Test your hours of basement preparation at the Air Hockey World Championship. Sign up to participate in this annual test of dexterity against players of all levels, or simply watch the fun. Fri-Sat 10 a.m.
Enjoy all the traditional fair fun, but with an added Denver twist. This year's fair offers everything from the standard blue ribbon contests and carts of deep-fried food to watching the Air Hockey World Championships, art lessons for the kids, and even a "pot pavilion." With more than 15 themed stalls, even those without an interest in livestock or pie will find something to entertain them. Fri noon-9 p.m., Sat 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Unless you’re King Joffrey sitting atop the Iron Throne, your desk chair is probably less than thrilling. But as art tends to show, you can find beauty in everything. Artist Lamecia Landrum explores this concept in her new body of work, which includes rustic “found treasure” chair constructions. These stunning pieces are a far cry from their distant cousin, your office chair.
Happy birthday, Colorado! Celebrate the Centennial State's 138th birthday with local food and live entertainment. This two-day event features American Indian dance by Seven Falls Dancers, state songs performed by the Arvada Chorale, and a farmer's market offering locally-sourced jams, baked goods, and produce. Learn more about our state's rich history with free admission to the Byers-Evans House Museum built in 1883. Fri-Sat 10 a.m.
—Photo courtesy Shutterstock
Cyclists hop in the saddle for an alpine road ride of the 78-mile Copper Triangle course. The course takes cyclists through Fremont Pass, Tennessee Pass, and Vail Pass for an elevation gain of 6,000 feet. Participants enjoy a post-ride party of lunch along with prizesand a cycling expo. Don’t miss the Friday night street party in Burning Stones Plaza. Fri 4-8 p.m.; Sat 5:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
If you’re a fan of bold, internationally inspired cuisine from restaurants like Tamayo and Zengo, get an inside look at chef Robert Sandoval’s cooking techniques. Enjoy the food and then test your new skills at home. Fri 5-8 p.m.
With an arsenal of catchy new songs from last year's hit album Grinning Streak, this Canadian pop-rock quartet comes this weekend to perform under the setting Denver sun. The group is bound to play favorites such as "One Week" and "If I Had $1,000,000," which have been staples of pop radio for nearly two decades. Fri 6:30 p.m.
A strong community creates a strong city. That’s the thinking behind Mayor Michael Hancock’s second year of Denver Days, a weeklong community engagement initiative full of neighborhood block parties, service projects, and unadulterated Denver kumbaya. Days, times vary.
It isn’t a proper Colorado summer without an early morning yoga session at one of the state’s most stunning landmarks. Watch the sun rise over the Denver skyline while stretching with more than 1,600 fellow yogis. Make sure to bring your own mat and enough water to stay cool. A portion of the ticket price will benefit the Whole Planet Foundation. Sat 7 a.m.
Break out your sneakers and your whitest T-shirt for the annual color run, a noncompetitive 5K where participants are blasted with paint at every kilometer. This year's event begins at Coors Field and winds through the RiNO District. Come out looking good and feeling great; the Color Run is partnering with the Children's Hospital of Colorado for this year's event. Sat 8 a.m.
Have a budding Banksy or future Mozart? Encourage your kid’s self-expression and creativity at this youth arts festival. There’s a graffiti and chalk drawing area in the outside courtyard; musicians can check out nonprofit Youth on Record’s digital music composition stations or help compose a live masterpiece with Playground Ensemble, a classical music group that specializes in improv. Break for a treat at the on-site hot dog and ice cream stand. Sat 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Debate over the greatest band of all time will rage on forever, but Leftapalooza settles the battle for the greatest tribute band in Colorado. Bands will include Message in a Bottle (The Police), My Blue Sky (The Allman Brothers), Hey, Lady! (The B-52s), The Fab 4 (The Beatles), and others. Hosted by the Left Hand Brewing Company to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, “Hey Jude,” “Take it Easy” and “Stairway to Heaven” will rock a Saturday full of food, beer, and a special kids area. Sat noon.
—Image Courtesy of Left Hand Brewing Company
A low alcohol content doesn’t mean session beers lack on taste. Discover this crisp and unique style of craft beer—containing less than five percent alcohol by volume—in a festival featuring brews from more than 20 Colorado breweries including a new beer from Ska Brewing Co., the Rudie Session IPA. General admission tickets include six tastes, with the opportunity to go unlimited for ten bucks more. Sat 3-7 p.m.
—Photograph courtesy of Sesh Fest
Show off your best beard at a celebration of everyone’s favorite facial hair. The Colorado Beard Club has teamed up with Keep Denver Beard, Colorado Beard and Mustache Collective, and more to throw a party featuring food, drinks, music from DJ Tower, and—of course—a beard and mustache competition. Proceeds benefit Family Homestead, a nonprofit that helps families facing homelessness. Sat 3-7 p.m.
This time around, the mountains are alive with the sound of music. Watch this classic story of Maria Rainer (Katherine Manley), a young governess who falls in love with her boss, Captain von Trapp (Troy Cook), in Nazi-occupied Austria. Days, times vary.
As an activist and abstract painter, Harmony Hammond is known for being bold. Since the 1970's, Hammond has used her artwork as a platform for feminism by organizing and contributing to exhibitions featuring the works of lesbian artists. In this show curated by art historian Tirza True Latimer, browse through Hammond's catelog of work from the textured weave paintings of the '70s to the monochrome mixed media paintings of today. Tue-Fri 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat-Sun 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
—Photo courtesy RedLine
After three decades of music, Motley Crue’s final tour is upon us. The fellas who brought us “Dr. Feelgood” and “Smokin’ In the Boys Room” are the first band to ever sign an agreement preventing future touring. This is your last chance. And by the way, Alice Cooper will be joining them. Sat 7 p.m.
Hold on for dear life as you watch Sandra Bullock and George Clooney hurtle through space this Saturday. The Academy-Award wining thriller is presented for free as a part of the summer-long Southwest Movies series at Skyline Park. It's the second-to-last film of the series, so grab the family and some motion sickness pills and enjoy some high-intensity fun. Sat dusk.
One of the world’s most mentally and physically grueling races is coming to Colorado. The inaugural Ironman Boulder will consist of a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride, and a full marathon. Want to watch? Meet at Boulder High School, where a free shuttle will take you to Boulder Reservoir. Sun 7 a.m. .
Get ready for a full day of face-melting action. The annual Warped Tour brings together the best of rock, punk, and alternative music with performances from Courage My Love, 3OH!3, the Ready Set, and more. Denver is the last stop on the 44-city tour, setting the stage for a climactic performance. Sun 11 a.m.
Sometimes, it only takes one to tango. Watch the Frequent Flyers company's professional dancers use ropes, chains, and cloth as their partners in a myriad of aerial dance styles like invented apparatus and low-flying trapeze. If you're feeling saucy, watch freshly schooled students put on a cabaret, complete with a preshow cocktail hour. Sun-Sat, times vary.
