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52 photos that helped us tell Colorado’s stories in 2019

Some of our favorite images of the year

Jesus Olivas, who works at Spanish Clinic at 4200 Morrison Road, waits for a take-out order at Khalo’s restaurant a few blocks away from the office in the Westwood neighborhood of Denver. January, 16, 2019. (Jeremy Sparig, Special to The Colorado Sun)
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The Sun’s network of writers and photographers spent 2019 in as many parts of Colorado as we could, where they captured the faces and places that helped us tell the story of Colorado.

Presented here, in no particular order (though you’ll sense some themes as you scroll) are some of our favorite images of the year.

FOR MORE: Click each image to jump to the accompanying story.

SHARING: Want to share a particular image with friends? Copy the # link above the photo to send people directly to the image.

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Honor Guard Commander Morey Smith, right, leads Chris Nielsen’s wife, Beverly, to the service at the cemetery. Members of the All Veterans Honor Guard recognize one of their own, Chris “Saint” Nielsen Jr. at Ft. Logan National Cemetery on Nov. 6, 2019 in Denver. Nielsen served as chaplain for the honor guard for 15 years, and is surrounded by his fellow members, family, and friends at his funeral and burial. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Gymnast Jessica Womble reaches for the high bar during her uneven bar routine at Synergy Gymnastics in Rifle on April 19, 2019. Jessica, who lost her leg in a car wreck one year ago, was competing on the bars and in floor exercise for her Rising Star Youth Training Center team from Craig. (William Woody, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Mauro Poletti walks across the highline he helped rig between two landmark crags above Minturn. (Zach Mahone, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Ben Donnelly regains his footing on the highline he and friends rigged between two landmark crags above Minturn. (Zach Mahone, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Telluride Ski Patrollers Jim Greene and Eric Auraf ire charges from Avalauncher Gun 3 toward Palmyra Peak. The patrollers responsible for avalanche mitigation are required to have explosives handling certification. (Brett Schreckengost, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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A Telluride Ski Patroller on avalanche mitigation duty. (Brett Schreckengost, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Skiers led by avalanche educator Abe Pacharz skin toward Mosquito Peak above the North London Mill where Jeff Crane, blue jacket, and his partner Kate McCoy are developing a backcountry ski base. (Zach Mahone, Special to The Colorado Sun) story publishing soon!

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Wildlife manager Cody Wigner with Colorado Parks and Wildlife clears a space to slide a tranquilized orphan bear cub into a den of sticks, straw and snow on the north slope of Pikes Peak. (Mark Reis, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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A yearling boreal toad gets a shower after being found in an alpine wetland above Buena Vista. Biologists are racing to save boreal toads from a fungus that is killing off amphibians across the world. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Two student researchers were sent with chainsaws to a debris field above Silverton to collect tree-ring specimens for dendrochronologists looking for data about the avalanche cycle in Colorado. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Harriett Noyes sits in her living room at the Phillips Mobile Home Park near Aspen on Aug. 28, 2019. Noyes, who owned the 76-acre park, had a chance to sell it to a developer for $30 million but decided she didn’t want her family and friends to be evicted. She instead sold it to Pitkin County for $6.5 million with the promise of upgrades and to keep the community affordable. (AP Photo/Thomas Peipert)

