The Story Of The Woodlands Barn
The white Woodlands barn is located on a 52 acre property 15 minutes up the hill from Red Rocks and just outside of Conifer, 30 minutes from downtown Denver. No really. 30 minutes. Not 15 to the outskirts and closest Denver address, 30 minutes to the heart of downtown….we aren't here to fool you.
Moving right along.
We decided we wanted to make a change in our lives in early 2016 when Owen was on the way. Stephen was traveling so much for work, it wasn’t the life we wanted to continue for ourselves after he arrived. We decided we wanted to build a wedding venue to pursue our true passion of fixing, building things, gardening, and working together. We purchased this property in early 2017 when Owen was only a few months old, moving from just across town in Parker. We were looking for a property for the venue that was within 30 minutes of downtown, with mountain views, on at least 35 acres to allow for 2 wells, an existing home, and was not located in a neighborhood. We searched and searched for this magical property almost my entire pregnancy with Owen (up until literally the day before he was born we were on a tour out past Golden) and gave up for about 2 months after he arrived in November 2016. In January 2017 this property caught our eye. It had a lot of the items we needed since it used to be home to an old RV campground and archery range. There is a left hand turn lane into the property from 285 South, it had a commercial street light, a second well that used to service the campground, and a house…….well if you want to call it that, and was on 52 acres. The first time we came here we were shocked, there was old junk, trash, 2 trailers that held an old bathhouse for the campground, RV hookups, and old wires everywhere and the house…..oh man. It was really hard for us to even step foot in it. It was so dark and old and gross and smelled weird, and it didn't have insolation-this is Colorado how in the world? So we left, with our 2 month old baby saying there is no way, let keep looking. We thought could never clean this place up enough to make it work. About 3 weeks went by and we made another appointment to look at it again. It was a beautiful sunny day after a recent snow storm. The snow was that shiny light Colorado glitter snow with the blue bird sky and we finally saw this place for what it could be. It had beautiful views and just needed someone to buy it and take care of it again, a lot of TLC.
We wrote the family that owned the property a letter that we planned to build a venue and clean up the property in hopes to restore it’s beauty and share it with others for years to come. We didn’t plan to build homes or develop it further, or sell any piece of it. We didn’t have a team of investors or were not part of a real estate group-which someone on Next Door claimed to proudly know about us. We were just Janelle and Stephen and Owen- a PT, an engineer, and a little boy. That's it. The family loved that we didn’t have plans to cut down all the trees and sell to make a profit. They took our offer and so it begins. We gutted the house and made it a cute place to be. Planted some shrubs, painted, ad started on all the trash, which was every where. Then we started on our rezoning for the venue.
The Stage Stop campground was never actually zoned to be a business, so we had to work with our county to zone the property to allow for a commercial business. The first stop on this rezoning journey was a community meeting where people came out and yelled at us, and Janelle cried…a lot. But we pressed on and went through the entire process which took us about a year to complete before we were able to build anything. We began building in September of 2018 and the building was complete in late April 2019, 3 months later then originally projected. We had our first wedding and opened our doors on May 4th, 2019.
There is a still a lot of cleaning up and restoring of this property which will probably take us our life time, but we are so excited about the future of this place. We plan to continues to remove the trash and 1 remaining trailer on the property to allow for