Things to Do

The 21 Best Events in Denver, August 5 Through August 11

Why, yes, the Frida Kahlo: A Celebration of Life Arts Show does include a look-alike contest.
Why, yes, the Frida Kahlo: A Celebration of Life Arts Show does include a look-alike contest. Courtesy of Jozéf-Martinë-Hair?
Another week, another opportunity to pack your schedule with fun things to do in and around Denver. If hip-hop's your thing, don't miss Mary J. Blige and Nas double-headlining Fiddler's Green. Looking for something different? Try on the Mile in My Shoes exhibit, which gives you a visceral opportunity to learn about someone new. Keep reading for more events this week, including a Frida Kahlo celebration, plenty of dogs and even some doughnuts.

Monday, August 5

Who doesn’t love rooting for underdogs — or should we say underducks? When The Mighty Ducks — the ’90s coming-of-age comedy about misfit kids on a struggling hockey team — comes to the Denver Film Society’s Film on the Rocks, you’ll have a chance to cheer on more than just the Ducks with pucks: Youth bands from School of Rock will be slaying before the screening. Festivities start at 7 p.m. Monday, August 5, at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, 18000 West Alameda Parkway in Morrison. Find tickets, $16 to $32, at denverfilm.org.

Tuesday, August 6

As a participant in both the National New Play Network professional alliance and its own New Voices National Collective for youth playwrights, Curious Theatre Company has its finger on the future of professional theater as well as the future of playwriting itself. In Transit, young playwright Holden Thomas’s story of a transgender teen caught between two worlds while finding a sense of identity, is the product of a national 2018 New Voices intensive at Curious; the play will now hit the stage for a one-night test run (and post-performance conversation) at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, August 6, at  Miners Alley Playhouse, 1224 Washington Avenue in Golden. Admission is free, but reservations are recommended; visit curioustheatre.org to RSVP and learn more.

Wednesday, August 7

Mary J. Blige and Nas are proof that it's possible for esteemed veterans of the hip-hop game to remain vital well into the third decade of their careers. A soulful chanteuse who penned and crooned hit albums and singles, including the karaoke staple "No More Drama," Blige has flourished in recent years, earning Academy Award nominations for Best Supporting Actress and Best Original Song for her contributions to Mudbound. Nas, meanwhile, burst onto the scene with the instant classic Illmatic, establishing a legacy of deft lyricism he's maintained through his latest release, 2018's Nasir. Although the co-headliners first collaborated back in 1997, Blige and Nas have never hit the road together before now. They'll be at Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre, 6450 Greenwood Plaza Boulevard, starting at 8 p.m. Wednesday, August 7; visit fiddlersgreenamp.com for tickets, $36.50 to $251, and more information.


Thursday, August 8

Boulder’s Catamounts teamed up with the City of Westminster to turn a slice of local lore into an immersive experience at Semper Farm, a preserved homestead at West 92nd Avenue and Pierce Street that was built in 1881 by Rocky Mountain News typesetter Charles Semper and his wife, Julia. The Last Apple Tree, a site-specific musical in motion, will lead an audience in small groups through stories from the farm’s history, told through theatrical vignettes and music by Bonnie Elizabeth Sims and Taylor Sims of Bonnie and the Clydes; everything wraps up with a hoedown accompanied by the whole band. The Last Apple Tree runs from Thursday, August 8, through Sunday, August 11; tickets are a sweet grab for only $10 at cityofwestminster.us.

No water. No Beer. That is the main message behind the Save the Ales Festival, which returns to Mile High Station Thursday, August 8, from 6 to 8 p.m. with its message of water conservation. Organized by the Conservation Colorado nonprofit, the fest will feature a beer made by Joyride Brewing especially for the event. A 4.2 percent ABV session-style pale ale, the beer is made with 95 percent Colorado ingredients. Tickets to the festival are $35 (or $80 for VIP) and available at nightout.com.

click to enlarge Deepali Lindblom brings the Himalayas to the Rockies. - COURTESY OF DEEPALI LINDBLOM
Deepali Lindblom brings the Himalayas to the Rockies.
Courtesy of Deepali Lindblom
After a journey from India to Sweden and Montreal, Deepali Lindblom landed in Colorado, where she found her place in the Rocky Mountain West by putting down roots among Aurora’s diverse immigrant and refugee populations. Once settled, she formed Roshni, an outreach program bringing people of different ages and cultures together through dance — specifically, Bollywood dance. Lindblom and her ensemble will now tackle full-blown theater with Mountains Made for Us: From the Himalayas to the Rockies, a scripted Bollywood-style romantic comedy that runs Thursdays through Sundays from August 8 to 18 at Vintage Theatre, 1468 Dayton Street in Aurora. Catch Lindblom’s infectious dance fever while you can; find showtimes and tickets, $10 to $40, at roshniislight.org.

