3. No, I'm not going to go all naked spa on you now. Instead, I will follow up on the worst-dressed riff by noting that the Crocs company started here. And Boulder is currently the gator-way to the world's largest Crocs collection. You can buy Crocs sandals, Crocs sneakers, Crocs God-awful gardening clogs, or Crocs accessories (like this hat, marked for ages 2 to 4) at the Crocs store on the Pearl Street Mall.
8. Sure, you can climb rocks or go mountain-biking here. But for the more sedate....or rather, for the more cerebral....get a science lesson at one of Boulder's three national labs. The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) studies air and auroras and other natural wonders of the atmosphere. Its headquarters is an architectural wonder, designed by one I.M. Pei. Tours are free and start at noon on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) focuses on the ocean (naturally), the atmosphere, and the weather. In fact, the National Weather Service is under its domain. During a visit to NOAA's headquarters in Boulder (open to the public on Tuesdays at 1:00 PM), you'll see the Space Weather Prediction Center, a National Weather Service Forecast Office, and the Science on a Sphere room.The last employs the latest technology to project planetary data (including storms, tsunamis, and climate change maps) onto a six-foot-in-diameter globe. Very cool.
Finally, meet the physicists at NIST, the National Institute of Standards and Technology. What's that, you ask? Well, it's complicated and you'll just have to take a tour (Tuesdays at 10 AM or Thursdays at 1 PM) to get a grasp of it. While at NIST, you'll learn about...and see...atomic clocks, along with all sorts of other precision measurement tools. And you'll get to test out the physics phrases you learned from The Big Bang Theory on NIST brainiacs. By the by, whenever you take a tour of a government facility, it's guaranteed you'll need your photo ID.
9. The Boulder County Farmers Market is one of the best around. From April through October, you can find farmers, chefs and earthy artisans hanging out near Boulder's Central Park on Saturday mornings and Wednesday evenings. Eat, drink and be merry.