Holiday Gift Guide: Colorado Employee-Owned Businesses

You know what time of year it is! It’s getting a little colder and darker, which means it’s time to get cozier and merrier. To help with that, we’ve compiled a list of Colorado employee-owned businesses to make your holiday shopping a little easier and your time with friends and family a little brighter.

Every employee-owned business is different, but they all strive towards common goals: to promote a higher quality of life for employees, create a more engaged workforce, and increase economic stability. Here at Namasté Solar, we are grateful to be an employee-owned cooperative and excited to highlight other businesses in our area.

Thoughtful surprises

Palmer Flowers: It’s the most wonderful time of the year for winter themed flower arrangements. Spiro Palmer, a Greek immigrant, has been working with plants and flowers since 1976. The company has locations in Fort Collins and Loveland. It serves the Front Range by creating beautiful floral arrangements as well as consistently giving back to the communities that help shape it. Watch out – it might be hard to walk away empty handed after browsing the website full of monthly flower subscriptions and seasonal bouquets!

Trident Booksellers and Café: There’s no place like a combined book and coffee shop for the holidays. Trident Booksellers opened in 1980 and a year later became Trident Booksellers and Café, the first espresso bar in Colorado. During Covid-19, it became employee-owned and continues to stand as the oldest café in Boulder. The bookstore celebrates community, compassion, and independent thinking. Shop merch, gift cards and books all online. You can also grab a mystery book pack that comes with 4-5 books hand-picked by staff for the friend that loves surprises.

Keep it moving

RMU Outdoors: Find all things skis, mountain bikes, packs, gear, and apparel for the friends and family that love exploring in a winter wonderland. This business was started by a bunch of skiers who began making skis in a garage. Now, it is an international employee-owned business that raises funds for nonprofits and implements a 50+ days on snow policy for all employees. You can find products in many online shops like Moosejaw, REI, Backcountry Essentials, and more.

Denver Yoga Co-Op: Sign someone up to get some stretching in after decking the halls. Classes are offered online or in person (at various locations) and require an online donation to the instructor of your choice to register. Just a few of the classes offered include meditation, gentle yoga, and core strengthening yoga. Denver Yoga Co-Op came together as a collective that wanted to share their unique skills and passions through the practice of yoga.

Pizza and beer: a tasty combo

Sometimes the simple gift of time together is the best gift. Let it snow while you make memories with friends and family over a pizza or beer.

Sexy Pizza: This pizza place located in Denver and Trinidad calls itself “the fuel of a revolution.” Not only does this restaurant care about making great pizza, but it also invests in the community and activism. The pizzas are always made from scratch with fresh ingredients and the commitment to community is made clear through the amazing benefits package provided for employees, the $37,000 donated to 2021 community partners (listed on the website), and their involvement in discussions around homelessness and drug policy reform. Give the gift of pizza, but check out their cool merch, too! A “sexy pizza” shirt is sure to be a conversation starter and a new wardrobe favorite.

Odell Brewing: The Fort Collins brewery that has been around for over 30 years has perfected its craft. The company is committed to making great beer, helping people, promoting equity, and preserving the environment. This a great spot for both wine and beer lovers because the OBC Wine Project was launched in summer 2021. Give the gift of merch, a drink delivery subscription, or quality time over a glass or pint.

Left Hand Brewing: Started in Longmont by two friends who met in the Air Force, Left Hand Brewing has been trying to make different and exciting beer for over 26 years. It’s an environmentally conscious company that has been actively giving back to the community since 1993. The many unique options like Peanut Butter Milk Stout, White Russian Nitro, and S’mores Milk Stout will keep the adventurous foodie entertained all winter. Shop gift cards, gift sets, and merch all on the website.

Do you need some more inspiration? We’ve got you covered. Check out our holiday buying guides from past years: we collected gift ideas from Colorado BIPOC businesses, gathered environmentally friendly gifts from a list of local businesses focused on going green, and curated gift ideas from Colorado B Corps dedicated to using business as a force for good.

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