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Five things to do in Denver and BoulderA

Ted Alvarez
newsroom@vaildaily.com
Eagle County CO, Colorado
Special to the DailyAchille Lauro brings their lush indie-rock/smoky-jazz-blend to Denver's Walnut Room on Friday night.
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Achille Lauro built a steady following in Denver by sticking to the basics ” music, music, and more music. While practically imageless themselves, their lush indie-rock/smoky-jazz-blend conveys rich images by itself: City lights glowing on a lonely night, a clandestine embrace in a barely lit alley and dark clouds on a Sunday morning all come to mind. Achille Lauro supplements the usual guitar-bass-drums-keys configuration with whatever instruments fit their mood, from glockenspiel to horns. Singer Matt Close’s initially gentle, raspy scat can ease from whisper to roar at a moment’s notice, and the semi-reclusive frontman guides this post-rock quintet into new territory. After an extended hiatus from the scene, Achille Lauro return to the excellent sound and superb atmosphere of the Walnut Room, which should amplify the size and scope of this powerful quintet. If you haven’t seen them, you should, and if you have, it’s been too long.

What: Achille Lauro performs.

Where: Walnut Room, Denver.



When: Friday, 8 p.m.

Cost: $12.



Info: Visit http://www.thewalnutroom.com. Visit myspace.com/achillelauro for song samples.

The holidays might represent fun, togetherness and merriment, but the annual gluttony of hectic gift shopping can sometimes become anything but. Luckily there’s the Boutique for the Soul, a free networking-mixer/holiday-shopping event that will include vendors selling gifts of jewelry, healing blankets and wines at affordable prices. Even better: while you look for the best healing gift for you and yours, you can soothe yourself with a massage, or try the free food and wine on hand to give you a little burst of vim and vigor. Acupuncturists, massage therapists, and nutrition counselors will all be in attendance to both peddle their wares and give you free test drives and a reason to come back. Even if you don’t buy anything, you’ll get a goodie bag loaded with treats like coupons and certificates for two-for-one massages. It’s guaranteed to be the most relaxing way to go about your holiday shopping.

What: Boutique for the Soul.



Where: Resonance Center for Bodywork.

When: Friday, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Cost: Free.

Info: 720-308-9998 or http://www.resonancebodywork.com or http://www.boutique4thesoul.com.

Fruitcake has a reputation for being the most hated of Christmas gifts, and usually for good reason: It’s dry, crumbly texture and potpourri-flavored fruit often insure that it tastes like, well, crap. But Louisville bakery A Grande Finale wants to change all that. First, they start by making their own fruitcake from scratch, with ingredients that actually taste good, like pineapple, papaya, mango, cherries and pecans, which then gets soaked in brandy for seven days. To try and revolutionize the Christmas world with their fruitcake, A Grande Finale will host a March For Fruitcake rally in downtown Louisville, all to bring awareness to the much-maligned dessert. The first 20 people to show up for the march get a free commemorative t-shirt; the rest get to sample an incredible fruitcake that you could even give ” surprise ” as a gift.

What: March For Fruitcake food sampling and rally.

Where: A Grande Finale Patisserie, Louisville.

When: 2 p.m., Saturday.

Cost: Free.

Info: 303-926-4084 or visit http://www.agrandefinale.com.

The English, Irish and the Scottish often get lavish ethnic spectacles the public can attend around Christmas time; heck, even the Germans get to throw down with their apple strudel. But what about the Welsh? Not content to be forgotten as “the other Celtic tribe,” the Colorado Welsh Society will host a traditional Christmas tea party, which features copious servings of the namesake beverage along with Welsh songs, hymns, seasonal readings, music and traditional dances. We know tons of you out there are Welsh, as immigrants came from Wales to help construct Colorado’s railroads and work in their mines. Going strong for over 24 years, the Christmas tea allows Welsh and Welsh-curious alike to delve into the fascinating Christmas tradition borne from the mists of Wales.

What: Colorado Welsh Society Christmas Tea.

Where: St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Denver.

When: Sunday, 2:30 p.m.

Cost: Free, but donations are accepted.

Info: http://www.coloradowelshsociety.org.

As one of the most famous photographers in the world, the Brazilian-born Sebastião Salgado has dedicated his work to capturing and chronicling the suffering of downtrodden peoples for decades. His work has appeared in countless magazines and publications, but his black-and-white depictions of human struggle and plight are expressive works of art that live beyond their paper origins. In addition to documenting coal miners, oppressed indigenous people, and those dying of hunger in faraway places, he’s also captured some of the most pristine wildernesses on the planet, reminding us what we have to lose if we don’t become better stewards of this Earth. Large-scale work from Salgado’s latest project, Genesis, as well as some pieces from Migrations, Workers, will be on display at the Camera Obscura gallery in Denver through Dec. 31. Don’t miss your chance to see one of the world’s most important photographers.

What: Photo gallery display of the work of Sebastião Salgado.

Where: Camera Obscura Gallery, Denver.

When: Daily through Dec. 31.

Cost: Free.

Info: 303-623-4059 or visit http://www.cameraobscuragallery.com.


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