no. 13: Let's Do This Together

How did I get here?

It started with just me and a baby in a stroller. It's what got me thinking about our city’s infrastructure and our attitude toward progress. When you’re rolling a stroller down a bumpy dirt trail next to a busy road, you start thinking about such things.

When you’re riding your bike and you have to cut through parking lots, ride on sidewalks, and navigate sketchy intersections, you start to think about such things. And, when you want to walk to the grocery store with your mom, but you can’t walk side by side because the sidewalk is too narrow, you start to think about such things.

Such things are why I was drawn to the Wheaties Academy. I’m interested in connecting with my neighbors and tapping into ways to bring our community together. I wish everyone in Wheat Ridge could join the Wheaties as we read Peter Kageyama’s Love Where You Live — it’s full of inspirational examples of communities overcoming obstacles not so different from ours in the challenges we face. It gives me hope.

Speaking for myself and my family, Wheat Ridge has opened our hearts in ways we could never have imagined. I want to share that. If we, as a community, understand that we are all in this together, maybe we can work through the issues that divide us and find a common ground through authenticity and connection.

In our Orton Family Foundation’s Community Heart & Soul Field Guide, we learn of Golden’s comprehensive plan which created a compass to guide development, ensuring that any development fit within the physical environment and healthy place values derived from the Golden Vision 2030 plan.

​​We, as citizens of Wheat Ridge have this amazing and unique opportunity to be involved and have a voice—it’s truly up to us all to define our city and what we value. In doing that, we can then be confident in embracing change within that definition—preserving our roots, growing a network of walkable sidewalks and rideable trails, propagating local business, cultivating unique local events, sowing inclusivity, and harvesting the benefits of a thriving, healthy community.

Let’s do this together.

Author: Kimberly DeJong, 2018 Wheatie

Kim has enjoyed living in Wheat Ridge since 2013 where she and her family are probably some of the bikiest folks in town. You may have seen her riding her bright orange cargo bike commuting to work downtown, visiting the farmers market, or grabbing a bite. Kim is a strong believer in buying local and supporting local businesses. She sees Wheat Ridge one of the final frontiers of Denver’s outward growth and believes we can have positive, progressive change if we work together as a community.

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