Step back in time on a visit to Redstone |

Step back in time on a visit to Redstone

Jessica Cabe
Glenwood Springs Post Independent
The Redstone Art Gallery has a beautiful back patio area to sit and sip coffee or tea by Coal Creek. The seating area is right in the middle of a sculpture garden, so you can enjoy art inside or out.
Jessica Cabe / Post Independent |

REDSTONE — About 16 miles south of Carbondale on Highway 133 sits a quiet town that’s rich in history and perfect for a day trip.

Redstone has a year-round population of about 130, but business owners guess that about 6,000 visitors walk through their doors every summer.

You’ll see why when you visit; whether it’s the unbeatable scenery, the walkable boulevard with shops, a gallery and a park, the historic Redstone Castle or any of the many outdoor activities, you’re sure to feel your day in Redstone was well-spent.

Possibly the best part of all? There’s no cell service. You’ll remember what it feels like to spend your time outside of the house uninterrupted, and you’ll be able to appreciate with undivided attention all that Redstone has to offer.

This weekend is the 20th annual Redstone Art Show, which runs through Monday on the lawn of the Redstone Inn. Work from 35 artists will be on display and for sale. It includes a variety of artist demonstrations, a couple of book signings, live music from Old Time Jukebox and children’s activities.

Redstone Castle

The biggest draw to the town is Redstone Castle, the privately owned, century-old home of Redstone founder John Osgood, for whom the castle was built. It sits off the beaten path with much of its original furniture, despite passing through different private owners and a brief stint with the IRS.

The castle played host to such movers and shakers as John D. Rockefeller, J. Pierpont Morgan and Teddy Roosevelt in its heyday, and more recently, in 2006, it served as the setting for part of “The Prestige,” the film starring Michael Caine, Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale and Scarlett Johansson.

Visitors are able to tour the Redstone Castle for $15 ($10 for people 65 and older and children 5 to 18, free for children younger than 5) at 1:30 p.m. every day through September. Then, tours take place at 1:30 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. You can contact the castle to request a tour if those times will not work for you.

Tours last for about an hour and a half, and allow attendees to see how the wealthy Osgood lived in the late 1890s and early 1900s. The tour goes through the dining room, sitting room, library, patio, bedrooms and more.

Susan McEvoy, who has worked at the castle for 19 years and as a tour guide for 16 years, said many who take the tour are visiting from surrounding areas, such as Glenwood Springs, Vail, Delta and Grand Junction, but she also sees plenty of out-of-state visitors. She said Coloradans especially enjoy their local history, so being able to see it in person is a thrill.

In general, though, she encourages visitors to come to Redstone to experience a little something different from their daily grind.

“It’s just so much smaller and quainter,” she said. “It really is like stepping back in time.”

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redstone art gallery

One of the must-see stops along Redstone Boulevard is the Redstone Art Gallery. It has been owned for three years by husband and wife Stephanie and Michael Askew, both of whom also are artists represented in the gallery, but the building has been a gallery for 40 years. It was a Catholic church before that for 50 years, and a blacksmith shop before that, and a schoolhouse and supply house before that. The building has been around since 1893.

“It has quite a history,” Stephanie Askew said.

Since taking over the gallery, the Askews have performed a variety of renovations and added onto the property. A back patio with seating is now complete, giving visitors a place to sip coffee or tea and enjoy the sculpture garden.

“This is a place for everybody to come and slow down, take a breather and enjoy the sounds of the river and the rustling of the aspen leaves,” Stephanie Askew said. “It’s just beautiful.”

The Askews also updated the art inventory, bringing in new artists and thinking of creative ways to display the work. Stephanie Askew said she could safely guess at least 75 artists are represented in the gallery, and they work in a wide variety of mediums: paint, pottery, wood, photography, jewelry, metal — almost everything you can think of. The artists are from Redstone or the Roaring Fork Valley.

“I think people like to get away from all the commercial stuff, and this is a place that’s not too far away, but you really do get lost in time,” Stephanie Askew said.

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Shop Redstone Boulevard

In addition to the Redstone Art Gallery, Redstone Boulevard is home to a variety of shops, including the Redstone Company Store, featuring a collection of gifts and home decor; Tiffany of Redstone, a living design studio and gallery showcasing unusual antiques, collectables and more; Wild Horse Enterprises, home of Rocky Mountain Teddy Bears and Rhythm Motion Clocks; and the Redstone General Store, where locals and visitors alike can get their fix of vintage candies, groceries, ice cream and so much more.

Lisa Schlueter has owned the Redstone General Store with her husband, Michael, for eight years. The building has been around since the late 1890s, and it’s been a general store since the 1930s.

“Customers love the old-fashioned look — the baskets and barrels,” Lisa Schlueter said. “It brings them back to their childhood.”

Schlueter said she thinks what visitors love the most about Redstone is the break it gives them from their everyday lives.

“It’s an amazing, beautiful place with no cell service,” she said.

Outdoor Adventures

Redstone, much like the rest of Colorado, offers a wide variety of outdoor fun. Use http://www.outwest as a resource for the best horseback riding, hunting and fishing in town.

OutWest Guides offers a variety of horseback riding trips to fit your wants and needs. You can go on a one-hour ride, all the way up to a five-night ride, with plenty of options in between. Each ride will offer you the opportunity to see some amazing Colorado wildlife, but other than that, you’ll have quite a bit of privacy.

If hunting is more your thing, you can choose from trophy mule deer hunts, bull elk hunts or upland game bird hunts.

And, of course, you’ll find great trout fishing with even better scenery for a nice, relaxing day on the water.


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