And it’s Monday again. Where did the weekend go? We don’t know either.

For today’s top story, Jessica Mordacq covers Arc’teryx’s opening on Pearl Street just a few doors down from Patagonia. The opening continues a trend towards more chain outdoor retailers on the mall. In earlier days of Boulder, gear companies clustered on The Hill and many were individually owned. Now, not so much.

Also, the city is partnering with American Medical Response to better serve those making 911 calls. And Boulder’s first police monitor is moving to California. That and other community updates will hopefully get you through the first days of the week.

We’ll see you Wednesday.

— Tim, reporter

What to know today

  • Hello, heat. We meet again: Back into the 80s this week. But remember that cool weather a couple days ago? Boy was that nice.
  • Sheriff requests funding for mental health counselors: The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office is requesting about $428,000 annually for four mental health counselors at the Boulder County Jail. Pelle said he does not have enough staff to be in compliance with a 2021 state law restricting the use of solitary confinement. The move might relate to a lawsuit against the Sheriff’s Office regarding a man who was beaten up at the jail on April 4 of this year.
  • City of Boulder launches 911 Emergency Nurse Navigation Program: The service, brought by the city and American Medical Response, determines what care a person should receive when 911 is called.
    • 911 callers who have non-emergency injuries or illnesses will be directed to a Colorado State Licensed-nurse for assessment. That nurse will then assess the caller’s symptoms and refer them to the most appropriate medical care.
    • Such medical care could include a virtual visit with a board-certified emergency physician, home health suggestions, or non-ambulance transport to a non-emergency local healthcare provider.
    • More direct communication and care, the city says, can save patients time and money. Medical information provided during calls will continue to be considered private patient information.
  • Deadline for small business disaster loan: Colorado small businesses have until Sept. 30, to apply for a Small Business Administration federal disaster loan for economic injury caused by the Marshall Fire and straight-line wind event. Small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may apply for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. As of July 2022, FEMA had approved $103 million in SBA loans for homeowners and businesses affected by the fire. That’s compared to $1.96 million FEMA dispensed in direct aid to households in need.
  • Police monitor accepts new position in California: Boulder’s Independent Police Monitor Joey Lipari announced he will leave the city on Sept. 30 to become a special investigator at the Office of the Inspector General for the Los Angeles Police Department.
    • Lipari was the city’s first independent police monitor, hired in July 2020, to serve as a liaison between the Boulder Police Department and the city’s volunteer-led Police Oversight Panel. The group was seated in 2021, after city police drew their guns on a Black Naropa student in 2019, and following a summer of national racial reckoning.
    • Lipari helped author the oversight panel’s first major report of allegations of police misconduct. The report was released earlier this year. His departure comes as the Police Oversight Panel has struggled with a heavy workload and high volunteer turnover. The nine-member panel is currently operating with eight members.
  • Boulder County district attorney releases crime data: Michael Dougherty joined eight of the state’s top prosecutors to release data that shows trends and disparities in how they seek punishment for certain crimes. Some takeaways:
    • Since 2017, the number of case filings for misdemeanors — traffic violations, indecent exposure, theft — have increased about 57%.
    • The number of filings for petty crimes, such as trespass and littering, have also increased. But the number of people sentenced to jail for less serious crimes has decreased. Some of the difference may be explained by a 2019 state law that reclassified drug possession to lessen the severity of punishment of such charges.
    • The number of people detained in jail before their court date has increased about 10% since 2020.
    • Since 2019, the number of people whose charges were dropped in exchange for completing diversion programs that addressed the underlying cause of the crime — such as drug addition — has dropped by more than half.
  • Suspect arrested in series of crimes on University Hill: Boulder Police identified and arrested the suspect responsible for a series of burglaries and sexual contacts on University Hill last weekend. He was taken to a juvenile detention center where he is being held without bond until Monday. Detectives believe he could be responsible for more incidents in the area. Some charges include:
    • Three felony counts of Second-Degree Burglary. 
    • Two misdemeanor counts of Indecent Exposure. 
    • One misdemeanor count of Attempted Invasion of Privacy for Sexual Gratification. 
    • One felony count of Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft. 
    • One misdemeanor count of Unlawful Sexual Contact.

Go deeper

The Fifth Avenue of gear? With Arc’teryx opening downtown, Boulder approaches 50 outdoor retailers. Nearly half are on Pearl Street.

By Jessica Mordacq

The coronavirus pandemic was devastating for many downtown Boulder businesses, but at least one sector appears to be vibrant: outdoor retailers. 

The City of Boulder is home to an estimated 47 stores that sell gear, clothing and equipment to hikers, runners, bikers, skiers and other outdoor recreationists. That’s more than four times the number of grocery stores, for comparison. Twenty are on the 800-1800 blocks of Pearl Street — more, if you count specialty stores like Bison Tactical’s hunting gear and fishing supply shop Front Range Anglers, plus others on the periphery of the pedestrian walkway. 

And still, the Pearl Street Mall’s collection of these shops keeps growing — especially east of 14th Street. 

Four of the 10 outdoor retailers on that stretch — Backcountry, Black Diamond Equipment, Himali and Stio — opened last year and are all chains. 

Now, outerwear company Arc’teryx will join that crop, at 1468 Pearl Street, when it opens its doors with grand-opening celebrations Sept. 16-25. 

Continue reading…

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BRL picks

🥁 Boulder Philharmonic climate change-themed opening night: On Oct. 8, the Boulder Philharmonic will begin its exploration into “the consequences of human greed and indulgence through musical allegory.” Led by music director Michael Butterman, the philharmonic begins its 2022/23 season with the world premiere of “Ozymandias: To Sell a Planet” by American composer Drew Hemenger.

📕 The Jaipur Literature Festival returns to Colorado: On Sept. 17 and 18 at the Boulder Public Library over 60 authors and speakers — from across the globe —will come together to engage in conversation. The festival is free and accessible to everyone, pre-registration is strongly recommended. Some of the speakers include Gopalkrishna Gandhi, a former diplomat and the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, and André Aciman, the bestselling author of “Call Me by Your Name.”

🏥 Falls Prevention Week: Falls are the leading cause of injuries — whose implications can be fatal — for older adults. Thankfully, many can be prevented. Sept. 19-23, join Boulder County Partners for Falls Prevention to learn how community connections can keep you and your loved ones safe.

🧘 Feel Good Fridays: Most Fridays into December, drop by the University of Colorado Art Museum for a hybrid workshop to learn about a work of art and then participate in a related mindfulness practice. Meditations are open to students, faculty, staff and the public, and there is no need for past experience with meditation.

Covid in Boulder County: Sept. 12, 2022

  • 114 daily new cases (7-day avg.) Up 30% over preceding 7-day avg.
  • 13 patients hospitalized with Covid (7-day avg.) Down from a high of 16 last week.
  • 38% percent of ICU is occupied. Down from avg. of 66% since July 2020.

What else we’re reading

  • CU School of Medicine names first endowed chair in climate medicine, to help physicians address the health consequences of climate change. Jay Lemery, a professor of emergency medicine, will undertake teaching and research that prepares physicians to “synthesize earth science with roots in social vulnerabilities” and to “seek out and lead on opportunities to decarbonize health systems.”


Tim Drugan is the climate and environment reporter for Boulder Reporting Lab, covering wildfires, water and other climate-related issues for Boulder with a focus on explanatory and solutions journalism. He also is the lead writer of BRL Today, our morning newsletter. Tim grew up in New Hampshire and graduated from UNH with a degree in English/Journalism. Email: