Ha, ha--you're no fool. At least you won't be once you've read local author Jamie Grenney's Pranks 101: The Complete Guide to Practical Jokes from cover to cover. A cheeky tome covering everything from basic short-sheeting to Saran Wrap on the toilet seat, the self-published book is the perfect April Fool's Day companion. Grenney will be signing copies today from noon to 1 at the Tattered Cover LoDo, 1628 16th St.; he promises not to use disappearing ink. For details, call 303-436-1070.
In the world of tutus and toe shoes, fairy tales rule. That's the only way to explain a weekend that finds the Colorado Ballet re-awakening The Sleeping Beauty at the Buell Theatre, 14th and Curtis streets, while the Boulder Ballet has a ball with Cinderella at Macky Auditorium on the CU-Boulder campus. You know the plots--these are stories you can follow in your sleep. Beauty will be performed tonight at 7:30, at 2 and 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and again at 2 p.m. Sunday; for tickets, ranging from $15 to $52, call 303-830-TIXS. Cinderella twirls at 8 tonight and tomorrow and 2 p.m. Sunday; for tickets, $8 to $35, call 303-449-1343.
Nothing's sacred--except maybe a goddess or two--to Vox Femina, a multi-media feminist troupe that swaggeringly bills itself as a "multi-passionate performance tribe of radical women" and never fails to live up to the description. In their latest piece, Y2K-Y Jellymamas Dancin' the Apocalypso, the ladies of Vox single out everything from men's-movement drum-beater Robert Bly to the coming of the millennium. Performances take place today, tomorrow and next Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Old Main Theater, CU-Boulder campus, and April 16 at the Mercury Cafe, 2199 California St.; tickets are $10-$15 at the door.
At the heart of downtown Golden's Easter festivities for families, which include an Easter egg hunt, Newfoundland dog-cart rides and other kid-oriented activities, the newly spiffed-up Clear Creek History Park celebrates its grand opening today from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with live hoedown music, a flotilla of 1870s cavalry re-enactors, kids' crafts, wagon rides and frontier skills demonstrations. Located at 11th and Arapahoe in Golden, the living-history park features original nineteenth-century log cabins, a blacksmith shop, smokehouse and other buildings of a bygone era; in addition, presentations will be made by period-dressed interpreters. Admission is $2 to $3 (children under six admitted free); call 303-278-3557.
Ever since banjoist Bela Fleck first cheekily fired up his plectrum on Chick Corea's Spain, trading virtuosic bluegrass licks for the electrified fusion kind, we've been nuts about him and his band, the Flecktones, one of those anomalies of American music that never fail to delight. It's partly because Fleck and his transcendent rhythm section, the fabulous Wooten brothers, achieve the unorthodox in the most matter-of-fact way, as if it were just meant to be. And we suppose it is. Fleck performs tonight at 8 at the Paramount Theatre, 1621 Glenarm Pl.; for tickets, $23, call 303-830-TIXS or log on to www.uniconcerts.com.
The heck with football--it's time for futbol. Our major-league soccer team, the Colorado Rapids, began their season March 20 in Los Angeles but won't play at home for another week. They want to make it up to you--and maybe attract some new fans--by hosting a free Meet the Rapids Day, today from 2 to 5 p.m. at Mile High Stadium, where the real kicks officially start up April 10. In tandem with the annual event, during which the faithful can chat with players, take snapshots and get autographs, the Rapids will offer Colorado's Biggest Easter Egg Hunt, which starts at 2 right on the field at Mile High, and introduce the new Rapids Fun Zone, an interactive soccer theme park where enthusiasts will be able to test their skills before games this season. Call 303-299-1570.
Italian seems to be the latest food fad, and no one's wasting any time wondering why--it's a cuisine that seems to mix the elegant with the rustic in hearty, comforting and tantalizing ways. With that in mind, Panzano--a sleek trattoria tucked away beneath the new Monaco Hotel--will seize the day by serving an Easter brunch quite unlike any other in town, featuring tables laden with spring delicacies prepared in a distinctly Italian manner. The Northern Italian Holiday Feast will be served from 10 to 3 today; the meal costs $80 for a table of four ($15 each additional person). Not an Easter kind of person? No problem. The restaurant will also serve an Italian Passover Feast on Tuesday, featuring the traditional Haggadah reading and a mouthwatering pareve menu, priced at $60 per person. Panzano is at 909 17th St.; space is limited, so reservations are a must for either meal. Call 303-296-3525.
It used to be you went to the library and you'd disappear into the stacks. Bent for hours over those little card-catalogue drawers with a stubby little pencil in hand, you'd lose entire afternoons trying to hunt down the perfect thread, one book at a time. Truth is, in the computer age, the experience hasn't changed so much as it's become centralized: Now when you go to the library, you find a terminal and get lost in the Internet, sometimes not emerging until...hours later? Days? It's not a promise, but the Denver Public Library's WebWise Workshops, offered evenings in April at various metro-area locations, might be able to help you and your family learn to speed up the search process. Along the way, you'll receive safety and navigation tips, learn to find fun sites and steer clear of the rotten ones. Interested parents and children can register in advance for workshops, offered Mondays at Ross-Barnum Library, 3570 W. 1st Ave. (303-935-1891); Tuesdays at Denver Central Library, 14th and Broadway (303-640-6200) or Ross-Cherry Creek Library, 303 Milwaukee St. (303-331-4016); and Thursdays at Ross-University Hills Library, 4310 E. Amherst Ave. (303-757-2714). Admission is free.
Paris in springtime: Catch a vicarious thrill with Paris on Film, a seven-week film series at the Denver Art Museum programmed in conjunction with a new touring Toulouse-Lautrec blockbuster that opens in the museum's galleries April 10. Just as Toulouse-Lautrec caught the soul of Parisian nightlife in his work, the represented filmmakers bring the city's avant-garde yet cosmopolitan essence to the screen in a myriad of expressive ways. They include Robert Bresson, Jean-Luc Godard and Rene Clair, whose surrealist shorts The Crazy Ray/Paris qui Dort, Entr'acte and Rien que les Heures kick off the fest tonight at 7. The series continues on Tuesdays through May 18 in the DAM's C-Level Adventures in Art Center. Because seating is limited, series tickets, $35 to $40, are recommended; for reservations call 303-640-4433. Individual admission is $6 to $7 per screening; for information call 303-640-7910.
Books and trivia are best friends: If you've spent your whole life with your nose buried in a book, you're going to know about a lot of unexpected things most people never even think about. It's that quality that makes Lit Wit, a literary trivia party hosted by Capitol Hill Books, seem so friendly: A seasoned panel of book lovers will field book-related trivia questions from the audience, as long as they're confined to issues of author names, book titles and fictional characters. The event, which takes place tonight at 7 at the Mercury Cafe, 2199 California, will raise funds for the Reach Out and Read early literacy program; in addition to the $5 admission, donations of clean, neat children's books will be accepted. Call 303-837-0700.