Less than an hour after we left our RV Park this morning we arrived in Boulder, CO … finally! I have been waiting for this visit since we made our first trip south our first winter. As I mentioned in a previous blog I became interest in the town after reading a series of novels written by Stephen White. His books made Boulder sound like a beautiful small town with lots of character and places to see. It was a pretty town but definitely not the small town I was expecting, but we still had a good time.
Since hubby was able to tour his favorite drink factory yesterday I thought it was only fair that I get to tour my favorite drink factory today … tea! Our first stop in Boulder was at Celestial Seasonings, which you may know better as Celestial Tea.
As you walk in and sign up for a tour you are handed a small round tea mug and your tour ticket.
We had about twenty minutes before the tour started so we spend some time sampling different teas. There were some really good ones and it is much better when you can sample them instead of buying a full box of tea you don’t like!
Our tour started with a visit to the theater where we watched a short video about how Celestial Seasonings started. The video ended with the safety rules for the tour, we all had to wear hair nets, cell phones had to stay in pockets or purses, and sadly no pictures where allowed 😦
As we entered the factory you could immediately smell the different aromas. We walked down an aisle of shelves full of sacks of different tea seasonings. We were told, “if you don’t like the smell walk a little further and you will get a new smell” and it was so true. At one point we came up to a sealed room and once the garage door was open the peppermint smell wafted out. Most people were unable to stand in the room but hubby and I really enjoyed the smell and wow did it every clean out my sinuses!
Along the way we learned something I didn’t know about tea and, since I have been drinking tea since I was a young girl, I thought I knew everything about tea J Black tea is very high in caffeine which I knew, but if a tea is labeled Caffeine Free, which most of the tea I drink is, then there are no actual tea leaves in it! Caffeine free tea is made up of different seasonings but, since most people think anything in a tea bag and steeped in hot water is tea, it is called tea.
The sleepy time tea room in the tasting room, Sleepy Time Tea is their most popular tea. I thought you might need a picture break by now 🙂
When I drink black tea I do buy decaffeinated tea bags, which I know do contain a small amount of caffeine. By law, tea labeled as decaffeinated must have less than 2.5 percent of its original caffeine level, which usually equates to less than 2 mg per cup. So now you know the difference between decaffeinated tea and caffeine free tea 🙂
I did ask how tea was decaffeinated but with all the other information I took in I just can’t remember enough of the process to repeat it … but suffice to say I now know why I have to pay so much more for my decaf black tea bags.
One of the more interesting parts of the tour was walking through the packaging plant. Here we were able to watch as Lemon Zing was packaged from the end (boxes on pallets wrapped in plastic) to near the beginning (large rolls of tea bag paper being fed into machines to make the tea bags). This was the last stop of the tour and we were left with a few more tidbits of interesting information. The plant makes ten million tea bags a day and they have stopped using string, staples, and labels on their tea bags. They say that move has saved 3.5 billion pounds of garbage from the landfill every year!
I highly recommend this tour, which of course ends in the tea shop were I’m sure you will walk out with a least one box of tea.
After our tour of Celestial Seasonings we headed down to Pearl Street Mall.
We enjoyed three hours wandering around people watching and watching buskers perform.
Admiring the scenery.
The Boulder Court House
I can’t resist a flower picture 🙂
This fellow was pretty talented! He is making a picture, on the water falling over the rock, out of leaves … it really was amazing.
Having the best pizza ever for lunch … such a light tasty crust on their pizzas.
And finally, since we still had an hour of parking left, a stop at Starbucks which meant a latte for me and fast Wi-Fi for hubby 🙂
As we headed back to Maxx the truck somehow veered in Golden, CO and we ended up making another stop but I will save that for tomorrow.
Until next time …