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From Oktoberfest to the BigWonderful, the Top Ten Events This Weekend

Oktoberfest rolls into the Balllpark neighborhood this weekend -- the 45th annual incarnation of the event that got its start in Larimer Square. And this is far from the only Oktoberfest in the metro area; the gang's all beer this time of year. You can also celebrate fall at a chile festival, a block party and a few tasty fundraisers. Keep reading for a hearty helping of this weekend's culinary calendar.

See also: The Ten Best Dog-Friendly Patios in Denver

Friday, September 19

Starting today and running through Sunday, and repeating next weekend, Denver will be throwing the second-largest Oktoberfest celebration in the nation. The 45th annual Denver Oktoberfest will feature stein-hoisting competitions, live music, dancing, food, keg bowling, plenty of beer and more. The party will take place between 20th and 22nd streets in the Ballpark Neighborhood. Admission is free but VIP packages are available; find out more here.

Today and tomorrow Fort Collins will be throwing its Oktoberfest celebration. Fortoberfest, which celebrates more than beer -- bikes and bands will also share the spotlight this weekend. The festival will run from 5 to 10:30 p.m. today and from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. tomorrow at Old Town Square in downtown Fort Collins. Admission to the event is free; find out more at downtownfortcollins.com.

Enjoy BookCliff Vineyards' award-winning wines paired with dishes from Eric Skokan of Black Cat Farm Bistro at this five-course wine dinner. Feast in the Vineyards will take place at 5:30 p.m. today at BookCliff Vineyards. Seats are $106.90; reserve yours by visiting the BookCliff website or calling 303-499-7301.

The twentieth annual Chile and Frijole Festival kicks off today in Pueblo, where it will run through Sunday. Festivities include cooking demonstrations and competitions, as well as chiles, of course. Find out more here.

Saturday, September 20

Vine Street Pub and the Uptown Neighborhood are throwing a Block Party and Brewer's Olympics today from 1 to 9 p.m. The block party benefiting New Era Colorado will feature a beer garden with more than a dozen breweries, live music, the brewers Olympics and more. The Olympic events will begin at 1 p.m. and music will be playing until 9 p.m. at Vine Street. Admission is free; for more information, visit mountainsunpub.com.

The Denver Flea and TheBigWonderful are teaming up to put on the ultimate weekend market today. There will be food trucks, culinary vendors, craft-beer stations, more than seventy craft and vintage vendors, and even a movie screening. The market will take place at Sustainability Park from noon to 6 p.m. Admission is free; you can find out more at denverflea.com.

The first-ever public brunch service from the award-winning team at Frasca Food and Wine is inspired by Carlin Karr's fond memories of long, festive brunches at San Francisco's Zune Café with fellow sommeliers and industry professionals. Frasca's Rose Brunch will start at 11 a.m.; reservations are $160. Call 303-442-6966 for reservations and more information.

Thrills and Pils will be offering guests unlimited samples of over eighty brews and all-day access to Elitch Gardens today starting at noon. Tickets for the event are $45.99 and Elitch Gardens pass holders can get theirs for $10. Get tickets here.

Wine and Whiskers, the annual fundraiser for Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue, a Denver cage-free, no-kill cat shelter, will feature a selection of Colorado wines produced at the Bonacquisti Wine Company, a wide choice of appetizers and small plates, live music, dancing and a silent auction. The event will purr from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. tonight at Bonacquisti Wine Company, tickets are $45 in advance, $50 at the door; grab yours here.

Sunday, September 21

The 3rd Annual Snooze Brunch in the Field will take place today at DeLaney Community Farms from 10 a.m. to noon. This farm-to-table fundraising event will feature brunch provided by Snooze and will benefit DeLaney Community Farm. This is a zero-waste event, so please bring your own plates and silverware -- and a picnic blanket.Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children. Get tickets and more information here.

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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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