Discover the timeless attraction of Shakespeare’s plays in this open rehearsal of scenes from his most famous works, including Othello, Much Ado About Nothing, and Romeo and Juliet. Actors from Visionbox studio will explore his one-of-a kind verse and prose in this culmination of a month long acting intensive, with food catered by Nova Catering. Sun 6-7:30 p.m.
—Photograph courtesy of Ted Engelmann
Bugs and birds may be all around us, but they're plenty worthy of a closer look. The day starts with kids interacting with insects like bees and butterflies. In the afternoon, they'll set out on a hike and scavenger hunt. The Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory will be on hand to teach children the basics on bird behavior in the wild. Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-noon; 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Cooking will come naturally after this five-day culinary crash course. Kids will learn how to read recipes, measure ingredients, and bake desserts from all over the world. After the flour has settled, each future chef will take home an apron and a packet of the recipes made during the course. Mon-Fri 10 a.m.-noon.
After a summer of fun, kids may need help settling down for another school year. Through painting and dalcroze—an educational technique that emphasizes music, movement, and improvisation—this weeklong course works to focus attention after high-stimulation activities. The course is led by musician and dalcroze instructor Emma Shubin and developmental therapist Alejandra Hudon, who will meet with parents after class to review and pass on their methods. Mon-Fri 1-4 p.m.
From Jackie Brown to Pulp Fiction's Mia Wallace, Quentin Tarantino's leading ladies are anything but damsels in distress. The writer-director has a history of casting fierce, powerful, and alluring women in his main roles. In this four-week course, film critic Lisa Kennedy explores the evolved gender roles present in Tarantino's works. Watch movies such as Reservoir Dogs and Kill Bill and discuss Tarantino's impact on feminism in the cinema. Mon 7 p.m.
It might not be a golden ticket, but it is a free look into pop culture’s most famous fictional candy factory. Pack a blanket and a picnic and let the classic, kooky Willy Wonka take you on a tour of his wondrous candy factory during this Infinity Park screening of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Pro tip: Bring something sweet to eat. You’re going to have a craving by the end of this film.
Denver native Lisa Garness Mallory's unique style of etched photography takes center stage throughout this two-month exhibit. Using needles and wood carving tools, Mallory etches directly into her photographs of flowers and butterflies to add depth to the otherwise flat medium. The display features 12 works, and prints of each will available for purchase. Daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Voted Competitor Magazine's Best Half Marathon of 2013, this annual event is a can't-miss for Colorado athletes. Whether you're a novice jogger or a veteran ultrarunner, racing through this quaint town onto the gently rolling mountain trails near Idaho Springs will allow you to experience Colorado at its best. Sat 8 a.m.
Two of the biggest names in electro-pop come together for one night on Colorado’s most hallowed stage. With their danceable tracks and bright set pieces, these two bands, who will take turns onstage, are sure to get the whole canyon grooving. Tue 5:30 p.m.
Avid foodies and wine lovers will gather for a five-day culinary experience. Special events include seminars, hikes, and dinners that will inspire and educate the epicurean in you. Don’t miss Friday’s Stroll of Steamboat, where delicious treats await you at each stop. Wed-Sun times vary.
Some of Denver’s best chefs square off, presenting their best dishes for you to taste. Sample plates from chefs such as Jeremy Kittelson of Root Down and Linger, Noah French of Sugarmill, and Greg Weabick of Ivy at the Glenn, and then vote for your favorite. Don’t miss a demonstration by the 2013 winner, Thach Tran of ChoLon Bistro. Proceeds benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Wed 5:30 p.m.
The men of Monty Python returned (mostly) with a farewell live show in July, but scheduling left Denver out of the simulcast from London. Now it's Denver's chance to witness that final show, which will be screened three times at the Sie Film Center, featuring all the classic bits Monty Python is so well-known for. This is the last chance to see the legendary Monty Python in action, for the troupe is no more and has ceased to be; it is an ex-comedy troupe. Wed. 7 p.m.; Sat 7 p.m.; Sun 2 p.m.
This is sure to be one of the most talked-about shows of the summer. Lady Gaga—artist, entertainer, singer, and provocateur—embarks on her fourth world tour to promote her critically acclaimed album Artpop. Wed 7:30 p.m.
It’s fair season, and Douglas County is getting in on the act this weekend. The county fair and rodeo will feature horse shows, fashion contests, and county fair staples like the swine show, pie eating contest, and cowpie bingo. Come for the games and stay for the music, played by bands such as the Parker Brothers Band, WMD Bluegrass, and Tyler Walker Band. Thu 7 a.m.-11 p.m;, Fri 9 a.m.-11:30 p.m.; Sat 10:30 a.m.-11:30 p.m.; Sun 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
After sampling burgers from 12 of Colorado’s best restaurants—including Old Major, Larkburger, and Acorn—put your vote in for the coveted People’s Choice Award. General admission gets you unlimited bites from all competitors, access to the open bar, and all-you-can-eat desserts. Thu 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Preseason football doesn’t matter, right? Wrong. Peyton Manning and his Broncos get a shot at Super Bowl redemption when they host the Seattle Seahawks during the first preseason matchup. Thu 7 p.m.
Known for the unique roughness of his voice, Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Ray LaMontagne has become one of the faces of contemporary folk music. His new album, Supernova, was featured at number one on Billboard’s Top Rock Albums chart and shows a new, more psychedelic side to the superstar. Thu 7:30 p.m.
One of the most-loved musicals of all time, bohemian-style rock musical Rent makes another showing in Denver this summer. Catch the performance that revolutionized musicals with a story of young adults confronting poverty, addiction, and HIV/AIDS. Fri-Sat, 7:30 p.m.; Sun 2:30 p.m.
Photographers from across Colorado come together to share their work in this annual public exhibition. Their work will be judged by photographer and writer Eric Biggerstaff, author of several articles for international photography publication View Camera, who will give a speech on August 21. Mon-Fri 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Coloradans like two things: beer and bacon. Bacon-inspired dishes will be paired with sips of Denver Beer Co.’s craft brews, including a collaborative Maya-inspired beer. Fri 5-8 p.m.
Set in New York City, two-star crossed lovers find that their relationship may be at odds when Mona Lisa, an actress, returns home to find her playwright lover, Freddie, packing up the apartment. Written by Jim Lee and directed by Jimmy Walker (both prominent contributors to Denver-based The Source Theater Company), Packin’ It In is set to pack the house (pun intended). Thu-Sat 7 p.m; Sun 2 p.m.
Join Katharine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers, and Lucille Ball this Friday as they try to make it big in New York City during the classic comedy Stage Door. The last event in Elitch Gardens' summer-long Film Series, this screening will be outside under the Colorado summer stars. It's a family-friendly event that will also feature live music, food, and a chance to win prizes. Fri 7 p.m.
Bill Maher isn’t one to shy away from sensitive subject matter. As the creator of the 2008 documentary Religulous and host of the HBO political satire show Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher’s standup comedy focuses on religion, politics, and bureaucracy, and is delivered with a heavy dose of sarcasm. Fri 8 p.m.
