Thursday, May 6
Make time for space: Across the nation, Colorado heavyweight Lockheed Martin will sponsor Space Day 2004, which was created to highlight the remarkable work of space-industry pioneers. "Blazing Galactic Trails," the event at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, 2001 Colorado Boulevard, will feature astronaut Bruce McCandless anchoring special space-related activities today from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. McCandless, who logged an incredible 312 hours in space and completed a groundbreaking untethered free flight, will speak at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and noon at the museum's Space Odyssey exhibit; additional attractions include science demonstrations, a play called Living in Space, solar viewing on the Sky Terrace, kids' crafts and more, all free with regular museum admission. Call 303-322-7009 or log on to www.dmns.org.
Friday, May 7
Last year, the Denver Botanic Gardens Plant and Book Sale was snowed out on its first day. Gardeners know it could just as likely be a beautiful, sunny day when this year's version rolls around. As green thumbs -- and their owners -- converge on this true rite of spring, they'll find heirloom tomato plants, a zillion varieties of basil, a wealth of tough, xeriscape-friendly perennials, gorgeous hanging baskets and more. The gates swing open to the public from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow; shopping is also open to members only from 8:30 to 10 a.m. both days. The gardens are at 1005 York Street; to relieve traffic and parking congestion, shuttles will run both days from the National Jewish Medical and Research Center, 14th Avenue and Jackson Street. Call 720-865-3500 or go to www.botanicgardens.org for details.
For folks more interested in drinking the fruit of the vine than growing it, the Denver Art Museum, 100 West 14th Avenue Parkway, will host DAM Uncorked, two days devoted to the appreciation of fine wines. The event pops its cork tonight with a pre-sipping seminar, "Wine 101: Tasting Basics," headed by sommelier Jeff Tufford of Southern Wine and Spirits, from 5:30 to 6:15 p.m., along with a chi-chi tasting from 6 to 9. Consumption continues tomorrow from 7 to 10 p.m. and includes a sit-down dinner, private museum exhibit tours, and live and silent auctions presided over by Samir Sharma of Christie's (items on the block include everything from vacation opportunities to tasty rarities for your own home wine cellar). Admission is $60 to $75 for Friday's tasting ($30 for designated drivers), $25 for the seminar, $160 for the dinner/auction, or $175 to $190 for an all-inclusive weekend package. To make reservations, which are recommended, call 720-913-0039; for information, log on to www.denverartmuseum.org.
Saturday, May 8
It's the start of National Tourism Week, so be kind to those yokels, er, folks with cameras strapped around their necks, gawking at all those golly-gee-whiz sights hereabouts. To encourage visiting big spenders, various organizations and businesses are offering discounts and incentives. All folks have to do is say the three magic words -- "National Tourism Week" -- and they'll get a buck off admission to the Denver Art Museum or free dessert with an entree at Maggiano's Little Italy, among other treats. For a complete list of tourist-boosting spots, log on to www.denver.org. -- and tell 'em Westword sent ya.
The Maxfund Animal Adoption Center is launching its first event of the summer, the Whine and PuPu Prance. If sheer curiosity about the name isn't enough to get you to drop $25 at the door, we don't know what will. A volunteer has donated two rooms at the Adam's Mark Hotel to the no-kill shelter, and founder Bill Suro is asking people to support the cause by attending a wine-tasting party and then getting funky to the sounds of Tony Funderburk. (Get it? Whine and prance?) Free food (pupu) and a cash bar round out the party, which goes from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m at 1550 Court Place. For more information, call 303-595-4917.
Sunday, May 9
While every clan seems to have its own Mother's Day customs, here are a few additional suggestions: Traditional mothers want it all -- champagne, flowers, brunch with all the trimmings -- and they can have it at the Hudson Gardens Mother's Day Brunch, an annual al fresco party with a buffet, roving entertainers, big-band tunes, garden strolls, vintage cars and craft projects to keep the kids busy while moms bask in the sun, wearing their Sunday best. The buffet is open from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the gardens, 6115 South Santa Fe Drive, Littleton; tickets are $12 to $20 and available by paid reservation only. For yours, call 303-797-8565, ext. 321; for information, log on to www.hudsongardens.org. On the opposite end of the spectrum strides the activist mom, always ready to raise her voice for a cause. Those matriarchs will be in their element on Boulder's Pearl Street Mall at today's annual Mothers Acting Up community Mother's Day parade, in which costumed mothers (and their children and significant others) march -- some on stilts -- to raise awareness for children's rights and welfare. Paraders can meet at 12:45 p.m. at the Boulder Public Library, 1000 Canyon Boulevard, before making their way up the mall for live entertainment, information tables, free cake and more; call 303-442-7628 or go to www.mothersactingup.org for details.
Monday, May 10
It sometimes seems that there's more to the Colorado History Museum than meets the eye. Maybe it's buried deep in dusty vaults, somewhere in the concrete belly of the Civic Center. That's a good hunch: The Colorado Historical Society has nearly 12 million items under lock and key, and there's no way all of it could ever be displayed to the public at once. However, about a hundred such artifacts are getting a reprieve for Icons and Oddities: 125 Years of Collecting Colorado, a new display of CHS relics that include everything from Alfred Packer's pistol to a pair of pioneer-era dentures. The exhibit continues through August 2 in the Arco/Rotary Gallery at the museum, 1300 Broadway; call 303-866-3682 or log on to www.coloradohistory.org.
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Tuesday, May 11
If Mother's Day has gotten you thinking about what it really means to be a mother, a new photography exhibit at the DU Museum of Anthropology will help satisfy your curiosity with a political/intellectual take. Beggars and Choosers: Motherhood Is Not a Class Privilege, curated by feminist historian Rickie Solinger and artist Kay Oberling, takes a look at non-traditional mothers and the discrimination they face. In conjunction with the exhibit, the DU College of Law will host a free panel discussion, "Motherhood and Privilege," from 4 to 5:30 p.m. today in room 270 at the DU College of Law, 2255 East Evans Avenue. Beggars and Choosers continues through June 4 in Sturm Hall 102, 2000 East Asbury Avenue on the DU campus. For details, call 303-871-2688.
Wednesday, May 12
The Denver Press Club, 1330 Glenarm Place, recently started a Women's Poker Night for members going cold turkey after Sex and the City's finale. So strap on your Manolos, leave your denial behind, and join the club. Tonight's bee gets started around 6:30 p.m., with Gary Eklund of ESPN Radio acting as poker instructor. A $50 donation includes dinner and benefits the Gathering Place. Games are scheduled for the second Wednesday of each month; call 303-399-8635 or go to www.pokerandthecity.com.