Christmas rises from a turkey’s ashes |

Christmas rises from a turkey’s ashes

Ted Alvarez
Vail, CO, Colorado
Special to the Daily

Editor’s note: Ted Alvarez writes a weekly column for the Vail Daily, choosing his top five things to do in Denver. From music, to films and even art exhibits, Ted shares all that’s cool in the Mile High City.

DENVER ” This past Thursday, most of us ate our way to oblivion in full view of friends and family. We’re so stuffed that we need an outing to work it off ” say, to the Front Range. Art and music are on display as usual, but the passing of Thanksgiving truly marks the beginning of the Christmas season. Yeah, I think it’s too soon, too, but we’d all do well to ignore shop-happy Black Friday and catch a Yuletide classic like “The Nutcracker.”

Most folks don’t think of Colorado as a place where movies get made ” but more Hollywood productions film here than you might expect. (Even the green bridge in Red Cliff got featured in a quick aerial shot for the Dennis Quaid-Danny Glover thriller “Switchback.”) “Hollywood, Colorado,” a presentation that began on Nov. 20 at the Aurora Museum, chronicles the Rocky Mountain State’s place in vintage and modern cinema through posters, scripts and film clips and other curios. From classics like “The Searchers” to stinkers like “The Jar,” the museum’s got a piece of the “Action!” on display. Admission is free, and the display runs through February. For more information, call 303-739-6666 or visit

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s classic “Nutcracker” is almost as synonymous with the culture of Christmas as evergreen trees and that fat red guy who brings presents. The Colorado Ballet gives “your holidays a little shot in the sugarplum” with their adrenalized, exciting version of the tale, which sees Clara following her wooden prince to battle rats and visit the Sugarplum Fairy. Performances begin this Saturday and run through Christmas Eve. Ticket prices run from $19 to $145. For tickets and times, visit

Based on the movie featuring Irving Berlin’s classic tunes, this Buell Theatre musical embodies the Christmas spirit when two song-and-dance men in showbiz team up with a sister act to save a country inn. Toe-tappin’ numbers include “Sisters,” “Blue Skies,” “I Love a Piano” and the titular “White Christmas.” Performances run Friday through Dec. 30. Tickets ($10-$60) and information available at

A group of hard-up street people, including a war vet, a damaged woman, a mute child and a recent immigrant re-enact “A Christmas Carol” from a battered copy found nearby. This heartwarming play by Barbara Lebow takes on the Christmas classic and adds an urban spin, proving that holiday hope can be found anywhere. Opens on Nov. 23. Tickets are $22 and can be purchased at

Dede LaRue creates shiny interpretations of oddball creatures out of papier mache; they’re sometimes humorous, sometimes politically motivated. Her recent work, inspired by visits to glittering temples in Thailand, is coated in a brightly colored, mirrored mosaic. Both recent work and past pieces are featured at the Wilson Adams Gallery. For information, visit

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