Want a taste of a triathlon but not ready to run full speed ahead? This is the easy (or easier) version for you. In its ninth year, the Splash Mash Dash is the original Highlands Ranch sprint triathlon. With an outdoor pool instead of an open water swim, it’s the perfect, non-intimidating environment beginning triathletes are looking for. Sat 6 a.m.
And they say there’s no such thing as a free haggis. Obviously, they’ve never experienced the Colorado Scottish Festival. This annual event brings bagpipes, Highland dancing, the Scottish athletic games, and, yes, free haggis to the good people of Colorado. Sat 9 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
This is one trip to Winter Park for which we wouldn’t recommend packing your skis. Hop on a bike with some friends and ride the 70-mile stretch from Denver’s City Park to Winter Park. Mechanical support and feed stations are set up along the way to the finish line, where the ride culminates with a raffle and barbecue at the base of the resort. Proceeds benefit Wish For Wheels, a program that donates bikes to children, and Goodwill’s Good Bikes program, which refurbishes bikes for sale at the store. Sat 7 a.m.
Break out the suit jackets and commit to growth in both your health and your business. Join the mentor walk during which you can get some exercise and mentorship from an established business professional all at the same time. Or, sign up for the 5K fun run and take a jog in your business casual best; a portion of the proceeds benefits nonprofit A Precious Child, which supports underprivileged children. Sat 8 a.m.
The national obsession spawned by the Discovery Channel’s annual Shark Week goes local. The Denver Aquarium kicks this year’s celebration off with live shark feedings, dive shows, scavenger hunts, and more. And this event isn’t all about big teeth chomping on little fish. There will also be a conservation booth to address the predators’ waning numbers. Sat 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sun 10 am.-9 p.m.
There’s no better backdrop for art than the Rockies. Frisco’s annual two-day art fest celebrates everything from painting and mixed media to jewelry and sculpture. Be sure to check out Colorado’s David Bolin and his photographs of wildlife. Sat-Sun 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
It’s not every weekend you see a vibrant Chinese dragon traipse down the Pearl Street Mall in downtown Boulder. This two-day cultural mashup of Asian and Pacific Island heritage includes musical performances, dance lessons, and traditional eats. Sat-Sun 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
In a compeition of precision aim and perfect arc, this round-robin cornhole tournament will test paired teams to out-toss opponents. Twenty cornhole sets at City Park's soccer field are the scene for this annual event that guarantees three games per team with a chance to win a trophy and gift cards to Stoney's Bar & Grill and Vine Street Pub. Don't make it into the winner's circle? Participate in an auction with prizes such as a date night package from 5280 Magazine and a custom-made cornhole set to start practicing for next year.
Lean back and enjoy craft brews, wines, and local food while more than 500 professional cyclists compete for the USA Cycling Colorado State Championship. They’ll whiz by you on a closed-circuit course at speeds up to 40 miles per hour. As the race continues into the night, spectators can dance in the streets during a free concert from Tunisia. Sat 11 a.m.
Explore the Colorado Railroad Museum's 15-acre railyard and catch a ride on railroads that were once used to transport beer in and out of Golden. The afternoon event celebrates the history and heritage of Colorado beer. Enjoy craft beer samples from Barrels & Bottles Brewery, Cannonball Creek Brewery, Arvada Beer Company, and more. Food trucks including Gusto's, B&B's Smokehouse Meats, and Hot Dippity Dog will also be onsite, providing delicious bites to pair with your beer. Sat noon-4 p.m.
Tour the tastes of Colorado's wineries including Garfield Estates, Avanti Winery, and more at this festival. Indulge in sumptuous food pairings created by local chefs as you take in the beautiful scenery that surrounds you. Proceeds will benefit the YMCA of Metropolitan Denver. Sat 2-7 p.m.
Fermented food may not sound delectable, but one of the oldest forms of food preservation is worth a taste. Unlimited tastes of beer, sauerkraut, and Kombucha will test your palate at this festival spotlighting culinary feats of turning sugar into acid, gases, and alcohol. If one taste isn't enough, try your hand at various classes like the art of making sake, home cheesemaking, and crafting season home batch fruit wines. Sat-Sun 3:30-7:30 p.m.
—Photo Courtesy of Local Eyes Productions.
Brews and bites abound in this back-alley setting between Champa Street and Curtis Street. Sample beers from craft breweries such as Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, Crabtree Brewing Company, and Aspen Brewing Company. Also enjoy food pairings prepared by chef Matt Mine of Rialto Cafe. Sat 4-8 p.m.
Lasers are taking over the night sky. Watch as Centennial Center Park turns into a family-friendly Daft Punk music video with its brilliant light show. But the evening consists of more than just flashing lights: Live music from Journey tribute band DSB and an ad-hoc farmers’ market will also delight. Sat 6-10 p.m.
Stop by this shopping hub for premium eats and smooth drinks. This night of fine food and live music is fueled by Cherry Creek’s top restaurants, such as Vinue Food & Wine Bar, Harman’s Eat & Drink, and Continental Deli. Sat 6-9:30 p.m.
You’ve never been on a jog like this before. During this glow-in-the-dark 5K run/walk, participants are splashed with neon paint while dance music pumps along the route. Instead of hitting the showers once the race is over, head straight to the After Dash Bash for performances, music, and drinks. Sat 6 p.m.
Those in a fit of rock nostalgia are in luck. During every show of Yes’ 35-stop summer tour, the band promises to play the entirety of two classic albums: 1971’s Fragile and 1972’s Close to the Edge. The encore, though, is reserved for new material. Sat 8 p.m.
There’s nothing like stretching out on a picnic blanket under the stars, especially when it’s accompanied by an outdoor movie. Skyline Park treats city-goers to just that, showing Man of Steel as soon as dusk rolls around. The film will cap off their Southwest Movies at Skyline Par” series, so now’s your last chance to get in on the fun. Fri dusk.
Though she was born in South Korea, abstract painter Young Hee Back takes a Colorado approach to her art: highlighting the connection between humans and nature. She’ll be sharing gallery space with local artist Louis Trujillo, whose drawings and paintings explore heavy themes such as death and religion. Thu-Sat times vary.
Let the tunes ring off the hillsides. Wander between two stages to take in live music from groups spanning the music landscape. Don’t miss the headliners, including 10,000 Maniacs and the Marshall Tucker Band. Want to check out the up-and-comers? Use your applause to vote in the Battle of the (local) Bands, in which the top two finalists in each of four categories will compete for more than $2,000 worth of prizes. Sun 11 a.m.
—Image Courtesy of Red Stag Productions
Peter Frampton has made a career out of pushing the envelope. He was the first musician to popularize the talk box (the original Auto-Tune); he tried his hand at acting in the late ’70s; and he recently recorded an entire album inspired by the Cincinnati Ballet. Sun 6:30 p.m.
