Wednesday September 21 Meal ticket: Boulder's favorite home and gourmet store (actually two stores) is throwing a four-day Peppercorn Anniversary Celebration, beginning today and continuing through Saturday. Each day will be loaded down with cooking demonstrations and myriad food tastings, with delicious wares from Colorado and around the world. Customers will also have a chance to participate in a treasure hunt or register to win a fabulous tableful of classy place settings. The Peppercorn is at 1235 Pearl St., on the mall in Boulder; walk through the back door and you'll find yourself in its sister store, the Peppercorn Collection. All events are free; for details call 449-5847.
Thursday September 22 Wested interests: Roy Rogers and Dale Evans--along with other nostalgic Western images reminiscent of the Fifties--will ride again, when Happy Trails gallops into the Denver Buffalo Company tonight. The show is highlighted by works from Bob Wade, known for both his pastel-tinted photo-emulsions of cowgirls, cowpokes and Indians and his larger-than-life iguana and frog sculptures adorning restaurants in Niagara Falls and Dallas; Joyce Deck, whose paintings reflect a romanticized television West; and Stephen Morath, a folk-art road warrior whose paintings and prints take a colorful drive through the Southwest. It also will feature vintage duds and other collectibles. An opening reception will be held this evening from 6 until 9 at 1109 Lincoln St.; the show remains on display through October 25. Call 832-0880.
Tenor of the times: Saxophonist David Murray, the prolific product of an intense New York jazz scene that began to percolate with young talent in the Seventies, has managed to document his work in many ways--solo, with a big band and in tandem with more than one musical giant on the cutting edge. A graduate of the venerable World Saxophone Quartet, Murray has also worked alongside everyone from Anthony Braxton to James Blood Ulmer. Now he's involved in something called the Kelly Roberty-David Murray Project, a quartet that will cook tonight at the Mount Vernon Country Club, located in the foothills off I-70 at Exit 254. Admission to the 8 p.m. show, sponsored by the Creative Music Works, is $10 ($8-$9 CMW members); a buffet will be served at 6 p.m. ($21.95 dinner/concert package). For reservations call 526-0616. Across the grape divide: Fledgling wineries now flourish on Colorado's Western Slope, and nine of them will celebrate their own tenacity and sparkling vintages with the third annual Colorado Mountain Winefest, a long weekend of wine tastings, seminars, tours, entertainment and hobnobbing with vintners. Grand Junction and Palisade will host the event, which kicks off tonight at 8 with a winemakers' dinner ($55), continues tomorrow with a 7 p.m. grand tasting ($25) and gets into full swing Saturday with an outdoor festival featuring food, a kids' area, crafts, entertainment by the group Firefall and others and, naturally, more vino ($5-$10). Free vineyard tours wrap things up on Sunday, leaving you just enough time to pack and skedaddle back home. Call 1-800-962-2547 for information; to reserve tickets call 1-303-243-TIXS.
Friday September 23 Big blowout: The Hyatt Regency Tech Center will erupt with a joyful noise this weekend when Summit Jazz returns for three days of jazz, jazz and more jazz. Groups taking part in the marathon event include the Ralph Sutton All Stars, the Jim Cullum Jazz Band, the Buck Creek Jazz Band and the Alan Frederickson Jazz Ensemble--all of which will hit the stage at each of four performances. Tonight's session ($25) begins at 7 and rolls until midnight, Saturday's shows are from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. ($20) and 7 p.m. to 1:20 a.m. ($30), and things finish up Sunday with a marathon from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ($30). Diehards can attend the whole enchilada for $85 ($150 patron); call 674-4190 for tickets.
Flash dance: Flashy costumes and fancy steps are the hallmarks of folk dance--a colorful, exuberant discipline celebrated in the magazine VILTIS, a periodical lovingly published for the last fifty years by 86-year-old folk-dance teacher and enthusiast Vytautas Beliajus. He'll celebrate his birthday and the magazine's anniversary with a Folk Dance Festival this weekend on the DU Law School campus at Montview and Quebec. Events--including a party tonight, a banquet and dance concert tomorrow and a number of workshops--will range from public folk dancing to performances of tricky steps from the U.S., Ukraine, Greece, the Middle East, Latvia, Lithuania and Spain. Admission to each event or class is separate, ranging from $5 to $16. For details, call 452-7732.
