Things to do in Denver this weekend, May 12-15, 2022
The weekend kicks off with glamor at a Dairy Arts Center fundraiser celebrating its 30th anniversary and ends with an all-new festival showcasing Colorado’s Asian and Pacific Islander community. Along the way, you can say hello to StarFest, which is taking off after 45 years.
Check out our list of free things to do here and keep reading for ten events worth the price of admission:
Look: sparkling, glamorous, give away!
Thursday, May 12, 5:30 p.m.
Dairy Arts Centre, 2590 Walnut St, Boulder
After thirty years, the Dairy Arts Center – a former dairy converted into a multidisciplinary center with performance spaces, a quartet of galleries, classrooms and a cinema – exemplifies what a medium-sized cultural center should look like. The Peek Fundraiser aims to make that happen, raising money at an event with Boulder’s panache. On a journey through the spaces of the Dairy, revelers will be fed, refreshed and entertained by Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance, comedian Kevin Fitzgerald, the Victor Mestas Trio, the Catamounts theater company and special art installations by local artists . And then it’s off to a 70s dance party. Tickets are $150 here.
Women + Cinema Awards Luncheon
Friday, May 13, 11:45 a.m.
South Sturm Pavilion, Denver Art Museum, 100 West 14th Avenue Parkway
With Denver Film’s Women + Film festival over, it’s time to replenish the festival coffers to ensure a fabulous lineup of women’s films next year. This effort begins with an awards luncheon this year, recognizing veteran actress Rita Moreno with the Barbara Bridges Inspiration Award, as well as Carlotta Walls LaNier, who will win a Women + Film Impact Award as the youngest member of the Little Rocks. Nine, who sought admission to Little Rock Central High School in 1957. Admission is $125 (VIP tickets are sold out); get tickets and learn more here.
Star Party 2022
From Friday 13 May to Sunday 15 May
Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center, 7800 East Tufts Avenue
StarFest leaves the galaxy after 45 rotations around the sun, making this year’s final throes at the Hyatt Tech Center a must for all local nerds in love with the multiple genres of sci-fi and fantasy, a StarFest specialty. Comics, games, sci-fi art, Harry Potter, cosplay, space science, Klingon culture – whatever genre you’re looking for, StarFest has it. Special guests this year include a star trek triumvirate of Terry Farrell (Jadzia Dax), Michelle Hurd (Raffi Musiker) and Brent Spiner (Data). Ticket prices range from $25 to $175, with optional add-ons for special events available; bring them here.
Living in Culture | or something Artist Flea Market
Friday, May 13, 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Vision Quest Brewing Company, 2510 47th Street, Boulder
This native-owned BIPOC flea market from thriftorsomethin and MyCultureMyRules is the hippest thing in the Republic of Boulder, with people selling vintage, upcycled and designer clothes, original art, jewelry, crystal infused candles and herbal oils, tarot readings, plants and books, to name a few. Add to that the promise of Puerto Rican fare and Southern barbecue, plus live music and DJ Scoopa spins, and you’ve got a luxury house party. A $15 donation is requested at the door to show appreciation from the artists; Learn more here.
Grapefruit Lab, Pity + fear: a parody
Friday May 13 and Saturday May 14, 7:30 p.m.
Buntport Theater, 717 Lipan Street
Grapefruit Lab, the theatrical collaboration of Julie Rada, Kenny Storms and Miriam Suzanne, returns to the stage with a three-weekend series of Pity + fear: a parody, a performance written by Suzanne with music and lyrics by Josselyn Cool. Personal myth about life in queer and trans culture is explored, with three independent Greek myths about princesses named Agraulos – a source of fascination for the playwright – surrounding the central story. Suzanne and Cool are the only performers on an austere stage, with only a guitar, few props and a deep dive into queer identity. Performances continue on weekends through May. Grapefruit Lab sells tickets on a nominal price basis; learn more here.
DCPA Theater Company, Don Quixote Nuevo
Open from Friday May 13 to June 12, every day except Monday
Wolf Theater, Denver Performing Arts Complex
If Don Quixote and Pancho Sanchez, obsessed with chivalry, came seeking glory in the modern frontiers of Texas, what would it be like? by Octavio Solis Don Quixote Nuevo tells the story with the kind of righteous humor that American immigrants reserve for their white oppressors, as scholar Cervantes José Quijano and his sidekick Manny Diaz, a street paletero, chase an illusion among zoot-suited pachucos and evil border patrol agents. The colorful play runs for a month at DCPA’s Wolf Theater; find information and tickets, $10 to $77, here.
Black Sound Series: Camille Norment, Untitled (red flame)
From Friday May 13 to June 18
Lane Screening Room, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, 30 West Dale Street, Colorado Springs
CSFAC’s three-part Black Sound series concludes with a five-week series by Oslo-based black sound artist Camille Norment Untitled (red flame). The multi-channel installation engages with altered recordings of human speech rendered into something more like a human firestorm for justice and positive change. Visit the facility Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; the required museum admission fee of $5-$10 includes admission to all other galleries. RSVP here.
Expanded Stories: A Symposium on Contemporary Abstract Painting
Saturday May 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Holiday Theater, 2644 West 32nd Avenue
Indigenous artists Eamon Ore-Giron and Dyani White Hawk’s exhibitions at MCA Denver both suggest rich insights into the nature and cultural narratives of abstraction in the American modernist tradition. Tap into these inherent revelations with Ore-Giron, White Hawk, Clyfford Still Museum Director Joyce Tsai and MCA Curator Miranda Lash during a half-day symposium at the MCA Satellite Theatre. After a morning of talks in a rotating duo, lunch will be served in the hall before a final round table. Admission is $25-$30 here.
Asian American and Pacific Islander Festival +
Saturday May 14 and Sunday May 15 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Denver Zoo, 2300 Steele Street
The Filipino American Community of Colorado (FACC) and the Denver Zoo are teaming up to celebrate the diversity of Colorado’s Asian and Pacific Islander community. Festival events range from a Filipino folk dance to a healing sound workshop, a jewelry-making workshop, and a tai chi show. The festival is included with regular admission to the Denver Zoo; learn more here.
Chalk lines and vines
Saturday, May 14, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, May 15, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Arapahoe County Fairgrounds, Central Green Event Center, 25690 East Quincy Avenue, Aurora
More than fifteen Colorado wineries will serve samples as chalk artists rock the sidewalk during Chalk Lines & Vines, an art and wine event that will brighten up the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds. Food trucks will be by your side, or just bring your own picnic to eat while you consider whether or not to buy a bottle of your favorite sip, and live music completes the party. Tickets range from $10 to $35 in advance here and go up to $40 at the door.
Know of a big event in Denver? We’ll be updating this list throughout the weekend; send information to [email protected]