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Staza Stone of Rainbow Militia. Photo by Martha Wirth

17 Free (Or Super Cheap) Virtual Things to Do This May

From online classes to virtual beer tastings—and even live circus performances—there are plenty of free or donation-based happenings to keep you entertained at home.

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N. Scott Momaday: Words From a Bear Viewing & Discussion | May 1
Witness the stunning narrative of Native American life on the plains collide with a vibrant glimpse into the psyche of Kiowa author and Pulitzer Prize winner N. Scott Momaday in the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s presentation of the cinematic biography, N. Scott Momaday: Words From a Bear. Screen the documentary film for free through PBS, and join for an intimate Zoom discussion and audience Q&A with director Jeffrey Palmer about the prolific author’s life, work, and gift of storytelling. Free; 7–8 p.m.; RSVP online by noon on May 1 to receive a link to the live Zoom broadcast

Virtual First Friday | May 1
Good news: You can still get your First Friday fix from the comfort of your own home. Join the Art District on Santa Fe’s Facebook watch party to catch virtual gallery tours, one-on-one talks with artists, tours of at-home art studios, and much more. Free; 5–7 p.m.; Find more information on the livestream and participating artists and galleries online 

(MORE: Take a Virtual First Friday Art Tour)

Denver Beer Co. Happy Hour | May 1
Craving a springtime afternoon on a patio, a cold beer in your hand, and a dose of human interaction? It might be a little bit longer before you can indulge, but Denver Beer Co. is bringing you the next best thing. Grab one of their brews from a taproom—or simply sip whatever you’ve got at home—and join for a virtual happy hour and tasting of some of their select beers (including their latest 8 O’clock Howl American Pilsner), as well as a discussion on their process and recipe inspiration, and an open Q&A. Free; 4–5 p.m.; Find more information on tasting selection, ordering, special guests, and how to connect to the happy hour online 

Singleling | May 1
Whether you’re quarantined with your partner or single and currently unable to mingle, we could all probably use a laugh about universal relationships woes. Tune in to Singleling, the podcast-turned-live-show series, featuring comedians and storytellers alike sharing amusing tales of their love lives. Audience members will have the chance to compete for prizes as well (most creative cocktail can score you an easy win!) as well as send in relationship questions to be answered by an expert panel. Free; 6–7:15 p.m.; Register online to receive a Zoom link

Rocky Mountain Virtual Music Festival | May 1, 8
Live concerts might be a distant dream, but the Colorado music scene is still stepping up to bring you fresh local sounds. Tune in each Friday for all-day, multi-genre lineups of musicians and other artists from around the state and nation. This month’s first set will include Sara Niemietz of Postmodern Jukebox, a pre-recorded Red Rocks set from Float Like A Buffalo, and even a live painting session from Sarah Mount. Free; 10 a.m.–10:15 p.m.; Find more information on lineup and how to stream online

Photo courtesy of Denver Dumb Friends League

Dumb Friends League’s Virtual Furry Scurry | May 2
Your pup has probably been stoked about getting more walks since you’ve been stuck at home. Luckily, Colorado’s favorite dog walk is still happening virtually, too, so you can help homeless pets by going on a walk anywhere, at any time on Saturday. Tune in to the livestream, participate in interactive contests, and join the rest of the community on their walks through social media. Register before May 2 to score some swag, access to a virtual marketplace with vendor deals, and a ticket to the post-event party once we’re allowed to convene again. Free, or $45 for adults to register before May 2 ($25 for kids); anytime; Find more information on registration and participation online  

Rainbow Militia’s Rainbow Ruckus | May 2
Denver-based circus collective Rainbow Militia has partnered with more than 70 local musicians and circus performers to bring a mashup of music, aerial dance, acrobatics, fire dancing, and much more from their living rooms to yours. And while you marvel in the variety show of gravity-defying stunts and mesmerizing magic, you can also feel good about a donation going directly to the local artistic community. Pay what you can; 4–5:30 p.m.; Donate online to receive a Zoom link for the show

Virtual Baking Club | May 3, 10, 17, 24 
Anyone else stress eating (and stress baking) lately? Join the club—literally. The Long I Pie Shop launched a weekly virtual baking club where you can tune in to a live-streamed baking class to learn tricks of the trade and recipes for mouth-watering delights like homemade Oreos, cornbread with salty honey butter, and of course, the perfect pie. Free; 1–2 p.m.; DM your email address to the Long I Pie on Instagram (@thelongipie) to receive info for the weekly livestream 

