SubscribeAvailable Now
Culture

8 Free Things to Do in and Around Denver This April

They say the best things in life are free: sword-making competitions, cross-stitch collaborations, and six more exciting events happening this month.

 •  

Creative Nations Conversation | April 1

There’s nothing like listening to bright, creative souls hash out life’s questions, big and small. At Dairy Arts Center, executive director Melissa Fathman and Denver skateboard-slash-street-art icon Walt Pourier are hosting a series of scintillating talks with innovative Native artists. This one, which will run from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. and feature Navajo muralist, printmaker, and graffiti artist JayCee Beyale, will touch on indigenous and Buddhist modes of meaning-making. Register for the Zoom events online. 

Farm to Bus Chocolate Tasting & Artisanal Market | April 3

The headliner of sorts at this one-day-only market (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.) is Moksha Chocolate, which turns ethically sourced cacao from Belize, Peru, and beyond into specialty chocolates, some with CBD. But the tasty treats don’t stop there: Guatemalan-inspired hot sauce, goat milk caramel sauce, homemade pasta, homemade fermented bread, and local honey are all sample-able. Music DJ’d by The Vibrarian (who also happens to be a beekeeper) will ring spring in right. Register for tickets online; 2746 47th Street

Local AF Pop-Up Market | Each weekend

Want retro fanny packs? Denim boots? Vegan candles? Sustainably-raised Colorado beef? Artisan potato chips? Hand-block printed textiles? Colorado merchants are crafting all that and more—and they’ll all be available for perusal and purchase in the Dairy Block’s heated alley. Shop to the beat of live music and feel good about supporting local small businesses. Friday, 3 p.m.–8 p.m; Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; register online; 1800 Wazee Street

April in Paris | April 15-April 29

High-brow opera meets golden age television in this digital performance by renowned mezzo soprano Catherine Cook. Accompanied by Opera Colorado chorus master Sahar Nouri, Cook embodies Julia Child, adopts the stylings of Paris cabaret performers, and much more, with lyrics in both French and English. The hourlong program, produced by Opera Colorado and Rocky Mountain Public Media, is available to reserve on demand online after registering for a free Opera Colorado account.

Stitching the Situation | April 17

Every day, Heather Schulte makes a new cross-stitch panel to document, memorialize, and grieve new COVID-19 cases and deaths across the country. What began as a one-woman project has expanded into a community effort—since June 2020, Schulte has produced take-home kits for Coloradans to join her textile efforts. Now, East Window, a Boulder contemporary art space that opened in May 2020 and is currently exhibiting six new Gregg Deal paintings, is hosting an outdoor community stitching session with Schulte. Pick up a needle and thread alongside Schulte, no experience necessary, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Read more about the project online and send Heather an email to register; 4949 Broadway, Unit 102–B

Ice Bear Challenge Bladesmithing Competition | April 18

Crafts are increasingly becoming spectator sports. There’s The Great British Bake Off, The Great Pottery Throw Down, and, in Denver, the most badass iteration of the genre yet: the second annual Ice Bear Challenge bladesmithing competition. At Salvage Design Center in Overland, hobbyist sword makers will go head to head to forge their versions of a Scandinavian Seax, a fighting knife popular with the Vikings. The finished products will be judged on sharpness, durability, edge retention, and sheer beauty. Food trucks and local goods vendors complete the experience. 8 a.m.–5 p.m; 1200 W. Evans Avenue

History Colorado Tesoro Lecture Series: January Moon | April 18

The stories of our past are the stories of our present are the stories of our future—and there are always more stories to tell, more stories to hear. In an upcoming installment of History Colorado’s virtual lecture series (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.), historian and former National Park Service manager Jerome Greene will recount the January 1879 struggle between imprisoned Northern Cheyenne people and U.S. forces at Antelope Creek—over which shone a full moon—and the legacy of the violence of that night. Get tickets for the lecture ahead of time online.

Meeting the Goddess: A Group Exhibition | From April 23

Artemesia Galerie, a new art space in Lincoln Park, takes its name from three intersecting sources: the Greek goddess of the moon, the hunt, and fertility; a 17th century woman painter who has been posthumously lauded as one of the geniuses of the Baroque era; and a genus of ‘witchy’ plants like wormwood and mugwort. It’s fitting, then, that one of its first exhibitions brings together local and far-flung artists’ unconventional interpretations of “the divine feminine.” 836 Santa Fe Drive

Editors' Picks

Newsletters

Keep me up to date on the latest trends and happenings around Denver. 5280 has a newsletter for everyone.

Sign Up