Things to do in Denver when you're talking like a pirate

Ahoy, mateys! In case ye landlubbers and scalawags are unaware, today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Founded in 1995 by Oregonians John Baur and Mark Summers -- also known as Ol' Chumbucket and Cap'n Slappy, respectively -- the parodic holiday has grown into something of a worldwide phenomenon. Woefully, BrethrenCon II (Denver's second annual pirate convention) has just passed, as has the Real Pirates exhibit at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. Nonetheless, there's no better day to talk like a pirate than this one, and we've put together a list of the top places in Denver to do so. Just remember not to confuse the poop deck with the head; that's rather poor form.

5. Cruise Room at the Oxford Hotel

The Cruise Room at the Oxford Hotel opened the day after Prohibition was repealed in 1933, effectively making it downtown Denver's first bar. It's also designed to look like one of the lounges on the Queen Mary. If that's not enough to make you talk like a pirate, you can also order grub from McCormick's Fish House next door.

4. Laurie R. King at the Tattered Cover

New York Times bestselling author Laurie R. King (that's "Arrrrgh" King, especially today) will be at the Tattered Cover's Colfax Avenue location today signing copies of her new novel, Pirate King. Attendees are encouraged to don their best pirate ensembles, sing along to sea chanteys -- and, of course, talk like a pirate!

3. Ship Tavern at the Brown Palace Hotel

The Brown Palace's Ship Tavern is a nautically themed bar that also serves up some pretty good prime rib, as well as iced oysters and seafood chowder, making it a great place to wash down cackle fruit and junk with some good ol' arrack and grog -- while, of course, talking in your best Pirate-speak. Arrrrgh!

2. Emerald Isle

Aurora's Emerald Isle boasts a huge deck overlooking the ocean -- ahem, we mean Aurora Reservoir, which is about the closest you're going to come to a beach in Colorado. Nonetheless, it's a great place to swill bumboo and hogshead, even though landlocked Colorado isn't much different to pirates than being shipwrecked on a deserted island.

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1. Black Bart's Cave at Casa Bonita

Black Bart, who lives in a cave inside Casa Bonita, might just be landlocked Colorado's most famous pirate. A visit to his eponymous cave is a seemingly requisite part of any Denver-area childhood -- and it's must-see on International Talk Like a Pirate Day. The food at Casa Bonita, however, might make you yearn for some hardtack, or even some leather.

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