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7 Days to Live


17 Thursday

Chanukah goodness

As a Jew not living in Israel, New York or Los Angeles, I've spent a good portion of my life educating those around me about the eternal mysteries of Chanukah. It's a damn shame I've spent so much time talking about Chanukah bushes. So I'm ready to tell it straight from now on. But rather than hear the truth from me, consider attending the lighting ceremony of Southern Colorado's largest menorah at 7:30 tonight at Chapel Hills Mall (1710 Briargate Blvd., You'll already be there doing your last-minute shopping, so why not eat a latke (an oily potato pancake rumored to fuel feelings of nagging guilt), or some gelt (chocolate coins symbolizing stereotypes of Jewish wealth), or play with a dreidel (a spinning top aimed at hypnotizing our enemies) while diggin' live klezmer music? (Oops, there I go lyin' again ... ) — MS

18 Friday


It's sort of like a rite of the season, one of those things you have to do: One way or another, you'll hear Christmas carols. This year, you might as well listen to the professionals rather than only to the freezing children on your doorstep. (Not that those brave souls are anything to scoff at; the pros are just something new.) Tonight you can join the Colorado Springs Philharmonic at the Pikes Peak Center (190 S. Cascade Ave., for its Christmas Classics concert. The show starts at 8 (with a second concert Sunday at 2:30 p.m.), and tickets run between $14 and $54, and, of course, singing along is encouraged. — JK

19 Saturday


For the six people (including me) who have never seen Amahl and the Night Visitors: Think of it as a spin-off episode to the story of Jesus' birth. New character Amahl meets second-tier players, the Three Kings, and learns about selflessness and the arrival of Christ. Conceived (immaculately, I'm sure) by Gian Carlo Menotti, this one-act holiday opera debuted on television in 1951 and ran annually on NBC until 1965. It continues in other capacities, including noon and 2 p.m. performances today by the Colorado Springs Conservatory at CC's Packard Hall (5 W. Cache la Poudre St., Admission is free, but do like Amahl and bring donations of non-perishable food items. If you can't make today's performances, check online for the full CSC schedule. — EA

20 Sunday


Just yesterday, I discovered Barbie in the Nutcracker. The best part of that pink-and-purple DVD presentation is Tim Curry — yes, Rocky Horror's Frank-N-Furter — voicing the Mouse King. I kept picturing tin soldiers doing the Time Warp. (Doesn't happen.) A more traditional option: At 1 and 5 p.m. today (with additional shows Saturday and Monday), Colorado's Classical Youth Ballet presents A Nutcracker Ballet and Holiday Tea at Rampart High School Theater (8250 Lexington Drive, There's no Tim Curry, but you will enjoy local favorite David Sckolnik narrating as Tchaikovsky. For $17 to $21, catch the classic, enjoy some treats and tea, and as Frank would say, "Give yourself over to absolute pleasure." — JT


Let's say you want to really impress someone special, or your family would like to share a quality holiday event with the cost basically being no object. Then it's worth considering A Classic Broadmoor Christmas, the resort's annual holiday performance. It's put together by Ken Miller, The Broadmoor's director of entertainment, and includes singer Lila Mori, The Broadmoor Pops Band, Colorado Springs Children's Chorale, jazz musician Nelson Rangell and more ( The show at the hotel (1 Lake Ave.) runs Friday through tonight, then Tuesday through Thursday (Dec. 18-20, 22-24), with the same schedule each night: cocktails at 6, dinner at 7, show at 8. Tickets are $68 for adults, $48 for children, including dinner. Call 577-5733 for reservations. — RR

21 Monday


Every winter night, we snuggle into our blankets, the thermostat at 65 degrees. And usually, we don't remember how lucky we are. Not only are many homeless fighting the cold outside, but some of them are remembering friends and family who died out there. Tonight at The Longest Night of the Year Memorial Service, we can remember them, too. Beginning at 5:15 p.m., at the Salvation Army Soup Run (corner of Pikes Peak Avenue and Spruce Street), participants can share dinner with one another, followed by a candlelight procession to the Bijou House. Tonight, we can sing, pray and reflect on those who often are forgotten. — LE

22 Tuesday


Imelda Marcos was known for her abundance of shoes. Warren Epstein's got his windswept necktie. And now Madeleine Albright has come out with a book devoted to her voluminous collection of pins, brooches and other things that stick to your lapel. The former secretary of state will be discussing and signing her new memoir, Read My Pins: Stories from a Diplomat's Jewel Box, during a 1 p.m. appearance today at the historic LoDo Tattered Cover bookstore (1628 16th St., Denver,, with free tickets being distributed at noon. Granted, this latest work may lack the gravitas of last year's Memo to the President Elect: How We Can Restore America's Reputation and Leadership, but it does go a long way toward answering the question, "Why does she always wear those big-ass pins on her book jackets?" — BF

23 Wednesday

kid beat

Here in Colorado Springs, we may lack some of the Christmas magic of New England. But one thing we have on those taciturn, pasty plum-pudding eaters is a huge deer population. And you can't get much closer to Santa than Dasher and Dancer and all of those guys, right? So if you've got a 2- or 3-year-old, consider taking him or her to this morning's 10 a.m. "Oh Deer!" indoor-and-outdoor activity session at Bear Creek Nature Center (245 Bear Creek Road, 520-6387). Among other things, you'll learn about what deer eat, look for tracks, and maybe see Blitzen wandering around the Bear Creek area. OK, you probably won't see a reindeer, exactly, but still — this is a cheap ($3), healthy, distinctly Colorado way to play up Santa mythology. — KW

Contributors: Edie Adelstein, Lora Elliott, Bill Forman, John Knight, Ralph Routon, Matthew Schniper, Jill Thomas and Kirk Woundy.

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