Here’s a chance for your little one to learn about all things gross—but essential—in the human body by exploring animal anatomy. Brave campers can dissect animal organs like hearts and lungs to better understand what goes on under our own hoods. Grades 4-6. Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m
The Von Traps aren’t the only family to enjoy singing together in a meadow. Join local performers Jeff and Paige on a short hike in Boulder’s beautiful Chautauqua Park, followed by 45 minutes of sing-a-long friendly science and nature-based music on the green. Participants are encouraged to bring along picnics, blankets, and a loud singing voice. Mon 5:30-7 p.m.
—Photo Courtesy of Meadow Music.
We’re all connected. Travis Hetman’s new exhibition explores the subtle inclusiveness of all human beings. Using found photographs, graphite, acrylic, and spray paint, this Denver artist’s 2D works and instillations will try to unveil a human's true self once ego and individualism is set aside. Look for the canvas "Dark Matter Gathering," a striking example of this technique that alters a found family photograph with bold spots of acrylic paint. Sat 7 p.m.
—Photograph Courtesy of Amanda Tipton
B.B. King may perform seated, but he’s been bringing fans to their feet with his blues guitar riffs since the 1940s. He’s released more than 60 albums and, even at 88, still knows how to bring the house down. Mon 7 p.m.
Getting the boot off American Idol doesn’t mean contestants are doomed for reality TV oblivion. Instead, they head straight to a stage near you. The top 10 finalists of the latest season, including Jena Irene and Caleb Johnson, are giving fans one last hurrah on this nationwide tour. Mon 7:30 p.m.
Before the summer theater season winds down, stop by Vintage Theatre for comedy drama Mack & Mabel: The Musical. The story takes us through the raucous relationship between Hollywood director Mack Sennett and silent film comedian and actress Mabel Normand. It’s a classic (think pre-1930) Hollywood love story. Days, times vary.
When hiking loses its allure, add some altitude and a quicker pace. Run this 120-mile route—solo or as part of a team—which treks through the Rockies from Buena Vista to Beaver Creek. Tents, showers, and beer will be waiting at each campsite. Don’t forget your water-resistant jacket, warm hat, gloves, and emergency blanket; organizers won’t let you past the starting line without them. Tue-Wed 8:30 a.m.; Thu-Sun 8 a.m.
During World War II, the 332nd Fighter Group and the 477th Bombardment Group of the United States Army Air Forces—better-known as the Tuskegee Airmen—were the first black aviators to fly for the U.S. military. Learn about their heroism in Rise Above, a 30-minute film highlighting the obstacles these men faced as they overcame history to become U.S. Army Air Corps pilots in the early ’40s. The film will show every hour during regular operating hours at the Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum. Mon-Sat 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun noon-5 p.m.
Who says theater is dying? The annual Colorado Theatre Festival indulges performing arts buffs with a four-day festival featuring workshops and local shows. Explore everything from acting to set design to the do's and don'ts of auditions. Then catch a show from one of 10 local production companies. Wed-Sat, times vary.
Join Oscar-winning director Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave) and several artists at "Making the Change They Want to See," a symposium on how the insights and provocations of art can bring greater justice to the world. A reception with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres follows McQueen’s keynote Wednesday evening. Wed 1:30-7:30 p.m.; Thu 1:30-5:30 p.m.
In his new exhibit, artist Ian Fisher uses a paintbrush to create photograph-like portraits of clouds. The paintings depict the clouds not just for what they are, but what they represent: timelessness and creativity. Participants can attend the opening reception as well as a discussion with the artist. Wed 5:30 p.m.
With more than two decades of continuous recording and touring under her belt, singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow felt she needed to settle down. Her newest album, Feels Like Home, was recorded in Crow’s hometown of Nashville and drew most of its inspiration from her two children. Wed 6:30 p.m.
Celebrate Aurora’s international community with a festival of dance and music. Performances include salsa dancing by the Diana Sanchez Dance Company and Japanese flute music from Koto Colorado. While you watch the entertainment, sample cuisine from restaurants such as Nile Ethiopian Restaurant, Pho 888 Vietnamese Grill, and more. Don’t miss the beer market for a wide array of brews from all over the world. Sat noon-10 p.m.
Bruno Novelli, also known as Bruno 9li, has made a name for himself as an artist in both his home country of Brazil and abroad. His abstract graphic paintings, usually done in ink or acrylic paint, are a window into a frenzied world of geometric shapes and animalistic creatures. Last year, he helped design a snowboard for Seattle-based gear company Ride Snowboards, and now he’s bringing his third solo U.S. exhibit to Denver. Tue-Sat noon-6 p.m.
Enjoy an evening of signature tastes from Denver’s best chefs, including Troy Guard (TAG Restaurants), Darrel Truett (Barolo), and more while sipping on fine wines served in a commemorative wine glass. Participate in the silent auction to win concert tickets, hotel and spa packages, artwork, and more. Proceeds benefit the National Sports Center for the Disabled. This event is sold out. Thu 6-9 p.m.
For the first time in decades, see former Denver Museum of Nature and Science director Dr. Alfred M. Bailey's 1968 documentary on his adventures through the Alaskan wilderness. Watch as he traverses unforgiving sections of wilderness and bumps into some of the backcountry's most exquisite beasts, like the brown bear. The film will be paired with Dr. Bailey's original commentary, which he initially delivered live to audiences while screening the film. Thu 7 p.m.
The last time indie folk band The Head and the Heart visited Denver, they sold out the Ogden Theatre. The group heads to Denver on a similar high this time; members appeared on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon last week. This Red Rocks show managed to sell out, too; however, tickets can usually be found through partner sites. Thu 7 p.m.
A play about relationships, marriage, and man's best friend, Sylvia tells the story of how a stray dog wandering around Central Park changes a middle-aged businessman's sedated life. Watch the performance during its four-week run with original Avenue cast members Amie MacKenzie and John Ashton. Thu 7:30 p.m.
—Photograph courtesy of Eric Weber
Jenny Lewis’ claim to fame is not just her solo career. She's the former frontwoman of indie band Rilo Kiley as well as a storied actress, appearing on television shows ranging from animated comedy American Dad to the 1980s revival of The Twilight Zone. We can safely bet that her performances of half-pop, half-folk songs like “Just One of the Guys” or “She’s Not Me” will be much less brain-bending than the sci-fi classic. Thu 8 p.m.
RugbyTown USA is hosting the world. The Serevi RugbyTown Sevens tournament takes over Glendale with 7-on-7 matches between hometown the favorite Glendale Raptors, the Bermuda National Team, the Mexico National Team, and teams from branches of the U.S. military. If you've never seen a rugby match before, snag free admission on Friday's games to check out the fast-paced game set to make its Olympic debut in 2016. The weekend's festivities continue with the Glendale Bruises and Brews Beerfest, the Epilogues concert, and the Taste of Glendale. Fri-Sun times vary.
