a close, we want to thank you for your continued partnership and support. It is good friends and business associates like you who make our job a pleasure all year long.

2012 has been a successful year for our company, bringing new connections and business ventures that have helped grow our agency. With the addition of a few talented and knowledgeable professionals, we have expanded our company’s reach and broadened our expertise. Look for updates on our website this coming year that will reflect our growing list of services.

May our holiday season and New Year be filled with much joy, happiness and success. We look forward to reconnecting with you in the coming year and hope our business relationship continues for many years.

Happy New Year! I am excited and hopeful about what 2012 holds, especially after such an eventful year in 2011.

Last year, The Stasko Agency developed campaigns to launch everything from a new outdoor gear protection system to comfort food-filled waffle cones. We also rekindled relationships with former colleagues and friends and helped them promote a variety of projects.

I am proud of what we accomplished and thought I’d share a few highlights from 2011:

  • Crafty Ladies: In March, Highland Tap & Burger introduced the Crafty Ladies Beer Club, giving beer-loving babes a great reason to gather. We helped spread the word about the club, whose members meet twice monthly for tastings and to learn about their favorite beers from the craft brewers who make them. Here is 9News Reporter Heidi McGuire interviewing the club’s former spokesperson, Amy Pardee, back in April. The Crafty Ladies Beer Club is the brainchild of one of the Highland Tap and Burger owner’s Juan Padro, and his dynamic team!

  • Urbandwellers Showroom Shines: We’re huge fans of urbandwellers partners Larry Beard Jr. and Bruce Littlehorn and their unique, space-saving furnishings. So, we were thrilled to help them unveil their 1,000-square foot showroom in the Water Tower Lofts downtown. The space (which doubles as their home) landed on the cover of The Denver Post’s Lifestyle section in November.

  • Growing Good Food Locally: We learned a lot about the importance of sustainable farming last summer when we launched a campaign to promote Circle Fresh Farms – a network of farms that produces organic, pesticide-free produce in greenhouses year-round. Our early efforts gained the company coverage in a slew of papers in the Boulder area (Longmont Times-Call, Boulder Daily Camera, Boulder County Business Report) where one of its farms is thriving. A second campaign to promote a program that helps turn returning veterans into farmers, drew attention from 9News, 7NEWS and the Denver Business Journal.

  • LoHi Merchants Join Forces: This past summer, I worked with LoHi realtor Paul Tamburello to create a way for neighborhood business owners to share information and resources and promote each other to residents. The LoHi Merchants Collaborative, which meets monthly, helps achieve those goals and allows local businesses to market the neighborhood more effectively. We are working on several initiatives to drive business to LoHi, including a welcome basket for new residents and a shuttle that would run from downtown to Highland. Our next meeting is slated for 5:30 p.m. on January 30th. If you’d like more information, drop me a line here.

  • Protecting Precious Gear: Driving into the garage with a bike still mounted on your car’s roof rack can leave you in tears, which is why our friends at HeadsUp Systems decided to prevent anyone from suffering that sad fate. Their wireless alert system warns drivers as they approach their garages, reminding them about the bikes, kayaks, canoes and other equipment they may have mounted on top of their vehicles. In addition to garnering a bevy of trade industry press, the company’s unique product was also recently featured in a 9News story about great holiday gifts. You can view the story here.

  • Paris Celebrates a Silver Anniversary: Helping entrepreneurs mark significant milestones is always satisfying, but providing support for Paris On the Platte’s 25th birthday party was particularly special, given the memories we’ve built there. And thanks to a mention in Penny Parker’s Post column, both longtime patrons and new customers turned out for the celebration and shared their stories of the legendary cafe and bar.

  • Developer David Zucker’s Real Estate Deals: Zocalo Community Development, led by David Zucker, kept us busy last year. In September, we helped the company announce plans to build a 13-story, 220-unit apartment project at Union Station. A month later, we worked with David to announce the sale of its downtown hi-rise apartment building Solera. The sale was a record for the state of Colorado and garnered the attention of the Denver Business Journal, Inside Real Estate, The Denver Post and Yahoo! Finance.

  • Bobo’s Create a Buzz: A waffle cone filled with macaroni and cheese instead of mint chocolate chip ice cream? It may sound strange, but it’s actually a delicious mobile meal, launched last fall by Little Man Ice Cream. Called Bobo Cones, the new cold weather fare passed KDVR’s Dan Daru’s taste test when he sampled a macaroni and cheese-filled Bobo Cone during the station’s morning broadcast. The cones were also featured in the Huffington Post and on several food blogs including IceCream News.

