Black Forest Shopping
A very personal and eclectic set of items for sale in the heart of the Black Forest. Owner Kim features local crafts, arts, soaps, scents and all sorts of other interesting items for your viewing and shopping pleasure.
The great and friendly reception is always included. We enjoyed spending some time with Kim in her little shop.
Sadly, she told us that Black Forest development is about to claim her cabin. But, the wonderful builders have offered to move her into a nice steel building. So, I guess soon it will be "Kim's Steel Building" instead of Kim's Kabin. Sigh.
What to buy: Soaps, scents, artwork, blankets, rustic furniture, etc.
What to pay: Varies. Prices were reasonable for the various items, IMHO.
Black Forest Warnings and Dangers
Back in 1966-67, when I lived in the Black Forest, it was wayyyyy beyond Colorado Springs' city limit. There was a huge plain that gently swept up to a higher point covered with thick ponderosa pine growth, aka the Black Forest. This was country living at its best.... independent and "real" folks living outside of the city, feeding their horses, building their barns and such. I loved it.
I was horrified when I returned to Black Forest in 2004. Colorado Springs sprawl is only a few miles from the Forest. And we're not just talking city growth, folks. It's as UGLY as it gets... mile after mile of UGLY townhouses and developments. God knows why anyone would want to live in such an atrocious place. No character. No welcome nature. No humanity. Just awful.
In the accompanying photo, you see the horrid development monster as it gallops toward the openness of what plain is left before Black Forest. Give it another 3-5 years, and it'll all be gone.
Which song included the words
"they paved paradise and put up a parking lot"? This is one of the uglier examples of this phenomenon. It makes me sick.
Black Forest Favorites
Favorite thing: I remember the Black Forest as being a community that revered the old ways, the antique and the historical.
Mind you, this was not a land of outhouses and iceboxes, folks....it was a middle class community. It's just that if someone had a chance between doing something in modern brick verses old-style log, there was a good chance that historical would win out.
Can you tell how much I loved living here when I was a boy?
Fondest memory: My wonderful two years living in this fast-disappearing little community.
Favorite thing: Thirty years ago, I lived in the Black Forest. It was a great place to grow up and live as a kid. A close-knit community of like-minded folks who didn't do city life. A community of log public buildings and all dirt roads. We were easily 25 miles away from anything remotely part of "civilized" Colorado Springs. It was wonderful.
This year when I returned, I was horrified. The Forest is still separate from the Springs, but just barely. There are shopping centers, and even a damned Subway. I have nothing against Subway, folks...I've eaten my share of their goodies. But it just isn't right for what I think of when I remember Black Forest. I remember the community center and the community church. I remember the tack store, where everyone bought horse feed and saddles. The Forest still stands, but barely.
And, just a few miles away, the development creep of Colorado Springs plods towards the Forest. Acres and acres of faceless and souless neighborhoods and houses, as far as the eye can see. In his song from the Eagles' "Hotel California" album, Don Henley wrote...
"they put up a bunch of ugly house, and Jesus did people buy 'em." He also wrote "call someplace paradise, kiss it goodbye." So true.
Anyway, my favorite thing about Black Forest is what it was for me as a youngster. I'll never forget my short time in paradise.
Fondest memory: Living in such a special place.
There's something special about a place where kids ride horses for fun instead of watching TV. And, how long has it been since any of YOU lived in a place where everyone knew everyone else, and Saturday night meant community square dance night at the town hall?
NOTE, in the picture below, I show the old Black Forest community church. When I lived in the forest, this was one of three public buildings.
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