When Matt Sesow was 8 years old, he lost a hand after it was struck by the propeller of an airplane, and turned to art as an emotional outlet. Now he's internationally recognized. This Denver exhibit explores the accessibility of resources including healthcare, natural foods, and economic opportunity in society. Sesow's unique works are available for both viewing and purchase. Tue-Fri 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Larisa Aukon’s paintings showcase the amazing color of the southwest United States. Her landscapes, while a bit more surreal, capture the essence of our mountains, animals, rocks, and cities. Aukon’s work has been featured in Southwest Art Magazine, American Art Collector, and more. Tue-Sat 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun noon-4 p.m.
The sweet and smoky scent of barbecue is luring Coloradans up to the forested hillsides of Meyer Ranch for the annual Conifer Mountain BBQ Challenge. The cookoff is an official Kansas City BBQ Society-sanctioned event with 40 teams competing for cash prizes. The ultimate honor comes in being named Grand Champion and locking down an invite to the World Championships.
Craft brewed beers are not simply beverages, but art. Celebrate the art of ales from breweries, including Oskar Blues Brewery, Pikes Peak Brewing, and more. Stroll around galleries and exhibits as you imbibe. Fri 6-10 p.m.
Fill your ears with music and your mouth with flavor at this smorgasbord of entertainment. Listen to bands, including Denver-based blues act Delta Sonics, between seminars that teach skills like how to become a backyard farmer. You won’t have to reach for your wallet, except for the four-course farm-to-table dinner; proceeds benefit science education nonprofit Walking Mountains Science Center. Fri 6-9 p.m.; Sat 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.; Sun 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Twist & Shout continues its tradition of free, live performances with Bill Nershi, a founding member of Boulder-bred jam band The String Cheese Incident, who will play a 30-minute acoustic set. In addition to kicking off your weekend with some bare-bones tunes, Nershi will hang out after the show to sign copies of his new songbook. Fri 6 p.m.
Some of Colorado’s finest female filmmakers come together to showcase a variety of flicks, from short films and feature-length documentaries to animations and music videos. The two-day festival will feature 23 women and includes an after party on Saturday. Fri-Sat 7:00 p.m.-10 p.m.
In this oddball comedy about death, Pulitzer Prize-finalist playwright Sarah Ruhl toys with the paradox of modern technology: completely connected yet utterly isolated. Dead Man’s Cell Phone is the Theater Company of Lafayette’s third show in its 2014 season and will play in the historic Mary Miller Theater, which was first built in 1892 as the town’s congregational church. Fri-Sat 7:30 p.m.; Sun 2 p.m.
As the nephew of actor Steve Harvey (hence his stage name “Nephew Tommy”), Thomas Miles walks in his uncle’s footsteps by injecting humor into his acting roles in TV shows and independent films. As a co-host for the Steve Harvey Morning Show, Miles is known for his prank phone calls and impersonations. Fri-Sat 9:45 p.m.
Take on the trifecta of sports challenges in the inaugural Beyond the Horizon Triathlon. The race features scenic views of Rocky Mountain National Park, a chance to swim in the largest natural body of water in Colorado, and a bike ride on the historic Trail Ridge Road. If you aren’t a triathlete, there are still many ways to observe the competition, with bird’s-eye views of the lake and camping spots on Trail Ridge Road to watch the cyclists.
More than 8,000 people will come together to walk or run in support of the HIV-positive community. After completing the 5K course, enjoy a beer garden, numerous speakers, dozens of local vendors, and even a high heel fun run during the post-event Celebration of Life Festival. Sat 9 a.m.
Mushroom science is the focus of this year's fungi festival in Telluride. Join keynote speakers like Langdon Cook, author of "The Mushroom Hunters," and professional 'shroom cultivator John Holliday for talks on the delicious and medicinal properties of the fungus. Don't miss the foraging sessions, where experts will teach you how to distinguish the toxic from the tasty in the wild. Sat-Tues all day.
Familiarize yourself with the area's top artists at the second annual Golden Fine Arts Festival. Browse art forms such as fiber, sculpture, jewelry, or enjoy from afar while you listen to two stages of live music featuring bands like singer-songwriter Kyle James Hauser. This year's featured artist is painter Carolyn Miller, a former high school art teacher whose nature painting Survivors graces the festival's posters. Sat-Sun 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Fido is as loyal as they come. Doesn’t he deserve a day to be celebrated? The Denver Pet Expo is coming to town with the latest in pet products, training and grooming classes, and prize giveaways for both you and your four-legged friends to enjoy. Sat 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Coined as "Probably the Best Little Festival in the World," Chive Fest is a day packed with music, food, and fireworks. Sponsored by the funny photo and video sharing site the Chive, this music festival features eight indie bands including Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Cold War Kids, and White Denim on two stages. Stop by the Nostalgia Tent with games such as a life-size Operation game, and indulge on plenty of local eats and beverages. Sat 1 p.m.
This musical tale begins with an unexpected sisterhood bond made between four strangers at a lingerie sale. The all-female cast explores the taboo woes of menopause, from hot flashes to mood swings, through popular songs from the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. Sat 2 p.m., 7:30 p.m.
Interested in the Japanese artist who influenced Andy Warhol and the ’50s pop art movement? Don’t miss Portraying Infinity, a hands-on workshop where attendees will use geometric shapes to mimic the artistic style of Warhol’s inspiration, Yayoi Kusama. Sat 2-3:30 p.m.
Celebrate craft beer culture with an unlimited sampling of more than 40 breweries including Crazy Mountain Brewery and Great Divide Brewing Company. The craft beer and music festival boasts international brews and tunes from the nationally-renowned North Mississippi Allstars. Sat 3-10 p.m.
The Wildlife Experience is going “to infinity and beyond” with a screening of Toy Story 3D. With a ticket, attendees have access to a wide array of Toy Story-related carnival games and crafts, along with admission to the museum. Don your favorite Toy Story costume, and declare your allegiance to “Team Woody” or “Team Buzz.” Sat 3:30 p.m.
Sample beer from breweries like Great Divide Brewing Co., Ska Brewing Co., and more in a 1930s Air Force hangar. Pair your favorite brew with smoky bites of barbecue from Jim ‘N Nick’s Community Bar-B-Q. Set the mood for a night of down-home food and fun with soulful music from the Black and Blues Guys, a Blues Brothers tribute band. Sat 6-10 p.m.
Get a sneak peek of the Colorado Ballet’s upcoming fall production season with excerpts from A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Dracula beneath the summer night sky. Ranging from dramatic to light-hearted performances, this ballet sampler also includes one of the company’s recent repertory works, The Last Beat, set to five DeVotchKa songs. Sat 7:30 p.m.
Pick a tour, pick an animal, and start hoofin' it. Each evening, guests walk to four Denver neighborhood restaurants for bited focused on a different hoofed animal: bison, goat, pig, and cow. Participating restaurants include Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar, Bad Apple, and Lola. A portion of proceeds will benefit Mile High Business Alliance. Sun-Wed 5:30 p.m., 6 p.m., and 6:30 p.m.