  • Menchie’s Makes Highland a Hot Spot for FroYo: We wrapped up the year by introducing LoHi residents to Menchie’s, a frozen yogurt shop that just opened an outpost not far from North High School. For its opening celebration, Menchie’s hosted fundraisers for The Tennyson Center for Children and the Rocky Mountain Rollerpunks. Here’s a great shot of Rollerpunks members hugging the Menchie’s mascot.

I look forward to continuing our momentum and making new connections in 2012!

Forget book clubs and knitting circles. If you want to hang with the cool crowd, check out the Crafty Ladies Beer Club at Highland Tap and Burger. The gathering of beer-loving babes has become one of the hottest tickets in town since Metromix Host Heidi McGuire featured the club on April 14th on the 9 p.m. broadcast on KTVD-My20. Check out Heidi’s great report here and this photo of Heidi in action.

After the report aired, the May 3rd meeting of the Crafty Ladies sold out. Since demand was so high, Stasko Agency client Highland Tap and Burger added another event on May 17th.

Don’t let the name “Crafty Ladies” give you the wrong idea—this is not your typical gathering of women. While there is still plenty of time to share gossip, these ladies don’t come to do all the talking. And they certainly aren’t drinking tea.

The club is the brainchild of Amy Pardee (pictured below), who started the Crafty Ladies so that like-minded women have a time and a place to come together and share their knowledge and passion for beer. Amy invites professionals from different breweries around Colorado to attend each meeting to talk about the beer making process and answer all the ladies’ burning questions about craft beer.

Past events have included guests from New Belgium Brewing Company, Left Hand Brewing Company, Avery, and Ska brewing company (Since Ska is currently without a female representative, we had to make an exception and invite a gentleman).

Don’t miss your chance to learn, drink and mingle with the Crafty Ladies. To sign up for the May 17th meeting please email Amy Pardee here.

A big part of my job involves hosting events to help clients gain exposure and form valuable relationships with audiences they want to reach. Now, I’m not going to lie – “party” planning sounds fun, but it’s actually a lot of work! Luckily, the Stasko Agency team helped coordinate two great events recently that went off without a hitch.

On March 10th, we promoted a reception at the Denver Press Club for event planners. The purpose was to raise awareness about what a great venue the historic Press Club is for a variety of gatherings. We’re happy to report that the event was a huge success with several attendees exploring the possibility of booking the Press Club for a range of events – from a monthly business dinner to a jazz event. Just look at all these happy attendees!

I want to thank the following individuals for their support and participation in the event: Bruce Goldberg, President of The Denver Press Club and columnist at the Denver Business Journal; Jen Lester, Board Member of The Denver Press Club and co-owner of Philosophy Communications; and Carmen Green, Press Club General Manager.

I also owe a big debt to my intern, Marisa Stainkamp, who assisted me from the beginning to the end of the campaign and Denise Connor, former president of the Concierges Association, who brought a huge amount of enthusiasm and energy to the table and reached out to the event community. We couldn’t have done this event without everyone’s participation and help.

This past Monday, we used our event planning skills to introduce Highland Tap and Burger to the very influential concierge community. The popular eatery presented a menu tasting for the Concierges Association of Colorado, which includes concierges from the Brown Palace, the Ritz Carlton, the Loews Denver Hotel, and the Cherry Creek Shopping Center concierge desk. The event drew 35 concierges, who enjoyed such Highland Tap specialties as the Cutthroat Porter Braised Short Rib sandwich, Stranahan’s Barrel Smoked Chicken Wings and the Chimi Burger – a 1/3 pound Angus burger covered with aged white cheddar cheese, chimichurri sauce and lettuce. The concierges were also treated to a flight of craft beer. Check out the tasty line-up.

Our goal was to expose the concierges to a place “locals” hang out. The hope is that concierges will recommend Highland Tap to out-of-town visitors looking for local flavor.

Please keep us in mind if you’re looking to organize an event to raise your profile!

Our friends at Highland Tap and Burger are a creative bunch. They’ve worked hard to show patrons that their charming neighborhood tavern is so much more than just a sports bar. In fact, Highland Tap and Burger is turning into a great spot for a variety of gatherings.

Case in point: On February 25th, Highland Tap and Burger played host for town hall meeting and fundraiser for Denver mayoral candidate James Mejia. The event drew a great crowd, who heard the aspiring mayor-to-be outline his plans to improve the local economy and focus more attention on education. Here, Highland Tap co-owner Juan Pardo mingles with James Mejia.

