Lake Granby: Couple opens Circle H to weddings, events
December 25, 2008
When April (Thomas-Lang) and Ken Hilton first bought the Circle H Corral on Lake Granby and Highway 34 last January, a friend wrote this: “In 2008, the H came full circle.”
Last Sunday, Dec. 21, the couple further sealed the circle by marrying one another in the lodge great room that captures a commanding view of the lake. Twenty immediate family members witnessed the event.
“Circle H is the coolest place. What a location,” April said Wednesday about the place that has come to be her home, studio, lodging business and now, place of wedding memories. “As soon as you walk in the front door, it just awes you.”
For Ken, owning the property means returning home. He spent part of his formative years at Circle H when his parents owned it from 1973 to 1976.
Circle H dates back to a pre-Lake Granby era. The lodge burned down in the late 1940s, according to April, and was rebuilt in 1954. Each owner since kept the original name.
Ken and April, who reunited during planning stages for a Middle Park High School class reunion four years ago, hope to host more intimate weddings and private parties at the lodge.
They are expanding Circle H’s offerings with a newly-garnered tavern liquor license from the county, pending from the state.
They are reopening the bar area that once accommodated Circle H’s former restaurant. The main reason, they said, is to attract more catered special events to the establishment.
The lounge will also be open daily, but “it likely will not be a late-night bar,” April said.
“We’re trying to keep it more of an intimate, cozy place for people to have a drink or two and relax.”
The Circle H incorporates April’s glass-blowing studio.
The artist displays several of her hand-created vessels at the site.
“People are welcome to stop by and come watch glass blowing,” she said.
And as a couple, they are blowing new life into a mainstay Grand County lodge that sat empty for roughly four years.
Six upstairs lake-view rooms are available again for nightly rental.
Reflecting on the events that made 2008 a memorable year, “all the dreams have come,” April said.
” Tonya Bina can be reached at 887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.