Photo courtesy of From the Hip Photo

Stanley Marketplace’s Virtual & Curbside Cinco de Mayo Celebration | May 5 
You can still go all-out for your Cinco de Mayo celebrations, thanks to Stanley Marketplace’s lineup of festivities, kicking off with a Facebook Live performance at 4 p.m. with dancers from Raíces de Mi Tierra, and live tunes on the Spanish guitar from Tito Malega on Comida’s Instagram TV (or straight from their patio, if you’re picking up curbside). If you want to splurge for some proper fare, snag a discounted crowler or bomber from Cheluna Brewing Company and a curbside meal kit from Comida. Or if you want to go the homemade route, don’t miss a virtual class from Create Cooking School on how to make your own celebratory classic margarita and crispy shrimp tacos with pico de gallo. Free; 4 p.m.; Find more information on schedule, takeout deals, and livestreams online 

Denver Art Museum’s Untitled: Creative Fusions at Home | May 15–17
The museum’s virtual adaptation of their quarterly “Untitled” series takes inspiration from its Natural Forces: Winslow Homer and Frederic Remington exhibition for this month’s theme, “Unearthing Place”: an examination of the Western landscape and themes of the American West through the perspectives of myriad heritages and cultures. Featured artists Becky Waring Steele and Libby Barbee have curated a three-episode online variety show including music, film, poetry, and even DIY-art adventures. Free; 7 p.m.; Find more information on artists and streaming instructions online 

Five Points Jazz Festival | May 16
Celebrate the rich culture and history of Denver’s Five Points neighborhood—once known as the Harlem of the West—with the virtual rendition of the 16th annual Jazz Festival. Join for an eclectic mix of swingin’ sounds, standup comedy, slam poetry, and more. Free; 6–8 p.m.; Find more information online 

Sofar Sounds Virtual Concerts | through May 31
Sofar Sounds—the surprise concert platform—has made a niche out of creating intimate concert experiences for fans. And just because we’re stuck at home doesn’t mean that has to change. The collective has curated a cozy online library for these strange times, full of dozens of past sets performed in Denver for you to head to anytime you need a music fix. Free; anytime; Find previous video archives online 

Spectra Art Space Online | through May 10
Spectra Art Space is offering something nearly every day of the week to get those creative juices flowing, and support Denver’s artistic community at the same time. Tune in for free virtual art classes, art auctions, zodiac sessions, artist interviews, and much more. Free; Find more information on daily events and times online 

Cleo Parker Robinson Dance: Cyber Dance | through May 11
As Cleo Parker Robinson Dance approaches its 50th anniversary, the beloved dance institution has created a one-stop shop of educational classes and training activities for anyone to get movin’ and groovin’ while stuck at home. Select from a trove of pre-recorded or livestream classes, ranging from any age or ability level, covering genres like hip hop, contemporary, jazz, and more. Pick your price; Find more information on pre-recorded options and daily class schedule online  

Voodoo Comedy Online Classes | through May 30
Whether you’re looking to test the comedy waters or sharpen your skills, Voodoo Comedy has adapted their educational offerings for you to dig into, right from home. Take classes on improv, joke-writing, standup, and more (with classes for various age groups as well) from some of the industry’s finest. $10, or donate what you can; Find more information on daily class schedule online 

Photo by Scott Dressel-Martin

Denver Botanic Gardens Virtual Tours | through May 31
Spring is blooming, but our favorite floral haven is off-limits at the moment. Fortunately, you can explore all of the Denver Botanic Gardens’ grounds with the curated video tours, or choose from virtual tours through the Garden Navigator site, pre-created by staff—or even build you own adventure through the Gardens to see what’s budding right now. Free; anytime; Find more information online 

Historic Denver’s Photo Contest | through May 31
What better way to get some fresh air then to step out and snap some photos of your favorite spot in Denver? Each year, Historic Denver hosts a photo contest to celebrate National Historic Preservation Month. This year’s theme asks Denverites to delve into the unknown stories of the city—whether that’s a hidden gem of architecture, public art, or a favorite community gathering space (or perhaps the lack of gathering happening there now, as we live through this historic moment). Winners will be awarded a prize, and photos will be highlighted on various channels as well as published in Historic Denver News. Free; accepting submissions May 1–31; Email submissions to sstrand@historicdenver.org, or find more information online

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