Shifting from fundraisers to fine food – Juan appeared on the Gabby Gourmet show on 630 KHOW the very next day to plug the pub’s participation in Denver Restaurant Week. Highland Tap and Burger is offering a screaming deal – a $52.80 dinner for four, that includes two appetizers, four burgers and four draft beers or house wines. Couples can enjoy dinner for two (one appetizer, two burgers and two draft beers or house wines) for just $26.80. Check out Juan promoting Highland Tap on air.

Finally, on March 1st, Highland Tap and Burger drew more than 30 of Denver’s loveliest beer drinkers for the first monthly meeting of the Crafty Ladies Beer Club. The women’s-only craft beer club will meet the first Tuesday of each month to hear a speaker from one of our fine local breweries discuss all things beer – from how the ale is made to what food pairs best with a certain type of Pilsner. This month, the speaker was Kelly Tretter, a microbiologist with New Belgium Brewery.
The first event was a tremendous success and we look forward to many more festive meetings. Just look at how happy these beautiful beer drinkers are!

With March Madness and Fat Tuesday on the horizon, there’s lots more in store at Highland Tap. To celebrate Mardi Gras, Highland Tap will be offering $4 Hurricanes and $2 Southern Comfort Lime shots.

For more information click here or “like” Highland Tap and Burger on Facebook.

Our clients are offering something for everyone this Valentine’s Day – from couples who want to start the day toasting with mimosas to singles looking to end the day with a great burger and beers.

Gallop Cafe is giving sweethearts a good reason to get up early, with a Valentine’s Day brunch featuring a blend of breakfast specialties as well as heartier fare. Available from 6:30 a.m. until 3 p.m., the brunch will also include half-priced wines, two for one margaritas and two for one Bloody Marys.

The Gabby Gourmet gave Gallop lots of love earlier this month during her noon segment on 7News, highlighting such Gallop mainstays as Soul of Autumn Eggs Benedict and Shepherd’s Pie – both included in the Valentine’s Day brunch. Here are Gallop owners Glen Baker and Dave Grafke getting cozy with Gabby on the set.

For those searching for evening options, Highland Tap and Burger is offering a four-course dinner for two, complete with wine and beer pairings. The special Valentine’s Day deal (which is $38 not including alcohol), includes an Amuse Bouche, Two Hearts Salad (fried artichoke hearts, Haystack goat cheese and hearts of palm), and the Surf ‘N Turf burger – a one-third pound burger topped with lump crab meat, grilled asparagus and bearnaise sauce. The restaurant was recently reviewed by the Denver Post’s Bill Porter, who called Highland Tap and Burger “a place for a raucous good time in a sprawling room, a wide range of brewed beverages, and an ambitious menu presided over by a top-drawer chef, Elijah Odell, and a friendly, attentive staff.” You can read the review here.

Of course, if you want to give that someone special a gift that will last a lifetime, consider couples massage classes. In honor of Valentine’s Day, Symmetry Therapeutic Massage spa is offering three-hour massage classes for just $150 per couple. Couples can choose from traditional massage or specialties such as Thai massage and hot stone. Symmetry also has couples massage sessions if you prefer leaving the work to someone else.

We feel so lucky to have so many great Valentine’s Day options so close to home. Happy Valentine’s Day!

We’re thrilled to share the news that popular hot spot Highland Tap and Burger is our newest client! The neighborhood eatery and pub opened last September and has been drawing steady crowds ever since, thanks to its friendly atmosphere and food that is several notches above typical bar fare.

If you want to learn more about the mastermind behind Highland Tap’s delicious dishes, check out Westword writer Lori Midson’s interview with Executive Chef Eli Odell here. Several of the restaurant’s signature items were also featured by the Gabby Gourmet as part of her “Food Finds” feature on 7News. Here’s a great pic of Gabby with Eli and Highland Tap Owner Juan Pardo.

Even more impressive than the food, is just how entrenched Highland Tap is in the community. The restaurant sponsors the North High School wrestling team and has hosted fundraisers for A.C.T.S Resource Center and Servicios de la Raza among others. The restaurant has also created a Wednesday night running club, whose members meet at the bar and then embark on a 5K loop around the neighborhood. <!– /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:Cambria; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:3 0 0 0 1 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:Cambria; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1;} —

We’re proud to call Highland Tap a client and can’t wait to help them grow their business! Hopefully, we’ll see you there on Super Bowl Sunday!