—Photo Courtesy of Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar
Five number one Billboard singles and 11 top-10 songs have kept this young Hawaiian crooner busy. This summer, he’s wrapping up a 154-show tour that began more than a year ago and has taken him to nearly 40 countries. This show sold out quickly, but tickets can still be found online. Sun 8 p.m.
The USA Pro Challenge has become a staple of bike racing in America. This seven-day race will start in Aspen/Snowmass and finish in Boulder and Denver. Each stop features a free community festival with music, food, and drinks. Daily, times vary.
Ditch the training wheels at this foundational bike riding class. Kids will learn how to maneuver Striders, bicycles without pedals, to establish their balance on two wheels. Don’t have a Strider yet? Buy one at the camp, where 100 percent of the proceeds benefit Kids on Bikes, a program that provides bicycles for at-risk youth. Mon-Fri 10-11 a.m.
If you haven't seen Rob Reiner's hilarious chicken-soup comfort movie The Princess Bride yet, remedy that at this outdoor screening. Simple farmboy Wesley only wants to be with his beloved maiden, Princess Buttercup. But the six-fingered man, Fezzik the giant, and Vizzini the Sicilian have other plans. Mon 8 p.m.
The son of one of the most legendary musicians of all time, Ziggy Marley keeps his father’s rhythm alive with a unique mix of reggae and rock. He is touring through 41 cities and three countries this summer to promote his infectious new album, Fly Rasta. Tue 8 p.m.
Their self-titled debut album may be celebrating its 41st (!) anniversary this year, but classic rockers Aerosmith have showed no signs of slowing down. Let Rock Rule, the band's 27th (!!) tour, promises to showcase all the classics from Steven Tyler and co., including "Sweet Emotion," "Walk This Way," "Dude," and many others. Rock group Slash with Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators opens. Tue 9:30 p.m.
Sip and stroll your way through the Old South Pearl Street neighborhood on a tour of modern wine and cuisine. This annual walking tour covers two blocks and three of the neighborhood’s best restaurants. Kick off the night with low-country, Southern-style appetizers and wine pairings at Fourteen Seventy-Two before heading to Session Kitchen for more wine samples and modern American fare. Finish your meal with small bites at the Black Pearl. Wed 6-9 p.m.
Shayna Ferm and MC Doula are two Denver moms who aren’t afraid to say what everyone is thinking about parenthood. Their live comedy variety show, including songs, games, prizes, and wine, is designed to remind parents of who they were before they had children. Book a babysitter and escape to an adults-only, kid-inappropriate night out. Wed 7:30 p.m.
This over-the-top performance of glitz and glam is like taking a trip to Las Vegas without ever leaving the Mile High City. Dressed head-to-toe in feathers, beads, and glitter, this Denver-based female dance troupe combines samba, mambo, belly dance, and Bollywood dance in its high-energy shows. Wed 8 p.m.
After the success of last year's inaugural High Plains Comedy Festival, the three-day event, headlined this time by Pete Holmes, T.J. Miller, and Kumail Nanjiani, returns to Denver with nearly three dozen comedians on the program. Shows take place at a handful of venues—all of which are on or just off Broadway—so be sure to check the website for more info. Thu-Sat, times vary.
As summer dwindles, soak in the weather by strolling through this outdoor market while supporting local business. Find locally grown food, jewelry, crafts, clothing and other treasures sold by Denver community members and local businesses. Make sure to take in a live concert by acoustic artist Kenny Lee Young at noon. Thu 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
The fine line between fashion and culture is often blurred with each one influencing the other in inexplicable ways. Seventeen local artists will explore this relationship in a photography exhibit addressing themes such as gender roles in fashion and the different perceptions of beauty in today’s society. Select historical prints from History Colorado archives will also be included in the exhibit. Wed-Fri noon-5 p.m.; Sat noon-4 p.m.
—Photo Courtesy Melanie Watson
Come for the party before the party. Check out the 40-plus architecture entries submitted to the Newman Awards, put on by Rocky Mountain chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Art. (The winners will be announced September 17 at the awards ceremony.) This free event will feature food, cocktails, and some of the finest architecture in the Front Range. Thu 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Expand your culinary knowledge with a customized demonstration and tasting of Southwestern cuisine. Chef Jeff Bolton of Kachina Southwestern Grill will educate you on the techniques of chile roasting, use of chia seeds, methods for clay baking, and more. Attendees can enjoy a complimentary glass of wine or draft beer along with samples of chef Bolton's authentic Southwestern foods. Reservations are required. Thu 6-8 p.m.
Mystery, comedy, illusion—it’s all part of Sleightly Impossible, a two-man spectacle put on by Denver magicians Gene R. Gordon and Matthew C. Brandt. Think dueling pianos, but with magic and comedy. A cash bar wiith beverages will be available. Thu 7:30-9 p.m.
Pedal your way to the corner of 15th and Platte, just outside REI, for a end-of-summer movie under the stars. Watch the 1985 classic the Goonies—the comedic tale of a group of kids' adventure in search of pirate treasure—on the lawn while sipping on beer provided by New Belgium and food truck eats. All proceeds benefit Denver's bicycle advocacy group BikeDenver. Thu 7:30 p.m.
—Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock
Two of the most exciting acts in indie rock come together for a night of explosive fun. In addition to playing separate sets, the psychedelic pop of Portugal The Man and electro rock of Grouplove will merge for a special collaborative portion of the show. This one-night event is part of the summer-long Honda Civic Tour. Thu 7:30 p.m.
It's an event highlighted by a strong man who bends steel bars with his bare hands, a magician in a top hat and red coat, and a team of dancing dogs. Yes, of course, it's the Colorado State Fair. In addition to the performances there are carnival rides and all of the fair food you only allow yourself to eat once a year. Mon-Thu noon-11 p.m., Fri-Sun 10 a.m.-11 p.m.
You don't have to be a corn enthusiast to enjoy the annual Old Fashioned Corn Roast Festival—but it sure doesn't hurt. Throughout the two days of family fun, your corn experiences can vary from corn-shucking competitions to simply enjoying all the roasted and boiled cobs you can eat. In addition, there will be dozens of vendors (corn-related and otherwise), a parade on Saturday morning, and live local music. Fri-Sat, times vary.
Your kids might know what recognize shooting stars or the rings of Saturn are, but do they know why they exist? This educational short film reveals these mysteries of our solar system along with many others, starting with Earth's constant cosmic companion, the sun. Daily 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., noon, 2:30 p.m.
Celebrate Children’s Day, a Japanese holiday honoring all boys and girls, by crafting a traditional paper fish wind sock. Kids will make scales out of colorful tissue paper and affix streamers to their fishies’ tails. The workshop takes about half an hour, after which your small fry can hang her creation high to swim in the wind. Fri 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Explore the possibility of another species outside Earth with a film that searches for evidence of alien beings. The 360-degree, Fulldome planetarium show narrated by Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter films) offers audience members an educational and entertaining experience. This 25-minute film about galactic communities and communication comes to you from the creators of other informative films such as Astronaut and We Are Astronomers. Daily 1 and 3 p.m.