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Jeffrey Marshall performs during an open mic at Syntax Physic Opera on May 7, 2019 in Denver. Marshall was born premature with no arms and legs too short to be useful, yet he is an accomplished musician who plays guitar with his feet. (Seth McConnell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Couples dance as 25 South performs during the Colorado Gay Rodeo Association barn dance at Jefferson County Fairgrounds on July 5, 2019 in Golden. The Colorado Gay Rodeo Association presented its 37th annual Rocky Mountain Regional Rodeo this summer. (Seth McConnell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Breana Knight is tossed from the back of her steer during the steer riding event during the Colorado Gay Rodeo Association’s Rocky Mountain Regional Rodeo at Jefferson County Fairgrounds on July 6, 2019 in Golden. (Seth McConnell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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A harvest crew with Tuxedo Corn Company removes the first ears of the company’s Olathe Sweet Sweet Corn harvest from a field west of Pea Green on July 24, 2019. (William Woody, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Hazel Hemphill, 6, leads her calf Apple into the ring during the bucket calf event at the Bent County Fair on July 25, 2019 in Las Animas. Hazel is from McClave. (Mike Sweeney, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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After cows give birth the calves are tagged within the first few days of life. Since the ranch is certified organic George Whitten and Julie Sullivan must keep records of each animal from birth to death, they must be accounted for everyday throughout their existence. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Young kids eat snacks while watching a movie from the back of a SUV at the Star Drive-In movie theater in Montrose on May 20, 2019. (William Woody, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Portrait of Youth Pastor Linette Ballew, of the New Horizons Church in Dacono on Nov. 22, 2019. The small community north of Denver was devastated by the suicide of 13-year-old Von Mercado who took a Snapchat video of the act. The video was shared prompting a Colorado law making it against the law to share a video of a minor attempting suicide. The pastor helped counsel numerous young persons affected by the suicide. “We all want this to stop,” said Ballew. (Chris Schneider, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Colorado Parks and Wildlife hatchery technician Billy Krall watches as cutthroats are poured from a net on July 1, 2019, before being carried to Cottonwood Creek in the mountains southwest of Westcliffe. (Mark Reis, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Colorado Parks and Wildlife district wildlife manager Justin Krall leads a mule bearing panniers of cutthroats across Hiltman Creek on July 1, 2019, in the mountains southwest of Westcliffe. About 4,500 rare Hayden Creek cutthroats were stocked into nearby Cottonwood Creek by volunteers and state and federal workers who carried the trout in backpacks and on mules to stock a 5-mile section of Cottonwood Creek. (Mark Reis, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Pack burro racer Bob Sweeney motivates Yukon, a 10-year-old burro, as they enter Frederick’s Centennial Park during the Western Pack Burro Racing Ass-ociation’s final 2019 race on Sept. 21, 2019. Sweeney, a Leadville/Louisville resident who would go on to win his first race with Yukon minutes later, joked that before this race, he had called the burro Yukon Silver, after all the second-place finishes they had, but was considering a name change after their victory. (Andy Colwell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Abby Stewart practices her mountain biking skills at the Lunch Loops recreation area near Grand Junction on Sept. 18, 2019. The Department on Interior recently changed regulations to allow electric bikes to be ridden in areas managed by the Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service. Stewart is concerned that opening public lands to E-bikes will attract less skilled riders who may become a safety concern. (Barton Glasser, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Paige Keener, of Denver, prepares to climb one of the color-coded routes at Movement Climbing + Fitness in Denver’s River North neighborhood on Dec. 3, 2019. (Eric Lubbers, The Colorado Sun)

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The Cow Creek Fire burns in the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forest southeast of Ridgway on Oct. 18, 2019. (William Woody, Special to the Colorado Sun)

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The setting sun sets a field of mule’s ear flowers ablaze along Trail 810 in the Almont Triangle near Almont. At lower elevations flower watching is in its prime. (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Aspen-area leaves. (Shawn Rosvald, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Runners in the Team Prep distance running camp take a post plunge in the icy waters of Coal Creek as it flows through Totem Park in Crested Butte. The icing, sitting waist deep for 15 minutes, is a twice-a-day ritual for members of Team Prep. (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Kate Saldana, center, poses for a photo with friends Elise Miles and Korie Pries during prom night at Rocky Mountain Village Easterseals Camp near Empire. Prom is the highlight of a weeklong camp for teenagers with disabilities. (Jennifer Brown, The Colorado Sun)

