Thursday, October 4, 6:30 to 8 p.m.
Syntax Physic Opera
Doubling down on the age-old axiom "The pen is mightier than the sword," WRITE CLUB is the bloodsport of the mind, a "literary thunderdome" that swaps weapons for wits in a series of one-on-one literary yarn-offs contending for a prize donation to a charitable cause. October's WRITE CLUB competitors spring forth from the freewheelingly obscure theme of "Circling Back"; join storytellers Kat Atwell, Laura Condi, Cory Byrom, Jared Ewy, Rich Hohenbrink and Shelsea Ochoa for a bloodless brawl on the battlefield of rhetoric. Admission is $10 at the door — though the kindly gatekeepers at Syntax are unlikely to turn you away if you're a few dollars shy of a Hamilton. More details are available on WRITE CLUB's Facebook events page.
Thursday, October 4, 8 to 9 p.m.
Pay what you can
After months of crowdfunding and hammer-swinging renovations, Grafenberg Productions is ready to open to the public. A burgeoning haven for improvisers and the saintly audiences who support them, Grafenberg — named in honor of the g-spot-discovering physician Ernst Gräfenberg — embarks on one of its earliest endeavors at the new 1223 21st Street location with Genre-ral Hospital. An improvisational performance inspired by televisual tropes, Genre-ral Hospital debuts with a comically escalating series of riffs on medical soap operas and continues with a different theme each subsequent week. Admission is granted on a pay-what-you-may basis; visit Grafenberg Productions' Facebook events page for more information.
October 5 to 7 (ongoing), 10 a.m.
Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms
$9 to $14
Find plenty of autumnal splendor while getting lost in the Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield Farms' family-friendly Corn Maze. View the grounds from a pair of fifteen-foot tall illuminated bridges — and struggle to escape anyway — at an event that seizes upon the spooky atmosphere of October. The maze opened on September 21 and admits its last explorer on October 28. Admission is $9 to $14, but all first responders get in for free. For more details, visit the Denver Botanic Gardens' Facebook events page.
Midnight Madness: Beetlejuice
October 5 to 6, midnight
Take heart, overzealous Hallow-weiners; the Landmark Esquire's Midnight Madness film series proffers an early season infusion of the cinematic spooky-ookies with a screening of Beetlejuice, the crowning cinematic achievement of goth-freindly auteur Tim Burton – and we'll haunt the attics of anyone who claims otherwise. While the movie's German Expressionism-inspired horrors have provided trick-or-treaters with endless costume inspiration since its 1988 release, the tone-waltzing gallows humor of Beetlejuice — we promise not to say it three times — doesn't get enough credit. After all, Michael Keaton, the titular star of the movie, made his first forays into show business via standup comedy. Buy tickets, $9.50, and find out more on the Landmark Esquire box-office page.