Boats, beer and books on the culinary calendar this weekend

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In the fields at Rocky Ford.The big food news: Colorado cantaloupe season kicks off today, when pickers hit the fields to start harvesting Rocky Ford cantaloupes. "We love it when people come experience our famous cantaloupes at one of our grower's markets, but those who can't make it to Rocky Ford will find fresh field-ripened melons at King Soopers, City Market, Safeway and Whole Foods over the next six weeks," promises Michael Hirakata, president of the Rocky Ford Growers Association.

In the meantime, there's plenty to eat and drink in Denver this weekend.

See also: - Ten festivals you don't want to miss this summer - Photos: Colorado Dragon Boat Festival 2012 - Photos: Winter Brew Fest at Mile High Station

Friday, July 26:

The Old Town Parker Wine Walk is taking place this evening on Mainstreet in Parker. For $15 you will get a signature wine-tasting glass and 10 tokens for 10 wine samples, as well as coupons and deals from Parker business owners. You can buy tickets online or at the start of the event at 19590 East Mainstreet. For more information call 303-841-4268.

Enjoy unlimited beer tastings at the Summer Brew Fest at Mile High Station, 2027 West Lower Colfax Street, from 7 to 10 p.m. tonight. The fest will celebrate 125 brews from over 45 craft breweries; there will be food, live local music and other vendors on hand, too. General admission tickets are $30 in advance, and $35 at the door (cash only). VIP tickets ($40 in advance, $45 at the door) get you in at 6 p.m. for an extra power hour. Find more information here. Saturday, July 27:

Kids getting bored of summer? Send them to Tamarac Turnips, a free interactive cooking class from 2 to 5 p.m. today at Whole Foods Market Tamarac. where they'll learn to make such cooling snacks as slushies, banana ice cream and cucumber boats. To reserve a spot for your child, stop by the store at 7400 East Hampden Avenue or call the customer-service desk at 303-488-2000.

Get some education yourself today at the Denver Central Library, 10 West 14th Avenue, where from 10:30 am. to noon chef Shellie Kark will teach how to become more conscious of food in the lecture "Better Living Through Ignoring Chemistry: How to Stop Being Part of a Dangerous Experiment." After the class, the library will show the documentary Hungry for Change at 12:30 p.m. Admission is free; for more information, call 720-865-1206 or go to the DPL website.

Saturday, July 27-Sunday, July 28

Colorado's Dragon Boat Festival is once again taking over Sloan's Lake this weekend with 54 dragon-boat teams. But the races are just part of the fun. There will also be live entertainment and vendors -- including many food vendors in the Taste of Asia Food Pavilion.

And at 3 p.m. July 27, the judges -- Lori Midson, Jeff Osaka of twelve and Mary Nguyen of Parallel 17 -- will pick the best entree, best dessert and best in show at the pavilion. And this year, they'll also choose the Dragon's Choice for the best dragon-themed dish!

Keep reading for a list of the Taste of Asia Food Pavilion vendors.


Aloha Shave Ice Company Hawai'ian - Authentic Hawaiian Style Shave Ice Cones with authentic local flavors (Li Hing Mui, Lilikoi) alohashaveiceco.com Our owners are father and son team Edward and Brannon Aki, who are transplants from Kaneohe, Hawaii. We sell Hawaiian style shave ice cones. Our shave ice is the softest snow you will ever taste, with authentic Hawaiian flavors you'd find in Waikiki or Haleiwa on the North Shore.

A Taste of the Philippines Lumpia - hand rolled Filipino style egg roll with home made sweet & sour sauce; Turon - fried banana; Chicken or pork adobo- chicken/pork in vinegar, soy sauce and garlic; Pancit - vermicelli noodles with vegetables; Bistek Tagalog - top round beef with lemon juice, soy sauce and onions; Manok sa gata - chicken in coconut milk, garlic, ginger and bamboo shoots; Ginulayang shrimp - veggie stir fry with shrimp. A Taste of the Philippines' goal is to introduce the Filipino culture through a food cart located in downtown Denver.

Alpine Sausage Company Smoked German Bratwurst; Swiss Veal Weissurst; French Swiss Bratwurst; Louisiana Hot Links Alpine Sausage Company is a family-run business that has been around for over 40 years. We make and sell sausages and cold cuts from all around the world. Our business is open to the public 6 days a week.

Baker's Palace Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwiches: Thit Nuong - Grilled Pork; Ga - Chicken Baker's Palace is a family-owned business. We have been operating for 15 years. Our bread is freshly baked each and every day. We sell a wide range of Vietnamese Sandwiches. Your choices range from Chicken, Pork, Beef, to Vietnamese ham--which is topped off with sweet and sour carrots & daikon, jalapenos, cucumber, and cilantro.

bd's Mongolian Grill Kung Pao Beef, Teriyaki Chicken, Ginger Veggie gomongo.com bd's is a create your own stir fry restaurant located in LoDo on Wazee. It is from the ancient tradition of "hunt, gather, cook, feast" that one of the world's most original dining experiences, bd's Mongolian Grill, was born. bd's unique fun comes from YOUR ability to create your own "feast" from a variety of choice meats and seafood, fresh veggies, and flavor-packed sauces, all freshly cooked before your eyes (Mongolian-style) on a large, flat grill!

