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Five Things to Do for Free This Weekend

The Mile High Tree is much more than a Christmas experience.EXPAND
The Mile High Tree is much more than a Christmas experience.
Brandon Johnson (@BJohnsonxAR)

It's a Denver tradition to keep holiday lights on through January — at least at the Denver City & County Building. You can thank the National Western Stock Show for that; decades ago, rural residents who came to town for the show expressed their disappointment that the holiday lights had gone dark by the time they arrived, and Denver obliged them by keeping the lights on at City Hall. But that's not the only place that's all aglow...keep reading for five illuminating free events this weekend.

Mile High Tree

Daily through January 31, 5:30 to 9 p.m.
Sculpture Park, Denver Performing Arts Complex
Even if you've already experienced the Mile High Tree, Denver's newest — and tallest — holiday attraction, there's reason to return to Sculpture Park. Two reasons, actually: a pair of brand-new light shows set to non-holiday soundtracks. The first is an all-Colorado set, with bands ranging from the Fray to the Lumineers to Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats. The second is a dance-happy array of tunes, with a slight Western twang in a nod to the National Western Stock Show. And in between, you can hear the Colorado Symphony play Charles Denler’s sweeping Portraits of Colorado — An American Symphony No. 1. The free shows start every fifteen minutes; adult beverages are available for purchase.

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Dance Party With Starburn
Friday, January 10, 7 p.m.
Stargazers, 10 South Parkside Drive, Colorado Springs

Blast classic rock through your car as you head down to Colorado Springs for a free dance party with Starburn, which plays hits by Santana, Chicago, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin, the Doobie Brothers, Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, and many more big acts from the ’60s and ’70s. Starburn has opened for national touring acts ranging from Jefferson Starship to Kofi Baker; the music is bound to get you moving into the new year. Doors open at 6 p.m.; find out more here.

seal boy
Saturday, January 11, 2 p.m.
Grace Gamm Theater, Dairy Arts Center, 2590 Walnut Street

The Boulder Ensemble Theatre Company is hosting a public reading of its latest Generations new play competition winner: seal boy, by Ken Weitzman. Here's the description of this "contemporary fable" from the BETC: "Meg has given birth to a seal. But what kind? Predator? Prey? And if she doesn't know, how will she know how to keep him safe? Or others safe from him?" The reading is free, but reservations are required; make yours here.

"Eve of Transformation," by Raymond McCoy.
"Eve of Transformation," by Raymond McCoy.
CPAC

The Subjective Lens - Through the Eyes of Veterans
Saturday, January 11, 5 to 8 p.m.
Colorado Photographic Arts Center, 1070 Bannock Street

Meet the artists behind The Subjective Lens - Through the Eyes of Veterans, ten Denver-area veterans who've all participated in CPAC’s Veterans Workshop Series, at this reception for a show of their work that runs through February 15. You can learn more at cpacphoto.org, where you can also catch the online exhibit Your Denver 2019, a joint effort of CPAC and the Denver Architecture Foundation that includes thirty stunning photos of the Mile High City. That ends February 1.

Together in This
Monday, January 13, 5:30 p.m.
Denver Community Church,1595 Pearl Street

Did you resolve to become more understanding in 2020? The Interfaith Alliance of Colorado is hosting
"Together in This," an opportunity for leaders from multiple faith traditions to talk about hot topics. Panelists include Reverend Dr. Tom Wolfe of the Iliff School of Theology; Nabeeh Hasan of the Muslim Community Council; Reverend Dr. Jennifer Leath of Campbell Chapel AME Church and the Iliff School of Theology; Rabbi Bruce Dollin of the Hebrew Education Alliance; Sister Marion Weinzapfel of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph; and Reverend Dr. Mark Young of the Denver Seminary. Reverend Amanda Henderson, executive director of the Interfaith Alliance of Colorado, will moderate. Admission is free; find out more here.

And a bonus!

On Tuesday, January 14, grounds admission at the National Western Stock Show is free for all Colorado residents. Get all the details at nationalwestern.com.

Know of a great free event? Send information to editorial@westword.com.

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