There’s nothing quite like discovering hidden treasures when you’re visiting a new vacation spot. Just last year I found a coffee shop which named all of its featured drinks after books — a writer’s dream!
If you’re traveling to the Rocky Mountains any time soon, you might want to plan a stop at the Baldpate Inn. Does the name ring a bell? Or perhaps in this case, turn a key?
“Seven Keys to Baldpate” was a mystery novel published in 1913, a story that found its way to the silver screen seven different times.
The main character, an author, attempted the daunting task of writing a novel inside twenty-four hours’ time.
Take it from this writer — such a feat would be both incredibly challenging, and maybe even downright crazy.
But the Baldpate Inn is no work of fiction anymore. Travelers can find the hotel named after the novel’s featured setting near Estes Park, Colorado.
But what is most intriguing about the inn is its collection of keys. And yes, there are far more than seven.
The owner of the Baldpate Inn, Lois Smith, just has one request for those who wish to see the massive, 30,000 key collection.
“We tell people your first visit to the key room is free, but after that, you need to bring us a key.”
No wonder her collection keeps growing. Now the hotel is celebrating its 100th anniversary, the perfect chance for new contributors to pay a visit.
Traditionally, or so says the legend, the original owners of the inn “gave a key to each guest that came, so each guest had the only key to Baldpate,” Smith shared.
However, now that the tourist attraction has become so popular, giving out keys to everyone just won’t do.
People leave keys from all walks of life. The room has become quite the scrapbook, memories left behind from each unique visitor who comes to call.
If you have any old keys lying around in a drawer or shoebox, they may seem like junk.
But drop them by the Baldpate Inn and your trash will become a treasure displayed for all to see.
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