The first Improv comedy club had virtually nothing to do with comedy. Broadway producer Budd Friedman founded the now legendary franchise in 1963 as an intimate spot for performers to eat, drink coffee, and sing along to piano ditties after their shows. Soon after, the club?s first comedian, Dave Astor, performed on a whim to try out new material. The stand-up set was a hit and led to the venue?s eventual transformation into a full-blown comedy club. New York?s hottest comedians would do nearly anything to be featured on the Improv stage; for instance, it's rumored that Lily Tomlin hijacked a parked limousine in order to make a stunning entrance when first meeting Budd.
A recent addition to the respected chain of Improv comedy clubs?where comedic heavyweights such as Andy Kaufman, Jay Leno, and Jerry Seinfeld first started working the stand-up circuit?Denver Improv lives up to the reputation set by its preceding locations by hosting a full calendar of well-known comics and promising up-and-comers. Audience members can fuel laughter with pub grub such as potato skins and pulled pork sandwiches, all while sipping a cocktail to avoid eye contact with the giant rubber chicken sitting at the next table.
It's a good idea to arrive early at Movie Tavern, and not only if you hate missing the opening credits. Early birds can peruse the extensive menu of chef-crafted American cuisine, from kobe beef sliders to pizza and sandwiches. But even after the show begins, the snacks keep coming. Unobtrusive servers slip in during the show to deliver orders, and can be called on for more drinks or dessert with the push of a button. Guests can even sip margaritas or signature cocktails at the full bar before heading in to the theater. The family-friendly establishment also serves finger food for kiddies.
As for the entertainment, audiences get to enjoy all-digital presentations of first-run films any day of the week, plus Retro Cinema every Wednesday morning at 11:30 a.m. as well as Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 7:30 p.m. Audiences also benefit from Movie Tavern's membership program. Anyone can sign up for free online to receive one free bag of popcorn, plus a free ticket every year on their birthday, special offers, movie news, and invites to screenings and other special events.
You never know who might be in the audience at Midtown Arts Center—it could be Broadway devotees taking in a performance of Sweeney Todd, families watching The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley, or comedy fans chuckling to Monty Python's Spamalot. The center is able to support such a diverse program thanks to a pair of theaters, a 200-seat auditorium that hosts kids musical-theatre classes and the Young Audience Series, and a 236-seat dinner theater. In the latter, servers present gourmet meals from a menu that includes blueberry baked brie, braised pork shanks, and even creme brûlée. Before dinner, guests can hang out at the full bar and lobby, beautifully decorated spaces that perfectly complement a 200-seat ballroom that can be reserved for weddings or massive games of musical chairs.
It was 1958 and John Bandimere, Sr.'s family business needed somewhere to test their auto-repair and maintenance work amid their shop's barren, hogback surroundings. Though the strip of pavement they constructed aided many oil changes and tune-ups, Bandimere, Sr. had another motive for purchasing the land around it. He wanted to give young people a safe and hands-on environment where they could learn about cars and racing.
Nowadays, his modest strip of pavement—dubbed Bandimere Speedway—adjoins seating for 28,500 spectators, complete with a VIP tower with suites and 60-inch LED scoreboards. Clamorous engines dominate the racing space, which hosts more than 125 yearly events on the quarter-mile, all-concrete drag strip. Sanctioned by the NHRA—which is responsible for teaching hot rods how to handle firearms safely—the speedway also hosts the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals.
Blue Dolphin Swim School?s crew of swim-savvy instructors teaches novice aquanauts to navigate waters in a small-group setting. Unite with motivated moms and dads who take fresh-picked babies?ages six months to two-years young?for a dip in a four-week session of water-entry classes. Each 30-minute class lets guardians guide little ones through the water, gently splashing faces and singing songs. Immersing babies in the aqueous warmth of 90-degree water evokes familiar memories of being in the womb, and learning breath-holding techniques makes it easier to frequent their favorite watering holes.
Two reusable swim diapers are mandatory for all classes, and may be purchased on site for an additional fee at the Blue Dolphin Swim School.