EDITOR'S NOTE: CNN has sent dozens of reporters, producers, contributors and correspondents to the key battleground states to cover the final days of the 2012 election. Here, CNN Correspondent Kyung Lah lists 14 things you may not have known about the state of Colorado, the battleground state she is covering this week.
1) Brewer turned politician
Before becoming Denver’s Mayor and then Colorado’s Governor, Democrat John Hickenlooper made his fortune by creating the Wynkoop Brewing Co. in Lower Downtown Denver, a popular area usually called “LoDo”
2) Full ballot
There are 16 Presidential candidates on the Colorado ballot, including candidates from the “Peace and Freedom,” “Justice,” “Objectivist,” “American Constitution” and “Socialist Workers” parties.
3) ‘Beautiful’ Colorado
Katherine Lee Bates wrote “America the Beautiful” after being inspired by the view from Pikes Peak.
4) Federal property
The U.S. federal government owns 36.6% of the land in Colorado.
5) Mile High. Really
The 13th step of the state capital building in Denver is exactly 1 mile high above sea level.
6) Olympics? No Thanks
Colorado is the only state in history to turn down the Olympics. In 1976 the Winter Olympics were planned to be held in Denver. At the last minute, 62% of all voters in the state choose not to host the Olympics, because of the cost, pollution and population boom it would have on the state and the city of Denver. Former Gov. Dick Lamm, a state legislator at the time, led the charge to turn back the Games, and he rode that anti-Olympic campaign into the governor’s mansion. Now co-director of the Institute for Public Policy Studies at the University of Denver, Lamm adamantly defends turning down the Olympics nearly 40 years ago.
7) A city of honor
Pueblo is the only city in America with four living recipients of the Medal of Honor.
8) Early voters
As much as 85% of this year’s votes from Colorado will be in by Election Day.
9) Independent minds
More than one third of all Colorado voters are registered Independent voters.
10) John Denver and meteors
11) Nearly everyone votes
In 2008, 2,401,462 votes were cast in the presidential race, a turnout of 91.68%.
12) Always a winner
There are 42 different scenarios of how you add up the electoral votes to reach the magic number of 270 – the total needed to elect a president - and Colorado is in all 42 of those scenarios.
13) Getting women’s attention
Combined, Obama and Romney and the Super Pacs have spent nearly $5 billion to win your vote. It is estimated that each campaign spent around $42 to get the vote of a woman living in the Colorado Suburbs.
14) The beer state
Colorado is home to over 160 established craft brewers located across the state. The economic impact of the entire Colorado beer industry on the state economy is an estimated $18.5 billion.