While author and former Crusade for Justice member Ernesto Vigil's first-hand account The Crusade for Justice: Chicano Militancy and the Government's War on Dissent is a look back at a notable page in Denver history of the 1960s, the book doesn't linger there: His profile of Crusade founder Corky Gonzales and the workings of the militant civil rights organization, which draws on FBI documents only recently made available, points the way to social controversies that remain alive today. Vigil will discuss and sign the book tonight at 7:30 at the Tattered Cover LoDo, 1628 16th St.; for details call 303-436-1070.
Boulder's Colorado Dance Festival continues in an exotic vein this week when it presents Group Petit la Croix, a Bay Area ensemble of traditional Afro-Haitian dancers and musicians. The group's fiery rhythms and cultural dances range from the traditional ceremonial steps to the more joyful choreography of the carnival; they'll perform both at 8 tonight and tomorrow night at the Boulder Theater, 2030 14th St., Boulder. For tickets, $22 to $30, call 303-786-7030. For information call 303-442-7666 or log on to www.coloradodance.org.
The AT&T LoDo Music Festival, now a summer fixture in lower downtown, has gotten so big it's had to take a hike--but just a short one. The two-day fest, featuring 33 acts on four stages, moves a couple of blocks over this year from its original site to the Ballpark Neighborhood, bounded by Blake, Market, 20th and 22nd streets, in order to accommodate crowds that just won't quit. Music starts this evening at 5, leading up to performances by the BoDeans and They Might Be Giants before shutting down at midnight; headlining tomorrow's schedule, which runs from 3 to midnight, are the Violent Femmes, Cowboy Mouth and Medeski Martin and Wood--and that's just a sampling of the whole roster. Admission is $12 daily in advance ($15 at the gate), and ample parking will be available for $5 in the Coors Field main lot; enter festival grounds at 20th and Blake streets. Call 1-800-965-4827 or log on to www.ticketweb.com.
There'll be sports memorabilia and interactive sports challenges and sports-activity centers galore--all under one rolling roof--when the Sports Illustrated for Kids Roadtrip, an athletics extravaganza on wheels--pulls into the Super Kmart parking lot, 9401 E. Arapahoe Road in Greenwood Village, today from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and tomorrow from noon to 6. A kind of three-dimensional, experiential version of the kids-only sports rag, the bus's local stop will also include demos by the Team Yomega yo-yo pros, celebrity appearances and a chance to compete in the Kmart Kids Race Against Drugs, a free mini-race-car spin with a message. In addition, kids attending will be able to drop off contributions for a book drive benefiting local Boys and Girls Clubs; for more information call 1-212-522-2666 or log on to www.sikids.com.
Who doesn't love a parade? In this case, the bands are stationary, but the music played will be right out of the marching-band hall of fame at the annual Wind Band Festival, featuring the Denver Concert Band, Denver Municipal Band, Colorado Honor Band and the 4th Artillery Regimental Band in the open air of Clement Park, at Pierce and Bowles in Lakewood. Bring your blankets and picnics around 6 p.m.--admission is free. For information call 303-83-MUSIC or log on to www.denverconcertband.org.
A stalwart of Boulder's new-agey Buddhist clans, the Naropa Institute is celebrating its silver anniversary all summer long. But one of the season's high points comes tonight when composer Philip Glass performs his "Etudes" and other works for solo piano at Naropa at 25: A Celebration in Concert, which also features a host of institute regulars, including poet Anne Waldman, composer Bill Douglas, choreographer Barbara Dilley and many others. The concert begins at 8 at the Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Rd., Boulder; for tickets, $25, call 303-786-7030 or 303-440-7666.
Here's one accordionist who hangs out in high places: Guy Klucevsek, in town for a residency at the Colorado Dance Festival, raises the artistic worth of the common squeezebox with all the assurance of an Astor Piazzolla. Klucevsek, who's composed contemporary works on the lowly instrument for numerous choreographers and musical ensembles, also performs alone; tonight he'll pump it up to benefit KGNU radio and the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art beginning at 7:30 at BMoCA, 1750 13th St., Boulder. Admission ranges from $12 to $15; call 303-443-2122 or 303-449-4885.
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There are few pop groups more tried-and-true than Toots and the Maytals, one of reggae's most enduring representatives and certainly--there's a reason for it--one of its best, not to mention most fun. A long-lived vehicle for vocal powerhouse Fredrick "Toots" Hibbert, whose soul-infused style lovingly exposes early-Sixties roots, the Maytals bring it home to the Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder, tonight at 9. Tickets are $19; call 303-443-3399 or 303-830-TIXS.
Denver sculptor John DeAndrea has been charming arts audiences both locally and around the world for years with his astonishingly life-like cast polyvinyl nudes, many of which must hold a record for the number of curious double-takes they've inspired. These days, DeAndrea's works, while still realistic and based on human forms, have shifted to body fragments in latex, plaster and bronze, a sampling of which goes on display today at the Mizel Family Cultural Arts Center's Singer Gallery, located in the Robert E. Loup Jewish Community Center, 350 S. Dahlia St. John DeAndrea: Fragments, the sculptor's first local exhibition since a 1996 retrospective at the Denver Art Museum, opens tonight with a reception from 5:30 to 8:30; the show continues through August 29. Call 303-399-2660.
Filmmaking naturalist Sir David Attenborough has always done more than take pictures of animals doing what animals do--he's brought them to life in far more exacting and comprehensive ways. It's intellectually stimulating natural history that you can touch, feel and learn from, and his new ten-part series The Life of Birds is a fine, entertaining continuation of that legacy, exploring every broad and minute facet of the bird world in great detail. The series premieres with To Fly or Not to Fly, a look at the evolution of flight as well as modern flightless birds, tonight at 9 on KRMA-TV/Channel 6; future installments will air Tuesday nights in the weeks to come.
For the kid who's never been satisfied with fairy tale characters living happily ever after and that's that, there's now The Further Adventures of Little Red Riding Hood, an imagination-firing children's musical in which Red teams up with a dragon pal, careens through a bunch of rival stories and gives in to the power of dreams, now showing at the Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities, 6901 Wadsworth Blvd., through August 12. Performances run Tuesdays through Thursdays, but showtimes vary; for information and tickets, $5, call 303-431-3939.