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Catch more than 51 Colorado bands at this year's Spread the Word Music Festival. —Image courtesy of Derek Miles.

What to Do in Denver and Beyond: April 27 to May 3

From a crafty market brimming with nearly 100 local vendors to free Shakespeare performances, here are five can't-miss events in the metro area this week.

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Design in Bloom, April 28

“Green architecture” takes on a whole new meaning at this springtime design event, featuring architects and designers from 14 of Denver’s most groundbreaking firms. As spectators treat themselves to cocktails, flower-themed small bites, and craft beer from Renegade Brewing, the creative teams get the chance to exhibit their most extraordinary floral-based creations. From 3-D printed containers to multi-media experiences incorporating sound, this year’s creations are coming up roses. Thu 6-9 p.m. Space Gallery, 765 Santa Fe Dr., 702-904-1088. Free.

Shakespeare After-Fest, April 29

At this Shakespearean tribute, celebrate the famed wordsmith the way he was meant to be enjoyed—in an open-air theater. Spectators can kick off the evening with a string quartet performance featuring Tom Hagerman of DeVotchka, and live on-site canvas painting of Shakespearean-inspired art. Meanwhile, DCPA’s Shakespeare in the Parking Lot will perform scenes from Romeo and Juliet, while other Denver arts groups like Cult Following, the Catamounts, Stories on Stage, Black Actors’ Guild, and PHAMALY stage their own tributes. Fri 4-7 p.m. Garner Galleria Theatre, 1101 13th St., 720-865-4545. Free.

Spread the Word Music Festival, April 29

Support Colorado’s best up-and-coming artists at this triple-venue, 51-band, multi-genre musical extravaganza. Quixote’s True Blue hosts bands such as fusion group the Jive Tribe on Friday and Saturday, and Owsley’s Golden Road and Sancho’s Boulder Arrow split hosting duties on Sunday, when you can expect to see funk outfit Technicolor Tone Factory and bluegrass-Americana hybrid band Caribou Mountain Collective. Stay refreshed with beer by Oskar Blues Brewery and try your luck entering snowboard giveaways by Never Summer—although the sweetest part will be telling your friends you saw Rastasaurus before the Denver-based reggae group got famous. Fri 6 p.m.-midnight. Locations vary. Ticket prices vary.

Avid4 Adventure Family SUP Day, April 30

You may have surfed waves or kayaked through rapids with your kids; now, you can combine the two (on flat water) by learning how to stand-up paddle board. Dive into this family-focused adventure summer camp for parents and kids (ages 5 and up) and learn the techniques of this hybrid sport. Personal flotation devices will be provided, but make sure you bring quick-dry clothing, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Can’t make it this weekend? Check out the other free family sessions on May 7 and May 21 at Chatfield State Park. Sat 9-11 a.m., 1-3 p.m. Union Reservoir, 461 County Road 26, Longmont, 1-800-977-9873. Free.

HAHO Market, April 30

Ditch the shopping cart and the big box store this weekend: The artisans at this diverse market have (nearly) everything you’d find at Wal-Mart, with unbeatable made-in-Denver quality. Pick from 90 bespoke vendors and hobbyists, including Baba & Pop’s Homemade Pierogi, Lux and Luca Jewelry Co, True and Simple Wood Stuff. Local musicians Sara Emmitt and Veronica Susan Beer perform folks tunes throughout the day while you shop confidently—knowing that every dollar goes right back into the local economy. Sat 10 a.m.-5 p.m. National Western Complex, 4655 Humboldt St., 303-297-1166. Free.

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