John Hickenlooper Gets to Work Before He Gets His Party On

January 12 2011, 9:00 AM

Inaugurale: It's the stuff bipartisan brewmeistering governors are made of in our purple state, writes Politics Daily. And it's what many revelers drank yesterday, as Governor John Hickenlooper hosted a mid-winter barbecue to celebrate becoming Colorado's 42nd governor. He was greeted by 3,000 partiers and the music of Hazel Miller at the Fillmore Auditorium before moving along to the Ogden Theatre, where the big surprise was a performance by DeVotcKa, the local band that made it big with their soundtrack to the film Little Miss Sunshine (via 9News).

"I feel a bit like a fish out of water," Republican attorney Ellen Stewart told The Denver Post as she checked her fur coat, "but Hickenlooper is good for business and that's what's important." The scene featured a veritable who's who in Colorado politics, including former governors John Vanderhoof, Roy Romer, Dick Lamm, Bill Owens, and Bill Ritter. If you missed out on all the bonhomie, Westword has pics.

Earlier in the day, Hickenlooper signed four executive orders, including two aimed at promoting jobs and economic development across the state (via the Denver Business Journal). Both were themes in Hickenlooper's inaugural address: "Colorado must be a place where we are known, not only for the beauty of our landscapes and wonders of nature," Hick said, "but also for the advance of new technologies and new ways of powering the economy." So far, his actions are receiving a lot of praise, even from the conservative El Paso County commissioners, reports the Colorado Springs Gazette.

But Hick and Lieutenant Governor Joe Garcia weren't the only new officials to take an oath yesterday. At the Capitol, the GOP's top state officeholders were sworn in (via the Post), while across Civic Center Park, Bill Vidal took over as Denver's mayor (also via the Post). And in Larimer County, Justin Smith took the sheriff's reins from the high-profile and often controversial Jim Alderden, notes the Loveland Reporter-Herald.