Latest News – December 11

Mt. Massive Liquors Open, Ready to Serve in Leadville

It seems like every street corner in Leadville has a story to tell. And the southwest corner of Poplar and E. 11th Street is no different. For months, residents have watched as the lot that stood empty for years, was finally seeing construction. Now, as another new business in Leadville opens its doors, residents can literally see the glass as half-full . . . of beer! Welcome Mt. Massive Liquors!Spac_50Mt Massive Liquor _Time Lapse

Spac_50What It Really Takes to Start a Business in Leadville

“There’s going to be more things in life that you’re going to regret not doing, than doing,” said Philip Matsen, who along with his wife Becky, own the newly constructed building, as well as the liquor store. Last February, the couple who lives in Eagle County, bought the property from native Leadville residents Kenny and Beth Donoher, owners of Silver City Printing and Office Supply.

 “We had originally looked at the old High Country Restaurant which is now Earl’s, but we kinda got cold feet and the economy was a little rough,” explained Matsen when asked how the process of opening a business in Leadville came together for him. “Then we looked at this property again and said ‘let’s do it!’ So we went for it and this is where we’re at right now.”

And so, on the SW corner of Poplar (Highway 24) and E. 11th Street you can find Mt. Massive Liquors. Construction of the new-build began in April, clipped along all summer, and saw some fairer Fall weather, propelling the project to the finish line. The new business officially opened December 9. The liquor store will be open Monday thru Saturday from 9 a.m. – 10 p.m., and Sundays from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

The store boasts an ample wine selection, as well as the standard micro-brews and liquor specialties consumers have come to expect. That selection, combined with Manager Katie Langdon’s extensive knowledge should be able to meet any specific needs or requests from Lake County residents.

Mt. Massive Liquor store Manager Katie Langdon (Center) stands in the new business, with owners Philip Matsen (left) and wife Becky (right) at the official ribbon cutting on Monday. Photo: Leadville Today.

Mt. Massive Liquor store Manager Katie Langdon (center) stands in the new business, with owners Philip Matsen (left) and wife Becky (right) at the official ribbon cutting. Photo: Leadville Today.

Langdon, who lives in Eagle County, has years of experience working in the restaurant business and for a liquor distributing company, which should add to the overall customer service experience. In addition, the store opens with a full staff ready to sell you the libations you serve to others!

“We’ve been lucky to have found a really amazing staff of people to work with us,” said Langdon. She added that the Leadville Workforce Center was an invaluable asset. In fact, “every one of our workers came as a direct response of our work with them (workforce).”

What other kind of support did the new business get locally during the project? Clearly, the team saw the value in joining the Leadville/Lake County Chamber of Commerce, as there was a ribbon-cutting ceremony held on Monday, Dec. 7.

“The City of Leadville was great to work with, although I did run into a few little hiccups here and there, but nothing major,” concluded Matsen.

Listed among the new-build assets is that original concrete slab that Kenny and Beth poured years ago. “We did sand it, and finish it, but thought it’d be fun to leave that in the store,” explained Matsen. In additional the store has 100% LED lighting and much of the building blocks for the freshly painted, purple building were reclaimed materials from different projects Matsen has been involved with over the years. So, stop in, see it for yourself, and pick up a six-pack!

Mt. Massive Liquors is located at 1017 Poplar Street, kitty-corner from The Family Dollar. Upstairs, the building has two commercial office spaces which are currently occupied by Independence Realty and Property Management, and Stewart Title.Spac_50

Bronco Pride Lives on Corner of Poplar & 11th Street

As the boom and bust business cycle in Leadville takes an upward turn, the story of many corner lots will no doubt be changing. To that end, Leadville Today wanted to share one about this corner of the world, compliments of Beth and Kenny Donoher who sold the property to the Matsens last February.

During the "bust" cycles, it was not uncommon for old buildings to turn into billboards, especially where Bronco fans were involved. This old building which sat on the corner lot at Poplar and 11th Street is a fine example of that! Photo: Kenny and Beth Donoher.

During the “bust” cycles, it was not uncommon for old buildings to turn into billboards, especially where Bronco fans were concerned. This old building, which sat on the corner lot at Poplar and 11th Street, is a fine example of that! Photo: Kenny and Beth Donoher.

“Yeah we had that lot for a long time,” said Kenny, as his wife and business partner Beth explained that they had poured the foundation back in the mid-80s, in anticipation of building a new location for Silver City Printing. But unfortunately, layoffs at the Climax Mine began as the cement was setting up, putting the brakes on the project.

Eventually, their office supply business ended up in its current location on E. 4th Street behind the Scarlet Tavern. Over the years, the couple had interest in the property. After all, it’s right on the main drag in and out of town, and in the real estate business, it’s all about location, location, location! But while the years clicked on without any buyers, the Donohers did find some useful purposes for the property; one came in 1987.

The Denver Broncos were returning to play in the Superbowl for the second time. It was an exciting time in Colorado sports and Cloud City Bronco fanatics were fully onboard.

“Kenny said it was like painting with glue because it was so cold when they did it,” recalled Beth, referring to the giant billboard painted on the side of an old building that also sat on the property for many years. No doubt it was a challenging feat, as the sign would have been painted in the heart of winter for a January Superbowl.

As many may recall, the Broncos lost that year to the New York Giants in Superbowl XXI. But even though the sign-painting efforts did not yield a victory in football, the enthusiastic “Go Broncos” sign will no doubt be recorded in the “win” column for Leadville business, with the best yet to be . . . on the corner of Poplar and 11th Street!

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