Colorado Buffalo Grill American - Buffalo burgers, brats and hotdogs, French fries, cheese fries, fried zucchini and okra, fire crackers, funnel cakes coloradobuffalogrill.com We are ranchers and producers raising the buffalo here in Elizabeth, Colorado, that is used in our product. We serve at fairs and festivals throughout the Denver Metro area.

Dae Gee Korean BBQ Galbee Plate - Marinated beef short ribs with various sides and cabbage salad; Galbee Salad - Salad Greens and various vegatables with Galbee on top; Steam Dumplings - we are trying to go healthy therefore they will NOT be fried. We are also incorporating several super foods to the dumplings for your health concept this year. daegee.com Dae Gee - (which means pig in korean) is a Korean BBQ restaurant constituted in providing the freshest and dynamic food available. Dae Gee - Pig Out!

Denver Hmong Alliance Church Hmong Sausage; Stuffed Chicken Wings; Purple/Black sticky Rice; Eggrolls; Fried Rice; Lotus flower cookies The Hmong Christian and Missionary Alliance and its local Church since 1982. The organization is a Non-profit 501(c)(3).

Denver Thai Lions Club Thai - Pad Thai; Curry with Rice; Fried Crab Cheese Wonton; Combination Plate (Pad Thai, Curry, Rice, Fried Crab Cheese Wonton); Thai Iced Tea The Denver Thai Lions Club is a local chapter of Lions Clubs International, a network of 1.3 million men and women who work together to answer the needs that challenge communities around the world.

Hot Wok Singapore noodle; Chicken Dumpling; Pork and Shrimp Fried wonton; Pork Eggroll www.hotwok.us Hot Wok Cafe is a family-owned business since 1994. Located in Fort Collins, we strive to serve the best quality Asian food in Northern Colorado.

Imperial Chinese Restaurant Chicken eggrolls, sesame chicken with rice, vegetable lo mein, and steamed rice http://www.imperialchinese.com The Imperial Chinese restaurant has been serving fine Chinese cuisine since 1985.

Little India Food Truck Chicken Tikka Masala, Saag Paneer, Veggie Korma facebook.com/littleindiafoodtruck Little India Food Truck brings the fine Indian cuisine that you know and love from the Little India Restaurants out to great events, such as this! We offer guests' favorites from Chicken Tikka Masala, Saag Paneer, and Veggie Korma! Entrees come with Basmati Rice and Naan! Traditional drinks such as Mango Lassi and Chai are offered along with sodas and water.

Lollicup Tea Zone Denver Serving Bubble Teas and Smoothies: Bobas (tapioca pearls) served with tea, milk teas, and slushy drinks lollicupdenver.com Lollicup Denver has been serving Boba drinks in the Denver area since 2003. Our store location offers a wide selection of flavors and drink add-ins, including our most popular bobas. These sweet and chewy tapioca pearls can be added to milk teas, slushes, snowbubbles, or iced tea for an unusually delightful drink experience.

The Orange Crunch Filipino - Crunchy deep fried empanadas; lumpia (Filipino eggrolls); Fried Nanners (bananas); Camote (Sweet Potato bites deep fried with honey on the side); crackling pork belly; chicken or pork adobo; pancit (noodles) theorangecrunch.com The Orange Crunch, LLC is a fun and creative food product company aimed at offering the highest quality, made to order Philippine-style empanadas with the freshest natural ingredients. We view ourselves as loyal, honest and committed to each of our customers, our environment, our community to include financial donations to local and international non-profit organizations. We take full responsibility in offering the best service around. We are Westword's 2013 Best Food Cart; 2012 CDBF Culinary Award Winner Best In Show; 2012 CDBF Culinary Award Winner 1st Place Entree.

Queen of Vietnamese Martyrs Parish Five spice & honey glazed meatball; Grilled lemon grass beef skewer; Grilled Chicken shish kebab; Vietnamese pork egg roll; Combination BBQ bowl; Fried rice with meat & Veg, more... giaoxudenver.org We are Queen of Vietnamese Martyrs Parish founded in 1990. We are located at 4655 Harlan St. Wheat Ridge, CO 80033. Our community is more than seven thousand parishioners. "The food of Vietnam" Over many centuries, Vietnam has been occupied & Colonized by China, Mongolia & France. During these periods of dominating foreign influence is how the unique Vietnamese cuisine you find today evolved.

Smooch Frozen Yogurt & Mochi Frozen Yogurt, Mochi Ice Cream & Fruit Pops www.smoochco.com Smooch offers premium non-fat frozen yogurt, 21 flavors of mochi ice cream and artisan fruit pops.

Thai Pepper

Monkey Balls; Thai stick; spring roll; Pad Thai; more Thai Pepper home of the MONKEY BALLS.Come and joy us. Let us ring the bell for you "MONKEY BALLS!!" ding!ding!ding!

The Original Berrie Kabob

Berrie Kabob- strawberries and bananas on a skewer drizzled with white and milk chocolate; frozen cheesecake on a stick drizzled with milk chocolate Our company does special events all over the U.S. including: Coors Field/ Colo. Rockies; Pepsi Center- Denver Nuggets; Colo Avalanche; Taste of Colorado; Cherry Creek Arts Festival; Texas State Fair

The Dragon Boat Festival runs from 10 am. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Find more information on the Dragon Boat Festival website.

For information on dozens of culinary events around town, visit our online Food & Drink listings -- and if you have information for a culinary event you'd like included in our online calendar, send it to cafe@westword.com.

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