Thrills for the week

Pet projects: Let your animal instincts lead you today--someone, possibly with a wet nose or leathery tongue, will be thankful you did. Two area no-kill shelters are throwing fundraisers to benefit their continued work in the animal community, and everyone's welcome. Cat lovers are invited to the Cat Care Society's '96 Cajun Convention, a family affair featuring that perennial Harold Stassen of the cat world, society mascot Cajun, who will preside at his own kissing booth. A cake walk, bake sale, games, entertainment and discounts at the Cajun's Closet thrift shop round out activities, which take place from noon to 4 at the shop, 5785 W. 6th Ave. Other animal lovers will want to hobnob with celebrity hosts and auctioneers--human ones--at the Maxfund's black-tie-optional Puttin' on the Max, to be held this evening at the Brown Palace Hotel, 17th St. and Broadway. Chow down--on human food--and dance to the Kool Kats; for information call 595-9481.

Sunday
October 20
Mulch it over: One look at the leaves piled up on your lawn will clue you in: Fall fell. But it's no problem, really--the folks at Denver Recycles, a local waste-management program working with the CSU Cooperative Extension, want to help. The organization suggests that digging leaves into your garden or compost heap or mulching them into your grass are the best ways to recycle the wretched refuse, but because it also acknowledges that the inundation is sometimes overwhelming, Denver Recycles assumes the composting duties by sponsoring an annual Denver Leafdrop, allowing city residents to drop off bagged leaves at the following six sites: Smiley Junior High School, John F. Kennedy High School, Sloan Lake Marina, Cranmer Park, Veteran's Park and the Denver Solid Waste Transfer Station at Quebec St. and S. Cherry Creek Dr. The sites will be open from 10 to 4 Sundays, through November 17; for details call 640-1678. Those seeking more specific information on home leaf recycling can call 640-5270 for advice.

Fully booked: In case you've begun to take books for granted and spend most of your free time with your nose buried in the World Wide Web, here's a breath of fresh air: Check out (figuratively, that is) Pages Through the Ages, an exhibition of antique treasures of bookmaking and typography now on display at the Vida Ellison Gallery of the Central Library, 10 W. 14th Ave. Pkwy. Taken from the library's Douglas Collection of Fine Printing, the exhibit, which runs through the end of October, features a series of books published by arts and crafts movement designer William Morris, a leaf from the Gutenberg Bible and other printed gems. The gallery is located on the museum's seventh floor.

Monday
October 21
Fun and games: It's a frightening thought, but now you can have your Monday Night Football and eat it, too. Whenever you want. A Rowdy Friends Bus Tour, featuring a forty-foot monster cruiser equipped with thirteen hands-on computers and two big-screen PC stations, is coming to town today to show off the new ABC's Monday Night Football CD-ROM game. Test the new three-dimensional football simulation--hosted by Frank Gifford, Al Michaels, Dan Dierdorf and others, just like the real thing--at Best Buy, 8682 Park Meadow Center Dr., Littleton, where the tour bus will be parked from 10 to 6 today. Then go home, or you'll miss the kickoff.

Tuesday
October 22
Everything in moderation: Are you among the sympathetic souls who think Halloween is getting to be, like, way too grownup and gory? Maybe so. Though the Non-Scary Haunted House at the Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys is specifically designed for tiny terrified tykes between the ages of 2 and 10, there's no reason why you wouldn't be welcome there, as well--and once you're there, nothing will drip on your face, scream at you or threaten to chop off your nose. Open from 10 to 4 daily except Mondays and from 1 to 4 Sundays, today through October 31, the easy-on-the-nerves ordeal includes special exhibits along with free pre-Halloween treats, a slightly creepy haunted trail and a museum treasure hunt; costumes are encouraged. Admission is $2 to $3 (children ages two to sixteen free, October 26 only); call 322-1053. The museum is located at 1880 Gaylord St.

Wednesday
October 23
Humble pie: Just an ordinary guy--or so he would have you believe--will drop by the newly huge, renovated triple-decker version of the Tattered Cover LoDo, 1628 16th St., today to entertain, discuss and hawk his recent book. At noon, famous trial lawyer Gerry Spence introduces his memoir, The Making of a Country Lawyer, in which he discusses his unassuming rural roots, as part of the downtown T.C.'s Professional Pursuits series. Later, at 7:30, liberal-baiting talk-show personality Ken Hamblin spouts rhetoric from his new treatise, Pick a Better Country: An Unassuming Colored Guy Speaks His Mind About America. Love him or leave him; for additional information about either event call 436-1070.

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