Friday, August 9

Fort Collins continues to seal its reputation as a music hub with the return of the Bohemian Foundation's Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest. This year’s edition will be headlined by Bonnie Raitt, Tank and the Bangas and Andrew Bird, who will be joined by more than eighty Colorado artists, including the Reminders, Xiuhtezcatl, Lettuce, Flaural, Pink Hawks, Hazel Miller, Porlolo and more. The free — yes, you read that right — festival goes from Friday, August 9, through Sunday, August 11, at various venues in downtown Fort Collins. In addition to the bands, more than 200 booths will offer crafts, art and food, and there will also be a family-friendly Kids’ Music Adventure and Kids’ World entertainment area. For locations and a full schedule, go to bohemiannights.org.


click to enlarge Fly high at the Breckenridge International Festival of Arts. - COURTESY OF THE BRECKENRIDGE INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF ARTS
Fly high at the Breckenridge International Festival of Arts.
Courtesy of the Breckenridge International Festival of Arts
Breckenridge comes alive in unexpected ways during the annual Breckenridge International Festival of Arts, a nine-day cultural spectacle starting Friday, August 9, that uses the landscape as a backdrop while musicians play in trees and dancers rappel down mountainsides. This year, an environmental theme will be showcased in installations by eco-artists Daniel McCormick and Mary O’Brien; on the musical front, DeVotchKa and DJ Spooky will perform. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about BIFA is that almost everything is free (DeVotchKa is a ticketed event, with admission price of $30 to $35); visit breckcreate.org for a complete schedule.

The 2019 Biennial of the Americas is still weeks away, but you can get a taste of what’s to come when the nomadic Empathy Museum brings its interactive A Mile in My Shoes exhibit (designed to resemble a giant shoebox) to Denver's streets for a stay from Friday, August 9, through September 27, in keeping with this year's BotA theme of “Empathy in Action.” You can literally walk in the shoes of anyone from a dairy farmer in Worcestershire to a sexual healer in Melbourne, all while listening to a recording of the shoe owner’s story. A Mile in My Shoes will be accessible daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Tail Tracks Plaza, on 16th Street between Wewatta and Wynkoop streets near Union Station. Admission is free; find details at biennialoftheamericas.org, and learn more about the exhibit and the A Mile in My Shoes podcast at empathymuseum.com.

It’s a guaranteed hot time when the Colorado Firefighter Calendar hosts its annual release party, and the Smoke & Fire bash to introduce the firefighters in the 2020 edition already looks like a scorcher. Kathie J, co-host of Jammin' 101.5, will emcee the bash on Friday, August 9, starting at 6 p.m. in the Seawell Ballroom in the Denver Performing Arts Complex, where the featured firefighters will strut their stuff down the runway. VIP tickets are $75 (which get you in the door early at 6 p.m. for a meet-and-greet with the firefighters and also guarantee a seat); general admission tickets (standing room only for the show, which starts at 8 p.m.) are $35. Buy them in advance at cofirefightercalendar.org, or pay $10 more at the door; either way, it’s all for a good cause: the Burn Center and Burn Camps program at Children’s Hospital Colorado.

Sway to the sounds of samba, bossa nova and choro when the Colorado Brazil Fest returns for its tenth annual tribute to the dance, music and cuisine of South America's largest country. The concerts, workshops and al fresco feasts begin Friday, August 9, with free festivities scattered along Boulder's Pearl Street Mall, including thrilling martial arts performances from Bateria Alegria and Capoeira Canavial. The party continues at venues along the Front Range, starting with Brazilian jazz from Sonya Vallet, Los Profugos Galacticos and the Dexter Payne Quintet at 7 p.m. Saturday, August 10, at Dazzle, 1512 Curtis Street in Denver, and an outdoor barbecue and Samba Jam at 1 p.m. Sunday, August 11, at Boulder Beer Company, 2880 Wilderness Place in Boulder. Mônica Salmaso and Guinga co-headline the festival's biggest concert, at 8 p.m. August 16 at Broomfield Auditorium, 3 Community Park Road, and the month-long party winds down with Danilo Brito and an evening of traditional choro back at Dazzle on September 12. Visit coloradobrazilfest.org for tickets and more information.

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