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Kalvin Newbanks and Alaric Lower read books in their preschool classroom at Shawsheen Elementary in Greeley on Dec. 12, 2019. (Valerie Mosley, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Liam Price, 16, washes dishes in the kitchen of Donita’s Cantina as owner Kay Peterson Cook works in the background on Aug. 10, 2019. After 30 years in the historic Elk Mountain House building in Crested Butte, Cook is closing Donita’s in September. The lease went up 50% Cook said and that — along with a shortage of labor — is causing her to close. Already short-handed, Cook closes Donita’s twice a week to save money. (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Dave Richardson adjusts the hand on a mannequin as he works on the finishing details of a sculpt in the sculpting studio at Fusion Specialties on Dec. 11, 2019 in Lafayette. Fusion, the world’s largest mannequin maker, has been creating mannequins in special sizes to better reflect all body sizes and abilities. (Seth McConnell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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The Mile High Blaze team prepares for their game in St. Louis under the lights in Montbello. The Mile High Blaze, a full contact semi-pro women’s football team was established in 2013. (John Leyba, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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The Mile High Blaze team prepares for their game in St. Louis under the lights in Montbello. The Mile High Blaze, a full contact semi-pro women’s football team, is made up of women who are 18 years and older. (John Leyba, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Orchardman Brant Harrison of Kokopelli Farms stacks boxes of fresh peaches in the produce cooler at Kokopelli Farm Market located off Interstate 70 north of Palisade. (William Woody, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Alvaro Rubio harvests grapes before a hard freeze near Palisade on Oct. 10, 2019. (Barton Glasser, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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With a bountiful harvest– two buckets full of kale — Susan Wyman, owner of Gunnison Gardens, exits one of the green houses on her on her 6-acre organic farm in Gunnison. Wyman calls herself an Earth scientist and eco-farmer and teaches a course at nearby Western Colorado University about growing food in a cold climate. At almost 8,000 feet in elevation, a short growing season and extremes in temperature the Gunnison Valley is a challenging place to grow crops. “We better learn to grow food in the climate we have,” Wyman said. “Gunnison has 60 frost-free growing days, maybe closer to 50. You get what you get. You have to work with what you have.” (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Workers at Shi Farms, near Pueblo, use an old tractor to move hemp plants from the greenhouse of over 2,000 plants. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Kiana Garcia made it over the log jump after trying it with The Cycle Effect spotters/coaches Brett Donelson and Vicki Flynn. Flynn is the Eagle Valley nonprofit’s development director and Donelson is its founder. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Rafters paddle through rapids on the Arkansas River in Big Horn Sheep Canyon near Cotopaxi on June 12, 2019. Flows in the canyon that day were reported at 4,240 cubic feet per second. (Mike Sweeney, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Chris Wiegand of Adaptive Adventures steers his team’s boat during Dragon Boat practice at Sloan’s Lake on July 16, 2019 in Denver. This year’s Dragon Boat races will feature three teams made up of persons with various disabilities. (Seth McConnell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Pro cyclist Heather Fischer trains near Boulder for the Colorado Classic, which runs for four days starting Aug. 22. The race is the only women’s standalone professional road race in the Western Hemisphere. The stage race starts in Steamboat Springs and moves on to Avon, Golden and Denver. (John Leyba, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Governor-elect Jared Polis descends the west steps of the state Capitol on Jan. 8, 2019, during his inauguration ceremony. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Colorado state Rep. Lisa Cutter, who is sponsoring mental health parity legislation this year, listens with fellow colleagues to the State of the State address in the House chambers Jan. 10, 2019. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Democratic voters listen to candidates running for U.S. Senate at a forum held at Centennial Middle School in Montrose on Oct. 20, 2019. (William Woody, Special to the Colorado Sun)

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Jesus Olivas waits for a take-out order at Khalo’s restaurant, 3735 Morrison Road, in the Westwood neighborhood of Denver on Jan., 16, 2019. (Jeremy Sparig, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Yvonne Eyk, left, who will play one of two Dorothys in a production of “Wizard of Oz” for people with aphasia, joins the clinicians and her fellow actors as they run through a variety of warm-up exercises. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Activist and speaker Regan Byrd leads an anti-racism training event held at Pine Street Church in Boulder on Oct. 19, 2019. The training, titled “Embracing Anti-Racism”, seeks to educate participants in ways to actively combat racism. (Mary Alice Truitt, Special to the Colorado Sun)

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A worker in the final stages of assembling modular homes at The Farm, a development in Buena Vista priced to give more residents a chance at home ownership. Modular housing offers one solution to an affordable housing shortage, especially in rural and mountain areas. (Nina Riggio, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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The Blanca Forestry Products sawmill employs about 80 full-time workers, making it one of the largest private employers in the San Luis Valley. (John McEvoy, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Racers of all ages and costumes take off from the start of on of the Alley Loop Nordic races on Elk Avenue in Crested Butte on Feb. 2, 2019. The Alley Loop is a serious American Birkebeiner Qualifying race but it has a less serious side. In Crested Butte any event is an excuse for a costume and party. (Dean Krakel, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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Erin Triplett, right, hugs her daughter, who is an eighth grader at STEM Highlands Ranch School after the girl was escorted from the school after two students allegedly shot at least eight other kids there on May 7, 2019, in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. (John Leyba, Special to The Colorado Sun)

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