Now that the weather is getting warmer and the famous Colorado sun is shining bright, there is one thing on many a Boulderite’s mind: being outside as much as possible. One of my favorite outdoor “activities” is barbecue and grilling up some grub.
If I were to paint a portrait of me in summer, it would be of me holding tongs in one hand, a beer in the other while standing in front of a grill waiting impatiently for a steak to cook to a perfect medium rare. Next to me, my faithful dog, Zed, would be staring at the grill, desperately wishing the meat to slip through my tongs, onto the ground and into his mouth.
But before you break out the barby this summer, Boulder has some fairly strict grilling and burning regulations that you need to follow in order to avoid being fined.
If you live in an apartment with a balcony or patio or have your grill located on your deck (where most grills go), here are some of the things that you’ll need to know:
- If your patio or balcony is made of combustible material (read: wood), only small (2.5 lb./16.4 oz.) propane bottle sizes are allowed in propane grills.
- Balconies or decks made from concrete or steel may have larger propane tanks provided they can be placed more than 10 feet away from combustible material.
- Be sure to check with your apartment complex before you go make the purchase because some places simply won’t allow grills due to their insurance not covering it.
- Charcoal grills follow the same regulations.
If you find that your place doesn’t meet these expectations, but you are desperate to grill this summer, you can always purchase an electric grill. Those suckers are the barbecue version of Beyoncé: they go where they want, when they want.
For those of you who have fire pits in your backyard, I have some bad news for you: no open burning is allowed within Boulder city limits. This is true for most metro Denver cities, so don’t feel like you’ve been singled out. The fine for open burning is pretty steep, so you may want to keep all the fire contained within a grill.
And know, to you poor souls who want nothing more than a grill in their lives after reading about barbecue, there’s no need to worry, simply move your party to one of Boulder’s exceptional shelters in a park. There you’ll have ample seating and at least one, sometimes more, grill.
On your mark, get set, GRILL!