This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

Thursday, February 20How's the weather? Admit it: Your life revolves around that question -- and that's one that reason Bryan Yeaton of the Mt. Washington Observatory in New Hampshire is such a popular guy. Yeaton, who travels the nation in his "WeatherMobile" (actually, a sturdy Subaru Outback packed with weather instruments), will make a stop today at the Boulder Public Library, 1000 Canyon Boulevard, Boulder, to present Whether the Weather, a mix of demonstrations, discussion and visuals describing where the heck weather comes from and how weather predictions are made. Demos will be offered in the north parking lot at 3 and 5 p.m., with a formal slide talk sandwiched in between at 4 in the auditorium. Both events are free; for information, call 303-441-4144.

Friday, February 21Speaking of weather, ours hasn't exactly been conducive to getting a suntan lately. And unless you've got the means and spare time for an island vacation in the sun, there'll be no lolling on the beach for you this February. Not to worry: the Denver Brass has a plan. The popular horn ensemble has invited local steel-drum band Pan Jumbies and the Island Dancers to join it on stage for Caribbean Rhythms, an aural cruise guaranteed to de-stress every muscle in your body. As promised by the title, lazy calypso and reggae beats will rule the evening, which starts at 7:30 at Boettcher Concert Hall, 14th and Curtis streets. Admission ranges from $12 to $39; for tickets, call 303-832-4676.

Jazz vocal veteran Marlena Shaw has never been a purist, and she's been all the more delightful a singer because of it. While her jazz chops were strong enough to catch the ear of Count Basie (she sang with Basie's big band in the '60s), she's also had hits in the R&B vein, and she still handles it all like a pro. Local audiences are in for a rare treat when Shaw performs tonight at 7:30 at the Lakewood Cultural Center, 470 South Allison Parkway, Lakewood, with the rest of her quartet, which includes pianist Larry Fuller, bassist Jeff Chambers and drummer Eddie Marshall; for tickets, $19.95 to $23, call 303-987-7875 or log on to www.lakewood.org.

Saturday, February 22Ever dragged the kids along for an afternoon of sore-footed torture at the home and garden show or the antique expo? It's time for payback, moms and dads! At the Radio Disney All About Kids Expo, it's the kids -- particularly those in the three-to-twelve age bracket -- who get to take the lead and drag youall over kingdom come. And don't let anyone hear you whining that you're hungry and tired and have to go to the potty: This event's got staying power. In addition to the ongoing pony and llama rides, the petting zoo, the maze, the clown workshops and the craft projects, barely pubescent sister act Triple Image will be performing live music twice daily. Attend the expo today from 10 to 6 or tomorrow from 10 to 4 at the Colorado Convention Center, 700 14th Street; admission is $10 for adults and free for up to two kids ages twelve and under with a paying adult ($3 for additional kids). Proceeds benefit the Children's Hospital; for details, log on to www.all-about-kids.org.

There'll also be plenty of kidstuff at the Buckhorn Exchange's annual Buffalo Bill's Birthday Celebration and Old West Rendezvous, a Cody carousal featuring everything from a live yak calf to the always entertaining, multi-mustachioed Buffalo Bill look-alike contest, which attracts Cody wannabes from across the nation. Along with Cody memorabilia, Old West tunes courtesy of cowboy duos Roz Brown & Bill Barwick and Liz Masterson & Sean Blackburn, stagecoach rides and more, the Buckhorn will be serving up a smorgasbord of buffalo dishes, from burgers to chicken-fried steak. Enjoy the fun, family-style or as a grownup, from 11 this morning until 10 tonight; the Buckhorn, touted as Denver's oldest restaurant, is at 1000 Osage Street. Call 303-534-9505.

Sunday, February 23

Tea for three: They'll be pouring on the Earl Grey, along with a little history lesson, at today's Wyman Historic District Progressive Tea, a traveling high tea hosted by three Wyman neighborhood bed-and-breakfast inns: Adagio, 1430 Race Street; Castle Marne, 1572 Race Street; and Holiday Chalet, 1475 High Street. In addition to the crumpets in historic settings, Denver historian Tom Noel will speak during the afternoon; sip and listen today from 1 to 4 p.m. Tickets are $12, and reservations are required; for information, call 303-321-9975.

Monday, February 24

Unlike Robert Crais (see "Elvis Lives," this page), mystery writer Andrew Vachss has always been as dark as they come, writing in an updated yet classic noir style that doesn't dally with crime's inherent ugliness. If you're fond of traveling through Jim Thompson's twisted realm, you'll love Vachss, whose real-life professions have always had a forensic edge (he's been a social worker, a prison director and a lawyer, among other things); he reads from his latest book, The Getaway Man, tonight at 7:30 at the Tattered Cover Book Store, 2955 East First Avenue. Call 303-322-7727.

Tuesday, February 25

Heads will be in the clouds when the Banff Mountain Film Festival comes to the Boulder Theater, 2032 14th Street, Boulder. The fest will feature Banff's best films of 2002, including the climbing epic Vertical Frontier; Escape Over the Himalayas: Tibet's Children on Their Journey into Exile, a harrowing real-life drama from Germany; Grand Prize winner The Second Step: Warren Macdonald's Epic Journey to Federation Peak; and Best Short Film Front Range Freaks [Part 1]: Urban Ape, in which Boulder climber Timmy O'Neill pulls a Spiderman by rappelling off buildings in his home town. Two separate programs will be screened for the region's outdoorsy crowd tonight and tomorrow at 7:30 p.m.; for tickets, $13, call 303-786-7030 or log on to www.bouldertheater.com.

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