Officials and organizers said they timed it out. They look at the forecast a week in advance to put their plans in place.
“Unfortunately, homelessness in Denver and across the Front Range is increasing,” Stephen Hinkel with the Denver Rescue Mission said.
Brutally cold weather can provide a cold punch to those living in the conditions. Hinkel has seen the increase first-hand between their two shelters on Holly Street and Lawrence Street.
He said the shelters have been at capacity providing shelter for 450 men since Thursday.
“In our 131-year history, we have never been this busy at the end of any October,” Hinkel said.
Buses help connect people across the shelter network.
“Going into this storm we stood into our storm weather plan, which involved opening up two extra shelters on Saturday, Sunday and Monday night at the coliseum, and the Best Western on Quebec Street,” Derek Woodbury with the Denver Department of Housing Stability said.
With the opening of the extra shelters, there are 400 extra beds. Saturday night, 312 beds were used.
“The first storm of the season is always one of the hardest,” Cathy Alderman from the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless said.
That’s why her team started handing out resources for people bracing against the cold.
“Our outreach will bring out resources like socks, hats and hand warmers to make sure people can survive if they are staying outside,” she said.
The emergency shelters will also be open Monday night.
Organizers say you can help by donating resources like winter clothes, gloves, hand warmers or your time to any local shelter.