Laramie, Wyoming is a fun little college town that is often accused of being boring, cold, and windy. While the cold and the wind may be a factor here, this town has shown to be very unique in my time here so far and proves to be rather upbeat, contrary to popular belief. With every small town comes a series of quirks and traditions, thus creating the tell tale signs of being in Laramie.
1. You hear the term "Greenie."
My reoccurring thoughts after a few days of living in Laramie: What the frick-frack-snickety-snack is a "Greenie" and why is everyone so pissed off at them? As a (mostly) native Coloradan, I had never heard this term before. As it turns out, Coloradans have a similar reputation in Wyoming as Texans or Californians have in Colorado. Coloradans are aggressive drivers in the eyes of Laramie natives. The hostility towards the bordering state's drivers runs deep in Laramie (and the rest of the Wyoming for that matter), and so the term, "Greenie" was assigned in reference to the green Colorado license plate. "Get out of our state, you Greenie," is a common phrase in times of road rage. However, I've still met plenty of friendly people here so far who accept me despite my origin.
2. You see Skateboarder Guy.
What is his name? Why is he here? Is he even a student? The mysterious man widely referred to as "Skateboarder Guy" is a common sight around Laramie, particularly on the sidewalks of uwyo's campus. His parachute pants and persistent skateboarding stunts are famous around this small town. I first heard about him from a speaker at a freshman class meeting, and I've encountered him everyday since. He seems to have been here for as long as anyone can remember. Who is this mysterious legend? Nobody knows. Note: Call him "Skateboarder Guy" if you want to boost his ego. He likes the attention.
Shoutout to Skateboarder Guy!
3. Walgreens is quite literally and exclusively a pharmacy.
Call me a dork, but Walgreens was the Sugar-Honey-Ice-Tea back in Golden, Colorado. Peers have periodically made fun of my delight in purchasing everything from school supplies, cosmetics, t-shirts, and pictures from this little drugstore. I was shocked when I drove up to the Walgreens in Laramie in search of a few spiral notebooks and saw that a drive-thru pharmacy was all that stood. Guess I'll have to start shopping like a normal person now...
4. People are riding in the backs of pickup trucks on Main Street.
I love how laid back this town is. On more than one occasion I've seen guys riding in the beds of their pickup trucks, waving at cops, on Main Street. And get this: the cops smile and wave back. Gotta love a small town.
5. You hear about "Atmosphere."
Atmosphere is a clothing/outdoor gear shop in Laramie where dogs are welcome (like seriously, so many dogs.) The owner invites shoppers in for eggnog and "fun eggnog" during the holidays. Occasionally, he'll serve chili to his customers as well. Basically, the store and owner encompass everything I love about living in a small town.
Side note: Laramie's "NU2U" is also fantastic if you're like me and think thrift shops are the bomb.
I'm so looking forward to discovering more quirks and secret corners of this town! Share your thoughts and personal experiences in Laramie in the comments below.