Mushroom and dance festivals, art shows and a gourmet soup kitchen: Tricia’s Weekend Picks 8/5/22 |

Mushroom and dance festivals, art shows and a gourmet soup kitchen: Tricia’s Weekend Picks 8/5/22

See new works at the Vail Dance Festival, learn how to identify mushrooms for meals and enjoy dinner al fresco

Vail Dance Festival

The first week of the 34th annual Vail Dance Festival was full of performances on the stage at The Amp and the Vilar Performing Arts Center, Dancing in the Streets, Dancing in the Park, podcasts, Master Classes, debuts of new dance companies and more. This weekend, make your way to The Amp and the Vilar Center for three nights of performances featuring collaborations and new works that can only be seen in Vail.

The Vail Dance Festival’s signature event, International Evenings of Dance I and II, has expanded to three performances, one on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. and two on Saturday at 5 p.m. and at 7:45 p.m. The programs will be different both nights and even the 5 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. show on Saturday will offer the audience something unique during each performance.

Marian Faustino of Dance Aspen in “Press Play” by this year’s Vail Dance Festival Artist-In-Residence Caili Quan on Opening Night of the Vail Dance Festival.
Christopher Duggan/Courtesy photo

“The spirit of creative adventure is a hallmark of our Festival. In addition to innovative new works by some of the most celebrated female chorographers working today, we will also debut an exciting collaboration between Justin Peck and bluegrass star Chris Thile, who will perform live alongside the dancers at our final two performances this season,” said Damian Woetzel, artistic director of the Vail Dance Festival.

Tickets for these two nights will be very popular, so go to for tickets and to see who is performing and to see the casting and programming details.

On Sunday, DanceAspen, one of three companies that made their debut at this year’s Vail Dance Festival, will be showcased at the Vilar Performing Arts Center. DanceAspen was formed as a new collective of professional dancers from the former Aspen Santa Fe Ballet. In the spirit of collaboration, Artist-In-Residence Caili Quan has been working with the DanceAspen on a new piece called “Press Play.”

“We are excited to share our highlights of our first year as a new company, it has been an incredible year, and to be invited to this prestigious festival at this time in our development is beyond our wildest dreams,” said Laurel Winton, executive director of DanceAspen.

When the weekend ends, the Vail Dance Festival keeps going with two more performances on Monday and Tuesday. NOW: Premieres brings back cast members Robbie Fairchild, Patricia Delgado, Tiler Peck, Lil Buck, Lauren Lovette, Roman Mejia, and more. These dancers are coming from different dance genres and dance companies and take this opportunity to push themselves to try new works.

One of the goals of the Vail Dance Festival is to make dance accessible to as many people as possible. In addition to the free Dancing in the Park at Nottingham Park last Thursday and several free fringe events like Dancing in the Streets, Dance for $20.22 prices pavilion seating at $20.22 and lawn seats go for $10.22. This is a wonderful introduction to not only the dancers but also the musicians who will be performing alongside the dancers on stage such as Chris Thile of the Punch Brothers. New dance companies like DanceAspen and Ephrat Asherie will also wow audiences one more time and the festival will close with a world premier by Justin Peck and Thile.  

Beaver Creek Art Festival

Over 100 artists will be showing their works at Beaver Creek this weekend from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Beaver Creek Art Festival/Courtesy photo

Art lovers will marvel at the amazing works that will be found at the 34th annual Beaver Creek Art Festival this weekend. Artists from around the nation and even some international artists will be in attendance which gives event goers a chance to meet them and learn about their craft. Painting, jewelry, sculpture, wood working, glass work and more will be found in Beaver Creek Village.

The festival will bring in over 100 artists and the art tents will spill over from the Beaver Creek Plaza level and run along the base of Beaver Creek Mountain. Some artists may even be in the middle of creating their next project, so it is a perfect opportunity to ask questions about their technique.

The group of artists was selected by an independent jury, ensuring that the art showcased will be from a wide variety of mediums and price points. The show will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Make a day of it and do a hike while you are there or keep the kids occupied at the base are of Beaver Creek Mountain with activities like mini golf, bungee trampoline, climbing wall and gem panning.

This event is produces by Howard Alan Events, producer of the nation’s finest juried art shows. For more information on the event, go to

Eagle Mushroom and Wild Food Festival

The Eagle Mushroom and Wild Food Festival has been a popular event since it began 14 years ago.
Daily file photo

Probably the hottest ticket in town this weekend is for the Eagle Mushroom and Wild Food Festival, if you can even get a ticket! Many of the events in this festival sell out in advance but as of press time, there was still some availability at a few of the offerings.

The Eagle Mushroom and Wild Food Festival has been held the past 14 years and the event brings in experts from around the nation to talk about the fungus among us. The Rocky Mountains provide a fertile landscape for mushrooms to thrive and many hikers turn their workout into a hunt the that evening’s dinner. The Eagle Mushroom and Wild Food Festival aims to help those curious about mycology to gain some knowledge about how to identify mushrooms that are safe to eat, how to cook with them and the benefits they provide.

