The Denver Taco Festival will offer lucha libre on the side.Kenneth Hamblin III
Even though rent is due next week, there's no need to stay inside and eat ramen: The calendar is overflowing with free or inexpensive entertainment opportunities. This weekend, you can attend eclectic music events, celebrate dogs or eat plenty of tacos. Keep reading for ten great (and cheap) things to do around Denver over the next few days.
Highlands Square Ensemble
Thursday, June 27, 6 p.m.
First Baptist Church, 1373 Grant Street
The Highland Square Ensemble offers free concerts around the city that further the appreciation of chamber music; the group includes talented musicians who boast a wide range of professional experience, including stints with the Colorado Symphony. This performance at the First Baptist Church led by Felix Petit will focus on composers Prokofiev, Haydn and Ponce.
COFOH Live & Undead Thursday, June 27, 7 to 8 p.m. Mutiny Information Cafe Free
The first-ever Colorado Festival of Horror, set for November 11-13, will offer plenty of thrills and chills; to get you in the spooky mood, the fest is offering a series of live interviews. At this Live & Undead event, Richard Taylor and Zach Beins, creators of the horror comedy Atom the Amazing Zombie Killer, will spill some secrets. For a full schedule of the Live & Undead events, visit the COFOH's Facebook events page.
Summer Concert Series: Stillhouse Junkies Friday, June 28, 7 to 9 p.m. Terminal Bar Free
The dominant theme this summer seems to be free concerts, and you won't hear us complain. On June 28, the Terminal Bar's enlarged patio at Union Station will host the Stillhouse Junkies, finalists in the 2018 Telluride Bluegrass Festival Band Contest, who will share their unique blend of funk and bluegrass. The concert series continues on the last Friday of every month through August 30; for details, visit the Terminal Bar's Facebook event page.
Rough, a Comedy Show Friday, June 28, 8 to 11 p.m. Mercury Cafe $5 online, $10 at the door
Comics put their old jokes on the line at Rough, a comedy show that focuses on the the writing process. Performers dig out old jokes to see how the world has changed since they first offered them, then mix in current events to see if they can get fresh laughs. Tickets are $5 on the event's Facebook Page and $10 at the door; a portion of the proceeds will go to RAICES, a nonprofit that promotes justice for immigrants.
Cozy: Queer Dance & Lingerie Party Friday, June 28, 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. Blush & Blu $5 Kick off your heels and put on your slippers and PJs for the town's comfiest low-pressure dance party, a true pajama party. Several local vendors will be in attendance offering a wide array of items, but the dance will be the focus. Blush & Blu maintains a safe space, where intolerance of any kind is strictly prohibited; for more information, visit Blush & Blu's Event Page.
Nature Play Community Pop-Up
Saturday, June 29, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. City Park
The Denver Museum of Nature & Science and Denver Parks and Recreation want kids (and grown-up kids) to get back to basics, and play outside. This interactive event will offer family-fun activities, as well as a healthy reminder to step away from the screens and into the fresh air; smoothies and Latin food will be available. The pop-up will be between Ferrill Lake and the museum, and while it's free, registration is encouraged.
2019 Denver Taco Festival Saturday, June 28, noon to 9 p.m. and Sunday, June 29, noon to 8 p.m. Fox Street Combo $10 Tacos are so beloved that there are festivals dedicated to their deliciousness. The Denver Taco Festival is offering tacos from kitchens all over the city, as well as live music, lucha libre wrestling and Chihuahua racing, plus a tequila expo. General admission tickets to the festival are $10, and kids twelve and under get in free (admission to the tequila festival is $25). To purchase tickets and see the schedule, visit the Denver Taco Festival website.
Motown Groove Saturday, June 29, 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Goosetown Tavern Free Motown Groove has been bringing down the house for eight years, and now it's throwing a party to celebrate its anniversary. Veteran host Miggy Camacho will emcee the night, which includes a surprise guest. Since there's no cover, you can afford to get a few drinks and an app off the Goosetown Tavern menu.
Cookie Decorating Contest Sunday, June 30, 2 to 4 p.m. Grandma's House $6
Embrace your creativity and put your piping skills to the test with a cookie-decorating contest. Unfortunately, the cookies are already made, so you won't be able to lick cookie batter off the spoon, the way you did when baking with your own grandma, but no one will tattle if you steal a few spoonfuls of frosting. For six bucks, you get two sugar cookies and all the supplies you'll need to turn your baked goods into pieces of art. To register, visit the Facebook page for Grandma's House.
Dog Party Sunday, June 30, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Illegal Pete's South Broadway Free
Grab the entire family, including the ones that need leashes, and head to Illegal Pete's at 270 South Broadway for a party open to all. The parking lot will be closed and turned into an open space to make room for four-legged guests and their owners. If you're looking to adopt a new best friend, the Dumb Friends League and Maxfund will on hand with puppies looking for their forever homes. Come thirsty and hungry! Find out more at the Illegal Pete's website.
Know of an event that belongs on this list? Email [email protected]
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Zoe Yabrove is a Denver native with an undergraduate degree in creative writing and a master’s in special education. She is a teacher in Denver Public Schools and contributes to Westword to get her writing fix.