“RidgeGate Up Close” is our series of interviews with people who make RidgeGate a more vibrant place. Read the unexpected stories of residents, workers and local leaders who live and work here. Know someone who has a unique perspective or life in RidgeGate? Contact us at email@example.com.
A big thank you to Sarah Neumann Photography for conducting and photographing our RidgeGate Up Close interviews! This month: Josh, Anna and Cece Bird, residents of Ovation Apartment Homes in RidgeGate’s West Village. As managers with busy work schedules, Josh and Anna put a high premium on convenience and accessibility. We spoke with them about their move from small town America to RidgeGate, and why it’s been so easy to call RidgeGate “home.”
#1. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of living in RidgeGate?
Anna: “I think about access. Probably my favorite thing about RidgeGate is that it’s between Denver and Colorado Springs. We love going to the zoo with Cece, our two-year-old, and we have an annual pass…. but since we’re in between these two large cities, we can take advantage of both.”
#2. Josh, you’re a huge sports fan, and you said living in Lone Tree makes it easier to enjoy live sports?
Josh: “Right, because I can just jump on the light rail and go to a Rockies’ game. The light rail is super cool and convenient.”
#3. Who are your teams?
Josh: “I’m a big Cubs fan. And I like the Tennessee Titans for football. I’m also a huge Kansas Jayhawks fan because of my grandmother.”
#4. You two live with your daughter, Cece, on the first floor of the Ovation apartments, facing the courtyard pool. A pool view is something you’re accustomed to because of your job, right Anna?
Anna: “Right! I’m the general manager of Aqua Tots Swim School in Lone Tree. We are a year-round swim school that is all about safety first and fun second. We want kids to learn to be safe around water. Aqua Tots is a five-minute drive from RidgeGate on Park Meadows Drive in Acres Green. We’re seeing more and more families with kids move in to Lone Tree and RidgeGate, and we know water safety is a life-long skill that you learn early on. It’s something everyone needs to use, so with more families moving in, I think our school is a tremendous benefit to our community.”
#5. How did you and Josh meet?
Anna: “We were in a tiny town in Kansas and I was out with a bunch of girlfriends and Josh was out with a bunch friends. We were at the one main bar called The Rose.”
Josh: “…It was a Country-Western, line dancing kind of bar.”
Anna: “…And I was sitting with my friends and his group of friends came up. I love to dance and none of Josh’s friends like to dance, but he’s a great dancer. Actually, he’s better than I am. I was very attracted to him because he was the life of the party.”
#6. Now that you’ve moved here from Kansas, what do you enjoy about having RidgeGate as your new address?
Anna: “We actually just went to a new restaurant opening here in RidgeGate this week, and that was fun. It’s called Newk’s.”
Josh: “Yeah, it started in Mississippi. The house manager was working the crowd and coming around to talk to everyone. Anna and I are both managers, so we can get that.”
Anna: “I’m also a huge Sprouts fan. We stroller over there a lot. We also love the Lone Tree Arts Center, and we just went to Baby Yoga there. I can’t wait to go to their ‘Seedlings’ programs for kids. Oh, and Story Time at the Lone Tree Public Library! They just did a themed event around the Give a Mouse a Cookie books. They had craft supplies and Cece got to make mouse ears for free. It was awesome. Our daughter is also in speech therapy and our therapist often takes her over to the library for a change of scenery.”
#7. It sounds like you both work a ton and you don’t always have overlapping days off.
We’re both managers so that’s part of it. We’re both salaried and we work until the job is done.
Joshua: “It’s actually nice to be able to run things by each other if we have questions on anything…from staff, to customers. We can run it by each other and say, “hey, what would you do here?”
Anna: “Living in RidgeGate, it’s been nice to have really minimal work commutes compared to most people we know. I am the manager of Aqua Tots in Lone Tree, and Josh is a manager with Home Depot.”
#8. As two busy working professionals and parents, it seems like one thing that keeps coming up in our conversation is the convenience and easy access that comes with living in RidgeGate.
Anna: “Right, if you live in RidgeGate you live in Denver Metro without feeling like you live in Denver Metro. You still see families walking around, or hiking the bluffs, because people are incredibly active here. This is also a really dog-friendly area, which is great, because we have a little dachshund named Raven. The rec center is close and beautifully landscaped and it just feels like you have everything you need, right where you are.”
#9. Anna, I noticed the tattoo on your wrist. What does it mean?
Anna: “It’s the French word ‘Écouter,’ which means ‘to listen.’ My degree is in psychology and I did ABA therapy with children on the Autism spectrum. They all have ‘voices’ of different kinds. That’s probably the only tattoo of mine that shows, but I have six. I really love tattoos and piercings as a form of self-expression.”
#10. How about you Josh, do you have tats?
Joshua: “No… I have freckles.”
#11. What are your predictions for the Bird family in the coming years?
Anna: “Well, we know this is the area where we want to be. We’re not putting on a front for anyone…we do work a ton and we want to have more kids, but we don’t want to go back to small town America. We’re willing to put in the work so we can stay here. We’re rarely home, and when we are we’re always tired, but we’re hoping in the long run it pays off. We want the convenience and opportunities that come with living in a place like this.”