Draw the shades: A group of artists who believe in coloring between, around and outside the lines will be featured in Pencil Pushers, a show of colored-pencil drawings opening tonight at Core New Art Space, 1412 Wazee St. Contemporary takes by Linda Pickrell-Takata, Bill Amundson, Jerry Baker, Michael Burrows and Adam are complemented by an exhibit of works in the downstairs gallery by members of the Denver Chapter of the Colored Pencil Society; artwork by Andrew Dodge occupies Core's East Gallery. Attend a reception from 7 to 10; all shows remain at the gallery through June 16. Call 571-4831.
Ladies first: Front Range musicians Joanne DelCarpine, Maggie Simpson, Beth Quist and Julie Hoest all have something in common: They accompany themselves stylishly, and they all sing and write songs. Though each participates in different, far-ranging musical projects on her own, together they call themselves Gals With Guitars, and when they do, it's an occasion worth the wait. The gals will appear tonight at the Swallow Hill Music Hall, 1905 S. Pearl St., where they'll trade the spotlight beginning at 8. Then they go their separate ways again--until the next time. Tickets are $10 ($8 members); for information call 777-1003.
Out there: Out music outdoors is the delightfully unorthodox credo of the first annual Creative Music Works Festival, an eclectic daylong event that combines contemporary jazz, impro-visational music, blues and fusion and features an array of artists, including the Denver Public Schools City-Wide Jazz Combo, African percussionists of the Moyo Arts Ensemble and a nonstop sampling of fine area experimental musicians. The festival takes place downtown in Skyline Park, 16th Street Mall and Arapahoe St., today from 11 to 7; admission is as free as the music. For details call 477-3081.
Fair thee well: A pair of outdoor fairs will afford art lovers their pick of handmade items and art bargains this weekend while providing artists with a much-needed venue for their work. The Rocky Mountain Arts Festival, a family affair being held from 10 to 4 today and tomorrow at Four Mile Historic Park, 715 S. Forest St., features over 35 artisans selling jewelry, pottery, photography and more, as well as demonstrations, children's craft workshops, live music, storytelling, stagecoach rides and museum tours. Park admission ranges from $1.50 to $3.50; call 399-3087 or 399-1859. Meanwhile, fine artists in a number of disciplines--from painting to sculpture to printmaking--will hawk works at the Art Students League Summer Art Market, a function showcasing pieces by league faculty and students and invited artists. Attend the market from 10 to 5 today and tomorrow; the league is located at 200 Grant St. Call 778-6990.
Great hooks: New England singer-songwriter Bill Morrissey goes far beyond the call when it comes to being just that--he's renowned for the literary, place-oriented bent of his folksy musical storytelling. It's not much of a stretch to imagine Morrissey as a fiction writer, which he now is, as evidenced by the recent release of his first novel, Edson, by Knopf. Morrissey will celebrate another release--that of his seventh album, You'll Never Get to Heaven--tonight at 8 at the Bluebird Theater, 3317 E. Colfax. Tickets to the concert, sponsored by the Swallow Hill Music Association, range from $11 to $13; call 1-800-444-SEAT.
Older smoothie: You all know Junior--charming and rakish, Southern good looks, plays piano and sings like a much older guy? But what about Harry Connick Sr.? When Harry the First isn't hard at work as the New Orleans DA, he's happily wrapping his well-polished vocal chords around Cole Porter and Gershwin standards at the Crescent City's Maxwell's Toulouse Cabaret. Runs in the family, it seems. Now the elder Connick is taking his chops on the road, which brings him to Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Road in Boulder, tonight at 8. Admission ranges from $16 to $20; call 440-7666 or 830-TIXS.
All the muse that fits: Celebrating its twentieth anniversary, the Foothills Poets Festival gets under way today with an afternoon of workshops, a potluck dinner and an evening reading. Between 2:30 and 5 p.m., Richard Shelton of the University of Arizona will lead a creativity workshop, and Colorado Springs poet Lois Hayna will critique student poetry ($5 per workshop). The potluck, with birthday cake provided, follows at 5:30, and Linda Hogan joins Shelton and Hayna for a reading at 7 ($5 admission). The center is located in Golden, at 809 15th St.; call 465-0883 for reservations. Poetic language of another sort will be celebrated during Bloomsday '96, a somewhat annual marathon reading of James Joyce's Ulysses at the Wynkoop Brewing Company, 1634 18th St. Drop in for some bloomin' fun anytime between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. as organized groups work their way through, chapter by chapter. Call 297-2700 for more information.