Mongol Society

When you first think of Genghis Khan, you invariably picture a fierce-looking barbarian Mongol in a flashy helmet with awesome facial hair of the Fu Manchu persuasion. And then you figure he was the kind of guy who’d nonchalantly lop off your head if you crossed him. You wouldn’t be far from wrong. But as you’ll learn from the new blockbuster exhibit Genghis Khan, which opened October 16 at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, the relentless warlord was also a statesman who drew together the nomadic peasants of his homeland to form an empire of great strength and unity.

The museum show brings the raucous ruler’s thirteenth-century milieu to life by including everything from a traditional walk-in ger, a yurt-like tent dwelling, to a treasury of precious artifacts and relics borrowed from museums around the world, while interactive features, family activities, weaponry demonstration and live cultural performances provided by members of Denver’s large Mongolian population offer family-friendly touches to the historical walk-through.

That said, it would be wise to write this exhibition — open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, through February 7, 2010 — onto your must-do list right now, because, well, Genghis Khan would want you to, and you don’t want to cross Genghis Khan. Tickets are $11 to $20 (or $5 to $8 for museum members), and reservations are highly recommended: Go to or call 303-322-7009 to make yours. The DMNS is at 2001 Colorado Boulevard.
Oct. 16-Feb. 7, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., 2009

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd

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