DENVER -- Every January, amid the martini bars and gastropubs that line this ambitious city's downtown, a procession of long-horned cattle and cowboys weaves through the streets of Denver.
The parade is the climax of the National Western Stock Show, which has been an annual staple of mile-high winters for 105 years.
During 16 days in an arena three miles northeast of Denver's high-rises, luxury condos and spiffy new art museum, ranchers and breeders from throughout the West show off their wares to hundreds of thousands of spectators. It's a rodeo, horse show and trade show all at once. Outside of Broncos pro football and killer powder at A-Basin, there's little else that gets this town as excited.
Which is why it came as a shock to many when the Stock Show announced last month that it wanted to leave Denver. And, to add insult to injury, the show's desired destination is the neighboring suburb of Aurora.