- Hang out with your favorite saggy rockers, The Rolling Stones.
Seattle resident Wally Shoup lived in Colorado a while back, and he became enthralled with the Pikes Peak region's geology. From this experience, Shoup developed a style of landscape that's colorful, textural and downright humorous. Don't believe me? Get to the Smokebrush Gallery (218 W. Colorado Ave., in the Depot Arts District), before his Postcards from Seattle goes off display tomorrow. The gallery hours vary, so give Smokebrush a call at 444-1012 or visit smokebrush.org for more.
Warren Miller has made quite a niche career for himself, filming skiers, splicing the footage together with a slammin' rock soundtrack, then showing and selling the resulting movies to skiers who like to watch other skiers ski. He then laughs all the way to the bank. His latest dose of alpine porn, Higher Ground, is being shown tonight and tomorrow at the Pikes Peak Center (190 S. Cascade Ave.). Higher Ground features such household names as Jeremy Nobis, Seth Morrison, Shane McConkey and Glen Plake, all descending mountains for your viewing pleasure. Tonight's show starts at 8 and tickets are $19.50, available at the Pikes Peak Center box office, all TicketsWest outlets or online at ticketswest.com.
Whimsy is largely underrated. These days, everyone's all seriousness this and earnest that and, "Oh, God, I shot the legs off your dog." Take the time for a flight of fancy once in a while. Start at the Buell Children's Museum in the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center (210 S. Santa Fe Ave., Pueblo), where until Dec. 31, its annual Everything Nutcracker exhibition is showing. Here, you can marvel at more than 50 hand-painted nutcrackers, create your own to take home, visit the World of Nutcracker Sweets, dress up as characters from Tchaikovsky's ballet, visit a frosty forest, and just inject some general whimsy into your weekend. Admission is $3 for kids and $4 for adults. For more, visit sdc-arts.org or call 719/295-7200.
Today, round up your loved 'uns and get to the Carnegie Reading Room at Penrose Library (20 N. Cascade Ave.) for a talk and book signing with author Beth Barrett. She's the co-author (with her late husband, Daniel Barrett) of High Drama: Colorado's Historic Theatres. The book is, as you might've guessed, a look at Colorado's historic theatres. The 2 p.m. event is free and open to the public, and refreshments will be served. Visit ppld.org or call 531-6333 for more.
When I was in junior-high concert band, we played an Andrew Lloyd Webber medley. I, honking my alto saxophone to "Music of the Night," thought this was the absolute bee's knees, second in coolness only to the theme song from Northern Exposure, which we also played. (This helps explain why my pubescent years were mostly bereft of nookie.) Were I so inclined, I could relive those halcyon days at the Buell Theatre (1050 13th St., Denver), where Phantom of the Opera is showing until Dec. 4. A special show is going on tonight at 8, and tickets range from $26 to $71. For more information, tickets and additional showings, visit denvercenter.org.
If ever a cover band could generate a cult following, Nerdbomb would be that band. Years ago, a friend of mine waxed rhapsodic about them as we drank at Tony's, their usual haunt. "They're not just like a cover band," she said. "They're magical." (We'd had a lot to drink.) She went on to talk about how they cover everything, and, while my memory of the evening is hazy, I do think I remember her talking about either Toto or Britney Spears. Catch the magic for yourself tonight at 9 at Tony's (311 N. Tejon St.), where the Leinies flow like wine and there's no cover.
Perhaps the only thing to cheer me up after Fox's canceling "Arrested Development" would be the Rolling Stones tonight at the Pepsi Center (1000 Chopper Circle, Denver). I'm still learning to forgive them for Steel Wheels, but their newest offering, A Bigger Bang, actually is getting decent reviews, proving that you don't need youth or your own hips to rock. Tickets for this one start at $60; a limited number of $400 tickets are available, which, for the cost, should entitle you to a post-show bubble bath with the band. Get yours at any Ticketmaster outlet, by calling 520-9090 or online at ticketmaster.com.
-- Aaron Retka