Saturday September 24 A print among men: New Mexico printmaker Rick Ximenes is known among the artists he works with as "Mister Master" because of his unmatched technical skill with fine-art printing media. A favorite with Southwestern artists like Frank Howell and Amado Pena, Ximenes is the guy who makes their work shine as each piece is pulled from the press. Two of his fans, Native American imagists Raymond Nordwall and Dan Lomahaftewa, will join him for a monotype-and-collagraph demonstration this evening from 5 to 8 at the Evergreen Art Company Fine Art Gallery, 3092 Evergreen Pkwy. in Evergreen, where the two artists' work will be shown through October 8. Call 670-1867.
Sunday September 25 In praise of rock: Public radio's E-Town, known for its blend of discussion about environmental issues and bang-up live entertainment, is serving equal helpings of both elements tonight. On the musical end, there's ex-Blaster Dave Alvin--a hard-driving roots rocker who thrilled critics with his recent album on Hightone Records, King of California, an acoustic about-face as honest and raw as a pair of old jeans. And on the environmental side, there's guest James Bishop Jr., biographer of the writer, naturalist, activist and environmental granddaddy Edward Abbey. Singer-songwriter and health-food expert Dar Williams (who's published a cross-country directory of natural-foods stores) fills out the bill, starting tonight at 7 in the Boulder Theater, 2030 14th St., Boulder. Tickets are $6 in advance ($8 day of show); to get yours call 786-7030.
Fall on wheels: You don't have to be a hardcore gearhead to enjoy today's BikeToberfest cycling tour, but it probably wouldn't hurt. Participants get to choose between 30K, 60K or grueling 100K routes, but whatever ride you pick, you'll still be treated to a grand fall day, and you'll be raising funds for the Multiple Sclerosis Society. It all begins with a check-in at 7 a.m., followed by race starts at 8 and 9 a.m., at the Boulder County Fairgrounds, 95th St. and Nelson Rd. in Longmont, and finishes off with a spaghetti dinner and beer garden for the weary. Cyclists must pay a $10 registration fee and at least $75 in pledges. For information call 1-800-843-5767.
Monday September 26 The big buildup: Tours, lectures, panels and a fun day for kids make up the itinerary for Denver's celebration of Architecture Week, beginning today and continuing through Saturday. Events start this evening at 5:15, when Mayor Webb makes an official proclamation--a sort of architectural state of the city--at the Denver Press Club, 1325 Glenarm Pl. Tours highlighting high-profile projects in the metro area begin with a hard-hat venture through the new Central Denver Library site on Tuesday, a walk-through at Coors Field on Wednesday and a visit to the Greenwood Plaza Business Park and Museum of Outdoor Arts on Friday. Reservations are recommended, as tour-group sizes will be limited. Seminars and displays take place throughout the week, and from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday events will be scaled down to a kid's-eye view with a day of hands-on architectural model-making using something called a Zometool , at Fillmore Plaza, 2nd Ave. and Fillmore St. For a schedule of events, reservations or details call 892-1188.
Tuesday September 27 Fine Art: Pulitzer Prize-winning social commentator and columnist Art Buchwald has always delighted readers with his deft and witty political humor, and he'll be doing just that--in person--tonight at 8 at Boettcher Concert Hall, 14th and Curtis in the Plex. And get ready for the barbs: The evening, a benefit for Yes 2 Youth, will focus on Buchwald's current pet lecture topic, "Washington Is a Laughing Matter." Tickets are $18, $35 and $100 (the latter includes a patron party with Buchwald). For information or to purchase tickets, call 333-4835 or 290-
Get the Things to Do Newsletter
Sign up for our weekly guide to events in Denver, and never be bored again. With suggestions for every day of the week, our recommendations will keep you busy on any budget.