Since its publication more than 60 years ago, Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl—Frank's first-person observations of being a Jewish child in Nazi-occupied Germany—has touched audiences around the world. In this rare opportunity, Eva Schloss, Anne Frank’s stepsister who discovered and published Anne Frank’s diary, will talk about her many worldly experiences. A cocktail reception will precede the presentation with an opportunity for guests to talk with Schloss about her book, Eva's Story. Fri 4:30.
—Photo Courtesy of Eva Schloss
Creative minds are on display at this staged reading where three to four short shows, written by Colorado playwrights, are selected to face off. Local theater professionals judge the plays, but the audience has the opportunity to ask questions or comment on each piece. Attendees can stay post-competition for a chance to meet the playwrights and judges. Fri 7 p.m.
As former openers for comedy giants Craig Ferguson and Dave Chapelle, Steve 'Mudflap' McGrew and Chris Voth are now headlining a stage of their own. Listen to two separate routines by the Denver-based comedians, who both have a history of bringing humor to the mundane occurrences of day-to-day life. Fri 7:30 p.m.
Fifty years after Beatlemania seized Red Rocks—the only show of that tour that wasn't a sell-out—the band's indelible catalogue returns to Colorado's favorite venue. Authentic in dress and sound, 1964 will show Morrison why Rolling Stone called the group the world's best Beatles tribute band, performing songs that five generations can sing along with. Fri 8 p.m.
With 40 bands set to jam, this is a must-see (and hear) for all music lovers. Several performers hail from California and Texas, but the majority come from Colorado, representing everywhere from Grand Junction to Boulder. Six stages will be set up with both indoor and outdoor arenas, making it hard to pick just one place to stand. Sat, times vary.
Keeping tabs on Denver’s dining scene is daunting. Ease your trepidation by testing out restaurants like Cholon Modern Asian Bistro and Elway’s, each one offering a special, multi-course menu at $30 per person. More than 200 restaurants will be participating, including a range of cuisines, from sushi to French. Daily, times vary
—Photograph Courtesy of Marc Piscotty
End the summer on a healthy high note with Runapalooza, a race along Ralston Creek Trail through Arvada’s open spaces and gorgeous golf course communities. With 5K, 10K, and half marathon options, the event has something for almost every runner. Post-run, replenish with complimentary fruit, bagels, breakfast burritos, and chocolate milk. Proceeds benefit the Alzheimer’s Association Colorado Chapter. Sat 7-10:30 a.m.
Celebrate peach season with a 5K around CSU's Hughes Stadium and a whole lot of pie at this annual Fort Collins festival. After the run, enter one of the peach pie-eating contests, or if you've had enough competition, kick back and enjoy live music from local bands Kurtis & Jennifer and Weekend Weather, and folk band Lois and the Lantern. Sat 8:30 a.m.
It’s time again for the ultimate challenge in amateur athletics: the NFL’s Punt, Pass, and Kick competition. Boys and girls ages six to 15 can show off their mastery of football fundamentals in this no-contact, learning environment. Bring your cannon, your boot, and your sneakers (no cleats). Sat 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Reward your child for being so good this summer with a picnic of “marvelous things to eat and wonderful games to play,” as the classic song goes. All children will receive their very own teddy bear, and first graders and kindergarteners will receive a bag of school supplies. There will also be games and prizes sure to wear your little teddy bear out before you take them home for bed. Sat 10 a.m.
Come celebrate the folks who keep Colorado’s natural resources beautiful and accessible. Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado are celebrating 30 years of protecting the Centennial State with live music from WhiteWater Ramble, local food and beer, and family-friendly activities. Sat 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
The grass is always bluer on the Boulder side. Music from bluegrass bands such as Dakota Blonde, Stanleytones, Giddyup Kitty, and more will keep your feet stomping all day. Check out the food and drink vendors along with the Four Mile Fire Department's fire truck; donate to raise money for a new fire station. Sat noon-8:30 p.m.
Boulder hop-heads unite to share their craft with Colorado. More than a dozen Boulder County–based breweries, including Left Hand Brewing Company and Oskar Blues Brewery, will keep beer flowing for the festivities. Enjoy food from several restaurants while listening to music from the Hillbenders and Andy Hackbarth. If five hours of drinking isn’t up your alley, help your friends out and serve as their designated driver; you’ll get five non-alcoholic drinks and a $10 food voucher for a third of the festival price. Sat noon-5 p.m.
Jane Christie puts the beauty of the Centennial State on the canvas with an impressionistic style that embraces light and color. She’ll be painting on-site, so make sure to ask about her thought process. Sat 1-4 p.m.
Is there a better backdrop to art than beautiful gardens? Art Farm, Denver Urban Garden's annual celebration, returns to the West Washington Park Community Garden to display work from Denver painters and sculptures. Live music, local brews, and treats from Whole Foods Market complement the idyllic evening. While the event is free, be sure to RSVP on the website. Sat 4 p.m.
Kids will lace up their rollerskates (or -blades) for a few laps to unwind before they head back to the classroom grind. Skaters can request their favorite family-friendly songs from the DJ while they heel-toe around the track. Parents can relive the roller-skating glory of yesteryear by skating along. But beware: Hell hath no fury like a child embarrassed. Sat 5:30-9 p.m.
BBC's cult classic returns for an eighth season, and thanks to Denver Film Center, you can watch the premiere on the big screen. Doctors, time travel, aliens, and space ships—Dr. Who has something for every sci-fi fan. Sat 6 p.m.
Watch the area's best drag queens strut their stuff at this gender-bending variety show. These lovely ladies will perform karaoke and stand-up comedy, and lip-sync throughout the evening, which is dedicated to de-stigmatizing HIV. Proceeds go to Atlas, the Dairy Center for the Performing Arts' HIV prevention program. Sat 7:30 p.m.
Does your youngster have the stamina and heart of a cycling champion? Little riders up to age five, suited up in jerseys and helmets, will race Strider balance bikes around Voorhies Memorial Pond (also known as Seal Pond) course on the north end of Civic Center Park. The tykes, who will race with other speedsters in their age groups) will blend in with the world's best riders as the USA Pro Challenge finishes up Stage Seven at the park later that afternoon. Sun 11 a.m.
—Photograph courtesy of Steve Diamond
Pull out your maps and prepare to explore the streets of Denver for this massive quest. Teams of two can sign up for a scavenger hunt that will lead them throughout the city to take photos and complete challenges, all while racing others following the trail of clues. Teams will cover about five to seven miles in the span of two to four hours, but be sure to stick around afterward for an awards ceremony. Sun 11:30 a.m.
Experience an emotionally raw and intimate performance by rock veteran Melissa Etheridge. As part of her This is ME tour, Etheridge brings a stripped-down version of her signature rugged rock sound to the Mile High City. Etheridge will take the stage solo as she plays through a discography of hits from a career that spans more than two decades. Tue 7 p.m.
