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A hiker enjoys the autumn leaves along the new multi-use trail segment in Clear Creek Canyon. Courtesy of Lon Abbott and Terri Cook

10 Free Things to Do in November

From a Day of the Dead celebration to complimentary admission to the Denver Zoo, here are 10 fun ways to give your wallet a break this month. 

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1. Cider Monday | Nov. 28

Why: On Cyber Monday (get the play on words there?) pop into the Tattered Cover’s Colfax Avenue, LoDo, or Aspen Grove locations for a gratis cup of hot apple cider.

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2. First Friday Nutcracker Event at Colorado Ballet | Nov. 4

Why: Here’s you chance to see a short performance from the Nutcracker for free. Shows start every 20 minutes between 6:30 and 8 p.m.

3. Free Night at the Museums | Nov. 5

Why: Thanks to Denver Arts Week, a slew of Denver’s museums are opening their doors for one night without an entrance fee. There are plenty of locations to choose from, but our pick is the Black American West Museum.

4. Screening of Off the Menu: Asian America at University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus | Nov. 16

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Why: Don’t miss the 2 p.m. screening of this compelling documentary about cultures, food, family, and traditions.

5. Peaks to Plains Trail | Your choice

Why: Even if it finally cools down and fall starts to actually feel like fall around here, this JeffCo hike is an ideal way to stretch your legs any time of year.

6. The Fantastic World of Harry Potter | Nov. 17

Why: If the Harry Potter fan in your life can’t wait until the November 18 release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, take them—in costume, of course—to this celebration of all things Potter at the Ross-Broadway branch of the Denver Public Library.

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7. Take the “Food: Too Good to Waste” Challenge | Your choice

Why: In this month’s cover story, assistant food editor Callie Sumlin breaks down Denver’s efforts to address food waste, including taking the EPA’s free challenge to see how much food she was throwing away (spoiler: she cut her household’s average food waste in half by the end of the experiment).

8. The Curious Road: Life of a Bike Exhibit | Nov. 4

Why: An homage to all things two-wheels, this 5:30 to 10 p.m. exhibit features works by students in the Arts Street youth art program.

9. Denver Zoo | Nov. 4, Nov. 7 & Nov. 17

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Why: There are three chances to visit the zoo this month sans entrance fee, meaning that you’ll have plenty of time to make it to all of the exhibits (parents of young ones take note and start your tour in the opposite direction on the second visit), including checking out all the powerful “Washed Ashore” art pieces.

10. Day of the Dead Family Celebration | Nov. 5

Why: Learn about this Mexican holiday that honors loved ones that have passed away while the kiddos sample Mexican hot chocolate and learn to decorate sugar skulls.

Looking for more things to do in Denver? Check out our events calendar.

Natasha Gardner, Articles Editor

Natasha Gardner writes and edits longform journalism and multimedia projects for 5280 and is a regular columnist for 5280.com.

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