Denver Divertissement

The Mile High city offers unique and enticing beguilements of its own for the spring escapist this season.

For an alternative to Park City this spring, you may want to look to the Mile High City, which has a bevy of cultural divertissement of its own before the summer months emerge.

In Denver, winter months give way to vibrant city life filled with cultural elements its particularly difficult to ignore. Snow-capped mountains are replaced with rustic terrain terrific for hiking. And adventure activities are likely to keep you stimulated for the duration of your stay. Yet arts and culture reigns supreme in Denver, CO each spring, and the level of cultural offerings to enjoy is nothing to shake a stick at. Take a look at the cultural experiences that await travelers this spring:

The largest U.S. art museum west of Chicago, Denver Art Museum (denverartmuseum.org) offers an impressive collection of modern masterpieces. It’s modern and contemporary collection encompasses more than a century of artistic innovation. With over 12,500 works in its holdings, the museum’s collection includes works by Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, Henri Matisse and Georgia O’Keeffe, among others.  This spring, the museum will present Natural Forces: Winslow Homer and Frederic Remmington. Featuring 60 works, the exhibition reveals connections between artistic themes and techniques used by the two acclaimed American artists, who captured the essential American spirit, born a generation apart.

On view at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, (dmns.org) The Science Behind Pixar offers a unique look at the Pixar process, examining the science and technology behind some of the most beloved animated films and their characters. The interactive show reveals the science, technology, engineering, art and math concepts employed by the artists and computer scientists who help bring Pixar’s award-winning films to the big screen. It has more than 50 interactive elements in eight sections, each focusing on a single step in the filmmaking process, giving visitors an unparalleled view of the production concepts used at Pixar day-in and day-out. The exhibition made its way to Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry last spring, so if you didn’t have an opportunity to view it then, here’s your chance.

Want a side of adventure with your arts and culture? Try the Denver Museum of Nature & Science exhibition Extreme Sports: Beyond Human Limits (through April 12). Physical, multimedia and creative challenges await visitors of this exhibition, which places guests inside the minds and bodies of extreme athletes and their passions like wingsuit flying, ice and rock climbing, parkour and free diving. Experience breathtaking heights, unbelievable depths and exhilarating speed in this mile-a-minute simulation.

Over at the Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities (arvadacenter.org), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (on stage through May 16), Shakespeare’s tale of love and mystical whimsey comes to vibrant life. Director Emily Van Fleet gives The Bard’s most popular romantic comedy an innovative and highly theatrical treatment this spring.

Lovers of classical music will indulge the joys of Beethoven this spring when acclaimed pianist Garrick Ohlsson sits down with the Colorado Symphony under the baton of Rune Bergmann making his debut with the orchestra. Bergmann conducts Ohlsson in a reading of Beethoven’s incredibly inventive Piano Concerto No. 4 on a program that also includes Mozart’s Overture to Don Giovanni and Nielsen;s Fourth Symphony.

For a fun bit of Denver history this spring, try “A Walking Whisky, History, and Outlaws Tour” (denverlikealocaltours.com). The 2-3 hour tour of Downtown Denver offers an examination of the Denver’s place in the Wild West, where dreams came true and whithered away. With gun fights, gambling and prostitution, Denver’s past is as exciting as it gets. The tour runs through summer 2020.

If you’re a foodie and find yourself in Denver City, you’ll want to try one of the hottest new eateries in town. Chef Cristino Griego’s European restaurant with French, Italian and Spanish small plates, Della Radice (dellaradice.com) has an incredibly inviting menu that features everything from charcuterie to house-baked bread to Mediterranean comforts made with local ingredients and lots of passion. The renovated space offers a communal wine bar with a market offering pasta, sauces, cheeses, meats, pickles and quite a bit more to explore. Any way you slice it, Denver is a great place to visit, but during the spring, the city comes alive with a vibrant atmosphere and engaging activities hard to imagine for a place so well ensconced in the romanticism of winter wonder.