Lupus is a chronic, potentially life-threatening inflammatory disease that affects various parts of the body. Not funny at all. But you know what is funny?: Laughs for Lupus. Keeping with the laughter-is-the-best-medicine approach, Comedy Works presents Gary Gulman, the popular star of Last Comic Standing, as well as Cory Kahaney, Dan Naturman and Denver's own Kevin Fitzgerald at 8 p.m. tonight at Teikyo Loretto Heights Theater, 3001 South Federal Boulevard, in a fundraiser to benefit the Lupus Foundation of Colorado. Tickets, $25 to $75, are available by calling 303-830-TIXS or by logging on to www.ticketmaster.com. Take that, immune complexes.
Friday, October 28
"Oh, my God. It's Friday the 28th, Halloween is nigh upon us, and I still have so much to do! There's candy to buy and perverse lawn adornments to arrange, and if I don't set up a chair in the pumpkin patch right now, there's no freaking way I'm ever going to see the Great Pumpkin!" Hey, buddy, why not relieve some of that pre-holiday stress with a nice, brisk fall run? Tonight at 6 p.m., Washington Park will explode with costumed joggers partaking in the sixth annual Scream Scram, a 5K Halloween Run/Walk complete with a hundred-meter Spooky Sneak for kids. Runners are invited to bring their four-legged friends -- heck, even three-legged ones, if they're mobile -- and everyone's encouraged to don Halloween outfits and raise money to benefit the Colorado Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. The entry fee for the Scram is $23 for adults ($27 on race day) and $15 for children twelve and younger and seniors sixty and older ($19 on race day). For more information, call 303-694-2030 or visit www.active.com.
And who needs pumpkins? Bring on the skulls. The opening reception for El Día de los Muertos cuts loose tonight from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Chicano Humanities and Arts Council, 772 Santa Fe Drive. The free annual event will feature the Teoilhuikatl Aztec dancers, face-painting and displays of art. The guaranteed Technicolor exhibit runs through November 5. For more information, call 303-571-0440.
Saturday, October 28
I know what you're thinking: Swalloween sounds like the name of an incredibly timely porn flick. But Swalloween is really a folk- and roots-style concert put on by Swallow Hill Music Association and KCUV/AM 1510 tonight at 8 p.m. at Swallow Hill, 71 East Yale Avenue. The lineup includes the Reals, a group that draws on influences from Americana to gospel; Zebra Junction, a dynamic duo that uses a variety of instruments to churn out everything from folk to jazz; and banjo savant Armando Zuppa. Tickets, $9 each, are available by calling 303-777-1003 or by going to www.swallowhill.com. Porno movie, indeed. Can't people play good, old-fashioned music without you twisting it into something sinister? Sicko.
Sunday, October 30
The history of the University of Colorado Film Studies Department is impressive: Since its establishment in the late '50s, the school has blossomed into one of CU's signature departments. Naropa University's Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics is equally storied: Founded in 1974 by Beat legends Allen Ginsberg and Anne Waldman, the Boulder school has long served as an intellectual haven, attracting some of the most innovative, creative and completely wacked-out minds in the country. So it was only a matter of time before the two programs teamed up. Film Poetics: A Meeting of Visual Minds, premiering at 7 p.m. tonight at Naropa's Performing Arts Center, 2130 Arapahoe Avenue in Boulder, marks the inaugural collaboration between the two schools and features films by undergraduates and graduates of Naropa and CU. The show is free; for more information, call 303-245-4630.
Monday, October 31
Looking for some fun on Halloween night without having to deal with all those little trick-or-treaters? Why not stop by the Mercury Cafe? Committed to the exploration of food, art, politics and community, the Merc set up shop in its current digs fifteen years ago today, on the spookiest day of the year, so it only makes sense to head over to 2199 California Street for the 2005 celebration. On the menu is the final performance of Allied Witches Riding the Nightmare ($10), as well as a "Somewhere Over the Mambo" presentation by Cabaret Diosa (also $10) for those who want to cut a rug . The chefs and bartenders are preparing all sorts of "potions" for the evening, and prizes will be awarded for the best costumes; visit www.mercurycafe.com for a complete rundown.
Tuesday, November 1
At 7 p.m. on November 1, 1955, United Airlines Flight 629 exploded in the sky near Longmont, mere minutes after departing Stapleton International Airport on its way to Portland, killing all 44 passengers on board. It turned out that John Gilbert Graham had planted a bomb in his mother's suitcase, part of a grisly scheme to murder her and collect her life insurance; two years later, he was sentenced to death for the crime. Tonight at 7 p.m., KRMA-TV/Channel 6 will show the original production Murder at Mid Air to mark the tragic event. Produced by Don Kinney and featuring historic footage and interviews with some of the people closest to the accident and subsequent investigation, the documentary, which originally aired ten years ago, has been given a new introduction by Kinney in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of the tragedy. Learn more at www.rmpbs.org.