The guided forays are already sold out, but Tom Boni, who started the festival, is trying to make the event more accessible and added a new event this year at Eagle Town Park on Saturday. Boni will be at the Town Park showcasing the bounty of mushrooms gathered from forays earlier in the week. He invites people to stop by starting at 3 p.m. and bring in their own mushrooms they’ve found on their hikes and let Boni help identify them.

Also on Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m., the event will feature mushroom and wild food vendors with mushroom tastings and chef presentations. There will also be free live music from 7 to 10 p.m.

Also on Saturday, as of press time there were still spots available for some of the cooking classes being held at the Zealous Schools in Eagle Ranch at 12:15 and 2:30 p.m. For the schedule and ticket information, go to  

Empty Bowls

Area emergency service workers will be serving up the soups at Empty Bowls, a benefit for the Vail Valley Salvation Army’s food pantry.
Vail Valley Salvation Army/Courtesy photo

One of the motto’s at the Vail Valley Salvation Army is “need knows no season” and although we think about the Red Kettle campaign during the holidays as a major fundraiser for the local charity, assistance is needed year round. Empty Bowls is a delicious way you can help provide financial assistance to the Vail Valley Salvation Army so they can help provide assistance to others.

Held at the Battle Mountain High School cafeteria, an Empty Bowls ticket will get you soup, bread and dessert from some of the valley’s fabulous restaurants. You will also get to pick a bowl from the multitudes of shapes and sizes that local potters have been busy creating for the event.

Participating Restaurants:

  • Pickled Kitchen & Pantry
  • Sweet Basil
  • Michel’s Bakery
  • Alpine & Antlers, Beaver Creek Lodge
  • Grand Avenue Grill
  • Stoke & Rye, The Westin Riverfront
  • Cornerstone Chocolate & Confections
  • Harvest, Sonnenalp Club
  • Bully Ranch, Sonnenalp Vail
  • Avon Bakery & Deli
  • Splendido at The Chateau
  • Foods of Vail
  • Sweet Mustache
  • Columbine Bakery
  • Four Seasons Resort & Residences Vail

Tickets are just $25 for your meal and a keepsake that you can take home to serve up dips, salsa, salad, or store things like jewelry or keys in, just depending on how big of a bowl you picked. The empty bowl reminds us that the food banks and the resources at the Vail Valley Salvation Army are always in need. 100% of the ticket sales will go to the Vail Valley Salvation Army’s food bank. There will also be a silent auction with items from nearly a dozen area businesses.

Serving the meal will be those who serve the public. The Emergency Service crews from around Eagle County will be dishing up the soups, breads and desserts. Make sure to thank them for all they do for our community while you are there.

The event runs from noon until 1:30 p.m. and it can be a bit crowded at the beginning, with people oftentimes standing in line to get in right at noon, so don’t fret if you aren’t there at the start, there will be plenty of food and pottery bowls for you when you get there. For more information, go to

Creekside Dinner

Grand Hyatt executive chef Pierson Shields, left, prepares dishes with guest chef Orlando Benavidez of Bits & Pieces Con Cerveza, center, at a Creekside Dinner in 2021
Grand Hyatt Vail/Courtesy photo

“Tis the season for al fresco dining. Take advantage of the summer weather and enjoy some fabulous views along Gore Creek with the Creekside Dinner Series being offered by Grand Hyatt Vail. On Friday, The Grand Hyatt Vail welcomes Denver’s Orlando Benavidez of Bits & Pieces Con Cerveza.

Benavidez worked alongside Grand Hyatt executive chef Pierson Shields last year during the inaugural season of the Creekside Dinner Series. The pair has come together again to create a multi-course menu with wine parings. Some of the highlights for this Friday’s dinner include crispy plantain roasted beets with a charred carrot chile vinaigrette over chef’s local greens, pork cheek carne adobada, seared halibut with mole verde. To finish off the meal, try the churro donut with burnt salted caramel and red chili citrus chocolate.

There are only 30 seats sold at each dinner to keep it an intimate setting and to allow personal interactions with Chef Shields and Chef Benavidez. The cost is $150 per person and reservations can be made by calling 970-476-1234 or book your tickets on Eventbrite.

Speaking of outdoor dining experiences, there are a few more left at The Sebastian on Wednesdays. On Aug. 10, there will be a south of the border barbecue theme with make your own (and all-you-can-eat) tacos and on Aug. 17 they are hosting a seafood barbecue and shellfish boil with lobsters, fish, clams, shrimp and more.

The Vail Farmers Market and Art Show has two more Farm to Table Dinners to attend. Take advantage of the bounty of delicious, seasonal and local ingredients in this chef-crafted dinner sourced from the fields of Colorado farmers. Dinner will be held rain or shine on Willow Bridge Road on Aug. 12 and Aug. 26 from 6 to 8 p.m.

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