Happy Thursday, sweaty readers! After a week of sun-beaten suffering, locals looking for ways to unwind have a surfeit of entertainment options this weekend. While some events in the days ahead may be out of range for penny-pinchers and Johnny-come-latelies, Westword has helpfully assembled a list of diversions that won't break the bank. Each of the ten events listed below costs less than ten American dollars to attend (fine print notwithstanding) — including six freebies. If you've got a crisp Hamilton and a willingness to experiment, here are ten ways to have a grand old time in the Mile High.
Black Shirt Comedy Night
Thursday, June 28, 7:30 to 9 p.m.
Black Shirt Brewing Co.
Denverites are particularly spoiled for choice when it comes to comedy and craft beer, and another fine option emerges with the debut of Black Shirt Comedy Night. Celebrated for its red beer and lively patio, Black Shirt Brewing recently claimed a Best of Denver award for its live music, so the fledgling showcase is built on a foundation of top-notch performances. Furthermore, Black Shirt has enlisted Denver Comedy Champion — and the brewery's resident trivia night quiz master — Nathan Lund to host and curate the new endeavor. The inaugural lineup includes a cavalcade of local comics including Derrick Stroup, Cody Spyker, Minoria Hinds and Ben Kronberg. Admission is free; find more details on Black Shirt's Facebook events page.
Community Get Down
Thursday, June 28, 8 to 11 p.m.
Join in the coalition of the chilling tonight at the Mercury Cafe's Community Get Down, a free concert that brings some of Denver's finest musicians together under one roof. Organized by Free Music for Free People, the show is a genre-spanning tour through the sounds of the city. The lineup includes Olivia Blu, Happy Child, Juicebox of Paradise, Jaclyn Nucci, Smiley Gatmouth, Encav and Cassidy Bacon — with even more acts to be announced. Get an early start on the weekend and jam the night away at one of the city's most welcoming venues. Admission is free; visit Mercury Cafe's Facebook events page to learn more.
B-Side Music Friday with French Kettle Station
Friday, June 29, 5 to 10 p.m.
Denver's Museum of Contemporary Art is known for its thought-provoking modern installations, but the museum grounds also happen to include one of the finest rooftop patios in the downtown area. Enjoy tunes, views and brews at B-Side Music Fridays, an ongoing presentation of emerging local bands, which returns this week with a performance from the Best of Denver award-winning French Kettle Station. The first 100 guests receive a free draft from Ratio Beerworks, so we recommend arriving before the music starts if you're eager to get some suds in your blood. Admission is $5 at the door, but members get in free. Find out more on MCA Denver's Facebook events page.
Lawn Concert: Chimney Choir
Friday, June 29, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Clyfford Still Museum
Swallow Hill Music is teaming up with the Clyfford Still Museum all summer long for the Lawn Concert series, which continues this week with an appearance from Chimney Choir, yet another Best of Denver award winner. Playfully juxtaposing mandolins and accordions with synthesizers and salvage-metal percussion, Chimney Choir gives traditional folk sounds an innovative twist. In addition to fine music, guests can enjoy gourmet sausages from Biker Jim’s, ice cream sandwiches from Peteybird, and local microbrews from Baere Brewing Co. — all of which sound mighty appealing on a balmy afternoon. No cover charge. Visit the Clyfford Still Museum's event calendar for more details.
Celso Piña and iZCALLi
Friday, June 29, 6 to 10 p.m.
Levitt Pavilion's summer concert series continues its quest for your ears and hearts with a double bill featuring Celso Piña and iZCALLi. Denver mainstays and Westword Music Showcase alums, the bilingual rockers in iZCALLi are no strangers to shredding on the Levitt Stage. They're joined by Celso Piña —affectionately known as "El Rebelde del Acordeón" — a virtuoso accordionist whose mastery of cumbia music has encompassed an ever-increasing range of genres from norteño and sonidero to reggae and hip-hop. Admission is free, and VIP upgrades have already sold out. Visit Levitt Pavilion's Eventbrite page to RSVP and find more information.
Guest List Comedy EP Recording
Friday, June 29, 8 to 9:30 p.m.
The Bakery Arts Warehouse
Nearly a year after bringing throngs of Denver's funniest standups together for a comprehensive comedy mixtape, the Guest List Comedy Show embarks on another foray into posterity at a live EP recording on Friday night. Spearheaded by Guest List's hardworking host and producer Ben Bryant, the show presents a chance for local comedy fans to hear Bryant, Cody Spyker, David Rodriguez and Derrick Stroup work through well-polished twenty-minute sets, and for the comics to create a tangible record of material they've spent years developing. Self-starters are the lifeblood of Denver's creative community, so don't miss the opportunity to support what could well be a significant step forward for Colorado's comedy scene. Tickets are $10 via Eventbrite.
Friday Night Weird: The Killing of a Scared Deer
Friday, June 29, 8:45 p.m.
Boedecker Theater, Boulder
$6.50 to $12
"Panned at Cannes," Friday Night Weird's month-long tribute to the cinematic scourges of the Croisette, winds down this week with a screening of a deeply puzzling film that raised hackles from festival attendees in 2017: The Killing of a Sacred Deer. The latest audience-agitator from Greek auteur Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth, The Lobster), The Killing of a Sacred Deer is a deeply unnerving viewing experience, fraught with moral quandaries, haunting imagery and oddly affectless performances from stars Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman and especially Barry Keoghan, who essentially personifies creepiness. It's easy to see why Cannes jurors and film-goers alike balked at Lanthimos's most troublingly opaque work yet, but it's the sort of movie that burrows into viewers' memories and develops its own cult — in other words, a fitting end to the series. Visit The Dairy Center's box-office page to buy tickets, $6.50 to $12, and learn more.
Denver Families Belong Together Rally
Saturday, June 30, 10 a.m. to noon
Civic Center Park
Though these lists are typically focused on fun and diversion, the Trump administration's near-daily assaults on human rights can make entertainment seem frivolous. After weeks of internationally ruinous and cruel immigration policies that have codified religious discrimination, detained and separated vulnerable families (ineffectual executive order notwithstanding), outraged Denverites must once again gather en masse to make their voices heard. Send the message that families belong together, that defunding ICE is defunding hate, and that these heinous practices don't represent the American character. Visit Denver Families Belong Together's Facebook events page for more details.
The Purple Duck Chase: Epilepsy Awareness Day
Saturday, June 30, 10 a.m. to noon
$5 to $60
Paint the park purple at the Third Annual Epilepsy Awareness Day, a family-friendly fundraiser organized by the Chelsea Hutchison Foundation. Watch purple ducks race through Elitch Gardens' Lazy River in an affably competitive way to raise awareness and money for epilepsy. Visit the Chelsea Hutchison Foundation's Eventbrite page to make a donation or buy tickets, $5 to $60.
Shakesbeer Presents: The Comedy of Errors
Sunday, July 1, 5 to 7 p.m.
A fine folly for fond fools, the Wit's Shakesbeer Company returns to Ratio Beerworks with a boozily abbreviated rendition of William Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors. Following Elizabethan theatrical tradition (presumably along with beery inclinations), the Wit's players imbibe right along with the groundlings for an evening of irreverence in iambs. If you can't make this week's performance, fret not: The Shakesbeer players will be back at Ratio on Sunday, July 8, for a reprise performance. Admission is free. Visit the Wit's Shakesbeer Facebook events page to learn more.
Do you have an event you think belongs on one of our lists? Send the details to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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