An edgier side of Colbie Caillat is filling the Garden, the Denver Botanic Gardens that is. The Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter's latest album, Gypsy Heart, introduces a shift in sound for the acoustic folk-pop star—its heavy production and use of electronic melodies set to lyrics about natural beauty and breakups provides a more upbeat, edgy collection of songs. Listen to new tracks such as "Try" and "Blaze," as well as older hits like "Bubbly." Pop duo Alex & Sierra, winners of the final season of the X Factor, open. Wed 7 p.m.
This Baltimore-based indie pop ensemble is equal parts emotion and energy. A recent performance of its hit song “Seasons” on the Late Show with David Letterman went viral. The show had to be moved from the Bluebird Theatre to a larger venue because it sold out so fast. Wed 8 p.m.
If you've ever wondered what the deal is with that statue of a pile of sausages on the 16th Street Pedestrian Bridge, here's your chance to get better acquainted. This street fair will feature red cupcakes and red beers to honor National Velvet, John McEnroe's conceptual art piece on the 16th, as well as poetry readings inspired by the work. Thu 5:30 p.m.
Bid farewell to another summer with the sound of the surf. Denver’s the Beloved Invaders will play classic beach tunes at the annual end-of-summer concert, including “Mirsirlou” from Pulp Fiction, The Chantays' “Pipeline,” Duke Ellington's “Caravan,” and more. Enjoy one more relaxing evening in the park before winter sets in and summer nights become a memory. Thu 6:30-8 p.m.
Watch the Shakespearean tale of a sorcerer's scheme to reclaim his title as Duke of Milan unfold on London's National Theatre stage—without leaving the comfort of the Mile High City. Since 2009, National Theatre Live has shared live recordings of classic plays with cinemas around the world. Starring Chistopher Plummer (the Sound of Music, the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, A Beautiful Mind) as Prospero, the Tempest—originally performed in 2010—will be displayed on the big screen for two nights only. Fri 7 p.m., Sun 2 p.m.
Agnes and Peter, two lonely and lost souls, come together in a seedy motel room. But a problem arises: an infestation both of the room and their minds. Fear and paranoia take center stage for this drama written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tracy Letts. Fri-Sat 7 p.m.
Choices always have implications, some just last longer than others. This is the premise for this 2009 Broadway play that follows two Chicago police officers as they deal with the repercussions from a serious on-duty error. The show broke the highest weekly gross for a non-musical Broadway production when it opened in 2009 starring Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman. Fri-Sat 8 p.m., Sun 6 p.m.
Sample a showcase of Colorado’s culinary delights. Festivalgoers will taste their way through flavors from 50 of the state’s best restaurants, including the Broker, La Cour French Bistro, and Art Bar. Chefs such as James Beard Award–winning author Adrian Miller will share tips, secrets, and techniques to take home. Fri 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sat-Sun 10:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Mon 10:30 a.m.-8 p.m.
Rev up your hog and head to Thunder Mountain. Give a new Harley Davidson a spin with the on-site demo fleet, cheer on contestants vying to be Miss Thunder in the Rockies, or grab a hot dog at one of the vendors while you wait for the bands to take the stage. This year’s lineup includes Bret Michaels, Jackyl, and Blackberry Smoke. Fri-Mon 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
Touring on the heels of its eighth studio album, Southsiders, Atmosphere brings its signature live-instrument style of hip hop to the Mile High City. The duo of MC Sean “Slug” Daley and producer Anthony “Ant” Davis will deliver a performance stocked with fan favorites and some new tracks that will energize and engage the crowd. A lineup of underground rap acts including the Grouch & Eligh, Prof, and Dem Atlas rev up the night before Atmosphere hits the stage. Fri 6 p.m.
Spend Labor Day weekend tasting your way through the mountain town of Vail. This culinary festival brings forth the finest restaurants in town, including Sweet Basil, Flame, and more for an a-la-carte sampling. Other activities include community yoga and culinary games for kids. Wrap up the long weekend with a brunch of bites and pours as you stroll along Bridge Street. Fri 6-9 p.m.; Sat 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Mon 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
The Rocky Mountain Showdown: a football tradition that has divided the Centennial State for more than a century. While the University of Colorado and Colorado State University teams tackle each other on the field, fans have the chance to tackle hunger: Money collected at the game will benefit Feeding America food banks in Larimer and Boulder counties. Fri 7 p.m.
Keith Urban is one busy Australian. The four-time Grammy Award-winner, creator of five consecutive platinum albums, and judge on American Idol, Urban is cementing his position as one of the top country artists. Urban's high energy tunes often fuse lyrics about life and personal vices with acoustic melodies. Listen to tracks such as "Little Bit of Everything" and "We Were Us" (featuring Miranda Lambert) from the singer, songwriter, and guitarist's 2013 album, Fuse. Fri 7 p.m.
You won’t want to miss Phish’s three-concert summer stop. The quintessential modern jam band has been mastering its unique blend of rock, folk, and funk for nearly 30 years. Phish is out on tour with the band’s 12th studio album, Fuego—its first in five years. Wed-Fri 7:30 p.m.
You know the Tom Cruise, Jack Nicholson, and Demi Moore film from 1992 (written by Aaron Sorkin of The West Wing and The Social Network fame), but you might not know this: The script started as a Broadway hit. Spotlight Theatre marks its 50th production with this drama about a military trial that questions the Navy’s code of honor. Sat-Sat, times vary.
Spend Labor Day Weekend browsing the works of painters, jewelers, and other artisans while listening to jazz and blues musicians in the heart of downtown Denver. Enjoy the tunes of groups such as Laurie D and the Blues Babes, Flatirons Jazz Quintet, and Dotsero. Don’t miss the food trucks offering local bites and cocktails in Skyline Park's grassy picnic area. Sat 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sun 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Teach your kids about Colorado's native populations at this one-day festival. Watch the performance by Seven Falls Indian Dancers, sample traditional Native American foods, or encourage your little one to express themselves in the arts and crafts booth. Stop by one of the jewelers or statue carvers for a souvenir to remember the cultural celebration. Sat 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
What is almost as good as a safe full of cash? A safe full of bacon. Sniff your way through five clues to trace the path to safes filled with prizes including cash and a year supply of bacon. The first clue to the starting location will pop up Saturday on the Farmland Bacon Club website. Pickup bacon freebies and merchandise along the way to crack the final code in celebration of International Bacon Day. Sat 11:45 a.m.
—Photo courtesy of Farmland Foods
Return to the gnarly days of the ’80s with the outfits and tunes that made the decade so rad. Dig into your closet and pull out the spandex and legwarmers for this evening dance bash, where proceeds benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. A ticket buys admission, a free drink, and photo booth access. Sat 7 p.m.
Make your way to the mountains for Summit County’s summer culinary showcase. The festival will feature Keystone’s top restaurants, such as Ski Tip and the Ranch. Don’t miss Keystone Resort’s executive pastry chef Ned Archibald at his delicious dessert booth. Sun 11 a.m.-4 p.m.