I love the story of how Ian Silverii and Brittany Pettersen met.
On a cold December day at the corner of 13th Avenue and Sherman Street, right in front of Denver’s version of Portlandia, City O’ City, and just a block from the state Capitol, Ian was headed to a meeting and Brittany was standing in the freezing cold with a clipboard.
“Do you have a minute to save the children?” she asked.
“No,” Ian replied, “but I have about 30 minutes to flirt with you.”
I burst out laughing when I read about that encounter on the couple’s wedding website. I met Ian when he had the good sense to introduce himself to me at Hamburger Mary’s and say he was a huge fan of my reporting. His line to Brittany in 2009 was so him: fast and funny.
Their wedding Saturday at the Governor’s Mansion was such a Demapalooza that Sen. Lois Court joked enough lawmakers were present to go into an emergency special session and vote to fund the energy office.
Lakewood High School students who traveled to Washington, D.C., as part of the Close Up program gave the experience high marks.
The students had appointments to see U.S. Sens. Cory Gardner, a Republican, and Michael Bennet, a Democrat, along with their congressman, U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter of Jefferson County. They weren’t planning on meeting Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams but a long security line gave them the chance.
“Meeting with the people who run our government was truly humbling, and our serendipitous meeting with our secretary of state right behind us in line was a great added bonus,” said Kieran Lewis, 15.
Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams turned the annoyance of being trapped in a slow-moving security line outside the Russell Building into something fun this morning when he realized the students standing in front of him were from Lakewood High School.
Williams was headed to see Colorado’s U.S. senators, Michael Bennet, a Democrat, and Cory Gardner, a Republican. It turns out that Lakewood High School teacher Katie Seelbach and her AP U.S. history and government classes were also there to see the pair.
And because the school is in Jefferson County, the students also had an appointment to visit Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Arvada. (Williams stopped by all seven congressional offices Tuesday night but most of the lawmakers were on the House floor getting ready for a vote; the ones he did see were sprinting off to join them.)
The students talked with Bennet about a variety of topics, from immigration to education to college tuition. They were excited to be in D.C. and to be talking with members of their delegation.
When Bennet asked if the students knew what a secretary of state does, there were some interesting answers, from foreign policy to overseeing interstate compacts. The secretary of state actually oversees elections, business registrations, charitable giving and more.
The parade route went right by Williams’ office at 1700 Broadway — he captured a good picture of the orange- and blue-stripe painted on the street for his Facebook page — but he was headed to Washington for the National Association of Secretaries of State winter conference.
After he landed, Williams stopped by all seven congressional offices. In most cases, the representatives had had already headed to the floor for a nighttime vote, but the secretary did manage to catch up with two lawmakers, Republican Ken Buck of Windsor and Republican Doug Lamborn of Colorado Springs.
Williams also had a chance to meet Buck’s new chief of staff, Mac Zimmerman, on his first day on the job. Zimmerman grew up in Denver but has lived in Grand Junction and previously worked for Congressmen Scott McInnis and Tom Tancredo, and for state Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry.