Coors Field street vendors in a pickle as opening day approaches
DENVER — Some weeks ago, vendors operating hot dog and other carts near Coors Field were notified by mail that they would have to leave locations they have been in since the ballpark opened 20 years ago.
“We were simply told that years ago we were allowed to operate inside the ‘restricted’ Coors Field boundary,” said Joyl Watkins, who was bunning dogs at his winter location near 20th and Curtis Wednesday.
“When we went to Excise and License they told us they were enforcing the regulation because Coors management had requested them to. But when we asked Coors folks they said the move was mandated by the city.”
That left vendors such as Watkins feeling as if they had been thrown a curve ball even before a game has been played at the ball park this season.
“If they want me to move two blocks away from 19th and Market, they will shut me down,” said Adam Kulikowski, who operates another semi-mobile food stand.
“No one even had the gumption to have us meet in person to let us know what was going on and why. If they want me to move, they can come move me! The reasons they are giving us are bogus and it sure would have been nice for them to come to see where we operate to see if in fact we are causing a problem on the sidewalks where we set up shop on game days.”
While the city indicates they simply missed enforcing the Coors space boundary for 20 years, now they say it is time to begin making sure Coors won’t have vendors so close to the park.
The team maintains the move-backs were the idea of the city.
Vendors say it appears there is just a lot of finger-pointing going on, while they will take the financial hit.
One says “move me,” another “ticket me,” and yet another has decided to make the move across the street to an area which will be closer to a cross walk people use to head to the park.