Club Nights

Club Directory

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The Castle: 83 E. 120th Ave., 303-452-1002, Thornton. Though it revels in the royalty of local touring talents in the world of electronic music, the Castle can't quite shake its hotel-conference-room appearance. That's because it is a hotel conference room, adjoining a suburban Radisson. An upstairs area is open to the over-21 set, while youngsters are welcome on the ground floor; images projected on large screens, fancy light shows and solid talent might help you overlook the chairs stacked against the wall and the sound of the bar vibrating from the loud music.

Catacombs: 2115 13th St., Boulder, 303-443-0486. As the name suggests, Catacombs is a series of little caverns winding beneath the über-swank Boulderado Hotel. Because it's one of the few remaining bars in Boulder to allow smoking, the rock bands that play here are only part of the draw of this collegiate mainstay.

Celtic Tavern: 1801 Blake St., 303-308-1795. You don't have to be Irish in LoDo, but it sure doesn't hurt, particularly if you're looking to avoid the sports-bar crowd. In keeping with the Gaelic theme is the Celtic Tavern, which eschews a green-beer motif in favor of decor that incorporates literary works from the Emerald Isle's finest. The shamrockless venue offers a cozy, Welsh-inspired nook and a leather-sofa-filled Scottish room for other bastards of the British Empire.

Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom: 2637 Welton St., 303-297-1772. The latest in a group of family-owned venues designed with the discerning Deadhead in mind, Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom is a mixture of glam and jam. Housed in the former Casino Cabaret in the Five Points neighborhood, the large room hosts well-known local hippie-esque artists normally seen on the festival circuit.

El Chapultepec: 1962 Market St., 303-295-9126. Spicy, satisfying and hot describes the Mexican food at El Chapultepec, as well as the live jazz that emanates from the closet-sized room every night of the week. Easily Denver's most authentic jazz club, the ´pec hosts the city's finest players and tightest combos, who swing for shoulder-to-shoulder crowds, especially on weekends. The music leans to the traditional, and so do the tastes of purists who show up to listen in this dim, vintage gem.

Charlie Brown's Bar and Grill: 980 Grant St., 303-860-1655. A corner piano bar in Charlie Brown's Bar and Grill is where locals drop by to offer sauced renditions of Tin Pan Alley songs or just consume strong cocktails. Once favored by Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady, Charlie's now draws one of Denver's most diverse crowds, including art students, career drinkers and singers who turn up for karaoke.

Chautauqua Dining Hall: 900 Baseline Rd., Boulder, 303-440-3776. Chautauquas -- cultural and self-improvement centers -- were hot properties in the nineteenth century, but only three remain in the entire country, including the Boulder Chautauqua, founded in 1898. The 26-acre campus is centered on a grand Victorian dining hall, featuring great views of the Flatirons, a menu of American standards and live jazz Tuesdays through Sundays.

Cheers: 301 Main St., Longmont, 303-651-0580. Yes, this local franchise of a national chain does resemble the other Cheers, but the crowd is more likely to be Longmont toasted than Boston tony. Rock, jazz and acoustic offerings plump up the calendar in the rough-around-the-edges tavern, which otherwise revolves around drinking.

The Church: 1160 Lincoln St., 303-832-3528. Stained-glass windows and hundreds of candles spread throughout the Church suggest a pious vibe, but the congregation is as mixed as they come. The roomy Lincoln Street mainstay draws globally hailed DJs, local residents, retro-lovers, even the under-21 set: Sections of the bar are open to those eighteen and up. A rooftop patio affords one of the city's best views.

Climax Lounge: 2217 Welton St., 303-292-5483. The Climax Lounge has a broad vision. By mixing high and low, the Five Points club has hosted theatrical performances alongside pinball competitions and performances from a wide range of local and national artists. There's a full arcade for game lovers, too.

Club 156: CU-Boulder UMC, Broadway & Euclid, Boulder, 303-492-8619. There's a bizarre little world in the bowels of the UMC, the University of Colorado's student center, now that Club 156's reopened after a two-year hiatus. Punk and indie-rock bands dominate the stage in this all-ages, smoke-free space, located right next door to a bowling alley.

Club Corner: 6551 W. 44th Ave., Wheat Ridge, 303-463-9969. A neon confection in no-man's-land Wheat Ridge, Club Corner tries hard to be Denver's Coyote Ugly, but the ceiling over the bar is just too low for women to dance under. Barkeeps make do by stapling up the unmentionables that female patrons turn over in exchange for a free drink and an earful of live country music.

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