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Purchase a box of holiday cards designed and drawn by local women who are experiencing poverty. Photo courtesy of Art Restart

Get Involved: Our Top Picks for December 12-18

Get Involved is a weekly series pointing readers toward community-oriented events, volunteer opportunities, and good causes in Colorado.

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Events to Attend

Art Restart Holiday Card Collection: Picking the perfect holiday card can be tough. But picking up a one-of-a-kind card that benefits a local nonprofit is easy. Now through December 15, Art Restart—a social enterprise created by The Gathering Place, a daytime drop-in center for some of Denver’s most marginalized communities—is selling cards that feature original artwork created by members of The Gathering Place. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the artists and the organization’s services. Through Thursday, December 15, times vary; The Gathering Place, 1535 High St.; prices vary

The Art of Cycling: Appreciate Denver’s cycling culture and the incredible talent of local artists like KiriLeigh Jones, Jason Thielke, and Tristan Minton, who designed custom bikes for this night of celebration. As the culminating event in White Rhino Customs’ r[EVOLVE] campaign, attendees can socialize, eat, drink, and be merry while supporting the custom bike creator’s mission to raise awareness about art education, bicycle accessibility, and personal wellness. Funds raised through the event’s silent auction will benefit the organization’s nonprofit partners Im’Unique, Bikes Together, and Arts-Street programming. Wednesday, December 14, 6:30–10:30 p.m.; McNichols Civic Center Building, 144 W. Colfax Ave.; $15–$20

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Ugly Sweater Party: Throw on your ugliest PJs and your best roller skates for an evening of fun. Now in its fourth year, this roller-skating jam hosted by The Rotary Club of Five Points Cultural District supports efforts to end polio, with proceeds benefiting Shots for Tots & Teens Immunization Clinic, the End Polio Now Foundation, the Heart and Hand Center, and other programs that benefit neighborhood schools and educational organizations. The 21-and-up event encourages attendees to sport their ugliest holiday garb as they skate and participate in contests and games. Skate rentals are free with online ticket purchase. Friday, December 16, 6– 9 p.m.; Exdo Events Center, 1399 35th St.; $15–$25

BarkHappy Denver HOWLiday Party: Let man’s best friend tag along to this howling holiday ball to benefit MaxFund Animal Shelter. Snap a pic with Santa courtesy of Furever Friends Pet Photography before letting your buddy sample free doggie ice cream from the Bear and the Rat and pupsicles from Paw Pups. Pet parents can grab a coupon for a free day of daycare or a bath courtesy of Woof In Boots, and each attendee will be entered into raffle prize drawings, with extra tickets for dogs and their owners who show up dressed in holiday garb. The event is sponsored by Bark Happy, an organization aiming to build an engaged community of dogs, dog owners, and dog friendly businesses. Sunday, December 18, 12–2 p.m.; Woof In Boots, 719 W. 8th Ave.; $12–$15

Causes to Care About

The dZi Foundation: Since 1998, this local nonprofit has worked with Nepal’s remote communities to help improve residents’ quality of life and create a stronger and safer region. Based in Ridgway and founded by longtime mountaineers Jim Nowak and Kim Reynolds, the dZi Foundation focuses on long-term community-led development projects and services that support income generation, infrastructure, education, and health in the most distant and cut-off areas of the country. They employ a handful of U.S. staff, as well as almost 20 Nepali nationals whose on-the-ground work currently serves almost 30,000 people.

Bridge House: More than 1,600 individuals have sought assistance at Boulder’s Bridge House, an organization focused on addressing the immediate needs of the area’s homeless and working poor, and providing resources for employment, housing, and personal stability. The Bridge House’s Resource Center provides a one-stop-shop for services such as mental health and substance abuse evaluations, detoxification, benefits assistance, employment services and more. Plus, the organization host programs such as Ready to Work, which offers a year of support to help train individuals on job searches and provides paid transitional work; and Community Table Kitchen, which not only helps feed the hungry, but also trains individuals to work in the food service industry.

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