Nobody knows for sure how many die-hard Broncos fans are going to show up at Invesco Field at 11 this morning and tomorrow morning for the team's inaugural Denver Broncos Fan Fair. What is certain is that every current player and coach, as well as cheerleaders and some notable alumni, will be there to sign autographs, pose for photos, answer questions and generally indulge Broncomania. Fans will be able to watch the entire Super Bowl XXXII broadcast, have their photos taken with the Lombardi Trophy, join on-field games and contests, and form "huddles" that pick apart everything from the salary cap to sports medicine. The faithful can also pepper local sports-media types with questions about their predictions for the Broncos' upcoming season, or sit in on a referee seminar. There's also a special KidZone for youngsters.
According to Amy Marolf of the Broncos' marketing department, only da Bears, out of all the NFL teams, have tried this kind of fan-appreciation day, so the players and back-office folks are curious to see how it turns out.
"We're hoping to have people crawling all over the place," says Marolf. But to make sure that adoring fans don't put the orange-and-blue crush on Shannon Sharpe and his teammates, the times for autograph sessions and other appearances are being kept strictly hush-hush.
Tickets ($15 each day or $25 for a weekend pass for adults; $7 each day or $10 for a weekend pass for children twelve and under) are available through Ticketmaster (303-830-TIXS, www.ticketmaster.com) and the Invesco Field ticket office.
For more information, visit www.denverbroncos.com/fanfair. -- Hart Van Denburg
Northwest Denver makes a green scene
Summer's most pleasing adjunct to the house tour -- the garden tour -- is enjoying its peak this month. As the region's finest backyard Edens reach a crescendo of early-season bloom, many swing their gates open to give others a brief peep at paradise. And predictably, in a year when xeriscape and native plantings are all the rage -- or, to be exact, a necessity -- they will be the focus of the Enchanted Gardens of Northwest Denver tour. The walkabout, an annual benefit for the Conflict Center, a nonprofit that offers violence-prevention programs, stretches from the new formal yet waterwise Highland Garden Village plantings at the former Elitch Gardens site to a five-home Eliot Street swath of community-created low-water plots. Other highlights on the eighteen-garden tour, which takes place today from 9 to 2, include the Denver Puppet Theater's all-container garden, which was planted with a focus on kids, as well as a borderless prairie garden and a feng-shui-inspired outdoor environment filled with water music and Southwest decor. Admission is $10; for tickets, stop by the Conflict Center, 4040 Tejon Street, or log on to www.conflictcenter.org. -- Susan Froyd