Recognized by Examiner.com as one of Denver's top five hidden theater gems in 2010, the intimate John Hand Theater seats guests close enough to the action to absorb every line and offer hugs to actors after particularly emotional scenes.
Derby was reborn in the early 2000s as a ferociously fun sport. Nearly all modern leagues are composed of female, DIY-spirited bands of punky costumed, vicious-monikered rascals who shove each other on traditional quad roller skates. The Rocky Mountain Rollergirls, Denver's original all-women flat-track roller derby league, is operated by the more than 40 skaters who makeup its six teams: home teams Red Ridin' Hoods, Sugar Kill Gang, Dooms Daisies, Kill Scouts, and traveling teams, Fight Club and the Contenders. These fearless athletes leave bouts with sprained shoulders, bruises, and hematomas, which is nothing compared to the competitors' pain (the ladies took home second place in the 2009 Women’s Flat Track Derby Association regional tournament and fourth in the national tournament).
The multitalented Aurora Fox Theatre Company presents the Colorado debut of The Wedding Singer, choreographed and directed by Emmy nominee Mandy Moore of Fox's So You Think You Can Dance. Based on the 1998 Adam Sandler film of the same name, The Wedding Singer is a charming and energetic musical comedy that follows the romantic trials of New Jersey wedding singer and rock-star wannabe Robbie Hart in the year 1985. As Hart attempts to woo Julia, a beautiful and kind waitress, away from her boorish fiancé, the cast will kick into the sweet sounds of original songs, including "Somebody Kill Me," "Grow Old with You," and a three-hour version of "Mambo No. 5." Also codirected by Moore’s sister Missy, this production promises to push the creative boundaries of typical community theater, as the stage will be set on a special rotating carousel, the script will be rife with '80s nostalgia, and the entire story will be narrated by Batman as he slowly sips on a glass of Scotch.
Ranked the No. 3 best thing to do in Denver by U.S. News & World Report, Denver Zoo hosts 3,500 different animals from more than 650 species, which blend with several interpretive exhibits. Sprawling naturalistic displays place animals in environments approximating their native habitats, giving a glimpse of exotic locales and diverse behavioral patterns. The Tropical Discovery exhibit boasts a 2,250-gallon pool teeming with piscine life and exotic turtles in a waterfall-lined indoor rainforest. Two prides of lions sprawl along rocky outcroppings in the lion kopje in Predator Ridge while African wild dogs, guineafowl, and spotted hyenas play a heated game of Yahtzee. Commune with ancient cousins in the seven-acre Primate Panorama, where chattering monkeys swing from trees while powerful gorillas amble freely about their one-acre exhibit.
The course itself carries on that fun vibe, too. Winding through city streets and local parks, the 5K route is dotted with hydration stations that dole out hot chocolate. Holiday music, a giant Santa inflatable, and snow blowers help to set
On April 10, 2012, the Central Hockey League announced the Denver Cutthroats as the league's newest member. A little more than six months later, on October 19, the team played its first game ever—a 4–3 overtime loss to the Missouri Mavericks. Despite the outcome, the game marked the return of hockey to Denver Coliseum, which hadn't been skated professionally since the IHL's Denver Rangers' 1988-89 season. As an affiliate of the Colorado Avalanche, the Cutthroats—a name chosen in honor of Denver's state fish, the Greenback cutthroat trout— immediately developed a connection with local hockey fans. Fans get to share their support directly with The Stream, a place right outside the home team's locker room covered with inspirational messages and lasagna recipes inscribed on paper fish by the Cutthroat faithful.