Answer: Personally, I'd prefer to see cattails to dry dirt--and with cattails you might even get to see some heron or other water-loving birds!
Well, I guess it's too late now. Planting grass just means lots of watering, fertilizing, and mowing. You might consider planting wildflowers. There are a number of mixes available--I'd probably go with one that contains a mix of annuals and perennials. They are usually mowed once a year, in late fall, to help spread the seed.
Wildflowers--and any other planting--will require watering at first, but once established many wildflowers adapt well to dry conditions and will require much less water than a lawn.
Your cooperative extension may also have some ideas. http://www.ext.colostate.edu/
Also, you might consider planting the area as a wildlife habitat. Visit the National Wildlife Federation's website and see if you can find something to convince your neighbors to create a more natural and life-sustaining planting! http://www.nwf.org/habitats/
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