Obama has pizza and pool night in Denver

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Obama has pizza and pool night in Denver
US President Barack Obama boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base October 1, 2014 in Maryland. Obama is heading to Chicago where he will attend a campaign event for Gov. Pat Quinn, D-Il, and deliver remarks on the economy at Northwestern University. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base October 1, 2014 in Maryland. Obama is heading to Chicago where he will attend a campaign event for Gov. Pat Quinn, D-Il, and deliver remarks on the economy at Northwestern University. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama arrives at Gary Chicago International Airport October 1, 2014 in Gary, Indiana. Obama will attend a campaign event for Gov. Pat Quinn, D-Il, and deliver remarks on the economy at Northwestern University. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
President Barack Obama waves from the steps of Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014. Obama is traveling to Chicago but is flying into Gary-Chicago International airport, rather than the usual O’Hare International Airport. On Thursday, Obama will attend a campaign event with Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and then give a speech about the economy at Northwestern University in Evanston. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
President Barack Obama salutes as he walks off of Marine on at Andrews Air Force Base in Md., Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014. Obama is traveling to Chicago but is flying into Gary-Chicago International airport, rather than the usual O’Hare International Airport. On Thursday, Obama will attend a campaign event with Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and then give a speech about the economy at Northwestern University in Evanston. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
US President Barack Obama (R) jokingly reacts as he shakes hands with a man wearing a horse head mask on a street in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (R) shakes hands with a bystander wearing a horse head mask on street in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama winks at the press as he prepares to depart the White House in Washington, DC, October 1, 2014. Obama is heading to Chicago where he will attend a campaign event for Gov. Pat Quinn, D-Il, and deliver remarks on the economy at Northwestern University. AFP PHOTO / Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama with Congressman Ed Perlmutter arrive in Colorado at Denver International Airport, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama plays pool with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama fist bumps with a statue of a gorilla at a pub in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama hugs Kalynne May Arrick from Tyler, Texas, after learning that her older brother Marine Sgt. Kenneth May had been killed in Afghanistan in 2010, at a pub in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama visits with people along 15th Street in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama visits with people along 15th Street in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama talks with a young boy in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (R) talks with a man as he arrives in a restaurant to dine with a group of people, who wrote letters to him, in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama listens to a group of people, who wrote letters to him, as he sits to dine with them at a restaurant in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama fist bumps with a statue of a gorilla at Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama sits down for dinner, with five individuals who have written to him about the issues that matter most to them and shared stories, at Wazee Supper Club in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama walks to his car upon at the Denver International Airport on July 8, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (C) sits to dine with a group of people, who wrote letters to him, at a restaurant in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (C) speaks with a group of people, who wrote letters to him, as they sit to dine at a restaurant in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama arrives in Colorado at Denver International Airport, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 08: President Barack Obama visits with people along 15th Street in downtown Denver after arriving in Colorado, July 08, 2014. President Obama is in Colorado to speak about the economy and raise money for Senator Mark Udall's re-election campaign. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama gives a challenge coin to Kalynne May Arrick from Tyler, Texas, after learing that her older brother Marine Sgt. Kenneth May had been killed in Afghanistan in 2010, at a pub in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (L) and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper (R) sip their beers at a pub in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama (C) speaks with a group of people, who wrote letters to him, as they sit to dine at a restaurant in Denver, Colorado, on July 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
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By Julie Pace

DENVER (AP) -- On Tuesday, President Barack Obama's continuing quest to break free from the constraints of the White House brought him to a crowded pizza restaurant, a pool bar and face-to-face with a man wearing a horse head mask.

Shortly after arriving in Denver, Obama headed to the Wazee Supper Club for dinner with local residents who had recently written him letters. It was a carefully orchestrated event aimed at projecting an image of the president connecting with real Americans.

But after his meal, Obama decided to break from the script. He took off by foot down 15th Street, a cadre of anxious Secret Service agents by his side, and started shaking hands with the dozens of people who had gathered on the sidewalks.

There were kids eager for a picture with the president and adults who held up their hands for a high-five or fist bump. Then there was the man wearing the horse head. The reasons for his sartorial choice remained unclear.

Obama increasingly has been showing his frustration with the restrictive White House security bubble and referring to himself as a "bear on the loose." In recent weeks, he's been hitting restaurants in Washington and vowing to spend more time with the public outside of the nation's capital.

After his 10-minute stroll, Obama hopped back into his armored limousine for a short drive to his next destination, Wynkoop Brewing Co., which was founded by Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper.

The governor - a Democrat facing re-election this fall - was waiting for Obama inside. They headed to the bar where they ordered two Rail Yard Ales, then headed upstairs for a game of pool.

As Vanilla Ice's classic song "Ice Ice Baby" played in the background, Obama sank the eight-ball to claim victory over Hickenlooper. And on at least this occasion, Obama wanted to make sure the media were nearby.

He turned to the traveling press corps and said, "Did you record that?"

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