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27 family-friendly events in Denver this week

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There are a lot of holiday event kick-offs like the Christkindl Market and Switch on the Holidays and Festival of Trees. See our event calendar for more information.

Also, don’t miss Family Travel: 40+ Holiday Vacation Ideas in Colorado and Denver guide to the holidays: Santa Arrivals & Christmas events!

A Broadway Christmas Carol at CU Presents
Nov 15  – 22 
What the dickens happened to Scrooge? He sings (show tunes), he dances (time steps and classic Fosse), he turns into a ham (and we’re not talking spiral-cut). In an event that’s perfect for both the young and young at heart, Charles Dickens’ famous festive tale is whipped into a holidaze confection, peppered with hilarious parodies of dozens of your favorite Broadway songs.

Signing Santa at Cherry Creek Shopping Center
Nov 20 – 21
Cherry Creek Shopping Center is proud to continue the tradition of providing deaf and hard-of-hearing children with a very special visit with Signing Santa.

The Polar Express at Colorado Railroad Museum 
Nov 20 – 24
The story of The Polar Express is being theatrically re-created so you and your family can be immersed in the sights, sounds and intrigue of this classic children’s tale. Prepare to be surrounded by the magic and wonder of the holiday season!

Free Day at Plains Conservation Center 
Nov 21, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
This Aurora-based center helps students and adults grow their knowledge and appreciation of the prairie ecosystem and the cultural history of Colorado through a variety of educational programs managed by Denver Botanic Gardens. In cooperation with the City of Aurora.

Aspen Academy Presents Beauty and the Beast Jr. at Aspen Academy 
Nov 21, 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
The classic story tells of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed to his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will be doomed for all eternity.

DEN Free Ice Skating Rink at Denver International Airport, open-air plaza between the terminal and Westin 
Nov 22, 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
Lace up your skates and start practicing your axels, jumps and spins as the free ice skating rink on the Denver International Airport (DEN) outdoor plaza returns for its fourth season. DEN invites passengers and community members to join in on the winter fun this season.

Christkindl Market at Skyline Park
Nov 22  – 23 
This annual event brings authentic German and European holiday traditions to Denver! This market opens every year on the Friday before Thanksgiving, and lasts through the 23rd of December. Guests can find delicious cuisine, festive German drinks, handmade jewelry, toys, clothing, gifts and much more. Live entertainment is featured inside the festival tent every evening, and dancing is highly encouraged.

Brewery Lights at Anheuser-Busch Biergarten and Tour Center 
Nov 22 –24
The holiday lights are lit, the cocoa is hot, and the 30-foot inflatable snowman is back – it’s beginning to look a lot like Brewery Lights at the Anheuser-Busch Biergarten and Tour Center in Fort Collins! The fifth annual Brewery Lights celebration begins Nov. 15, with guests of all ages invited to spread holiday cheer at a variety of festive activities during the wonderful holiday experience.

A Christmas Carol – The Musical at Arvada Center for the Arts & Humanities
Nov 22, 6:00 – 8:30 pm
Bring the whole family to enjoy this holiday classic. Charles Dickens’ classic tale takes us on a journey to the past, present and future this holiday season! With music by Alan Menken ( Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid ) and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens ( Ragtime, Seussical ), this musical version of curmudgeonly Ebenezer Scrooge’s life and ultimate redemption is the perfect holiday tradition for the entire family.

Denver Nuggets vs. Boston Celtics at Pepsi Center 
Nov 22, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Denver Nuggets vs. Boston Celtics at Pepsi Center.

Sugar Plum Bazaar at Denver Mart Drive-In 
Nov 23 – 24
Sugar Plum bazaar is a makers market featuring over 120 vendors from multiple states. About 95% of the items sold are handmade and all are small independent businesses.

Festival of Trees at Evergreen Memorial Barn 
Nov 23, 1:00 – 3:00 pm
The Barn will be open to the public for a free viewing of the trees and will include visits with Santa. Vote for your favorite decorated items and help determine People’s Choice awards for the Festival.

Annual Tree Lighting + After Party at Cherry Creek Shopping Center 
Nov 23, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Join us to kickoff the holiday season with Nick Ferguson at Cherry Creek Shopping Center! Enjoy hot chocolate, sweet treats, and entertainment as we countdown to the lighting of our 60’ Christmas tree! Then, gather inside for an after-party and more festivities!

Colorado Avalanches vs. Toronto Maple Leafs at Pepsi Center 
Nov 23, 5:00 – 6:30 pm
Colorado Avalanche vs. Toronto Maple Leafs live at the Pepsi Center!

Switch on the Holidays at Pearl Street Mall 
Nov 24, 5:00 – 6:00 pm
Kicking off the Holiday season, Santa counts down the grand illumination of the Boulder County Courthouse and the Pearl Street Mall.

Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns at Pepsi Center 
Nov 24, 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns at Pepsi Center.

Black Hawk Holiday Lighting at Stroehle Square Gazebo 
Nov 25, 5:00 – 6:00 pm
Celebrate the start of the holiday season in Black Hawk. Help us count down and light the holiday lights. The Gilpin School choir will perform holiday favorites! Hot chocolate, cider, and cookies will be served!


A Christmas Carol at Simpich Showcase
Nov. 8 – Dec. 4
A CHRISTMAS CAROL’s timeless narrative is brought to life with sparkling vitality on the Simpich stage with over twenty handmade marionette actors animated by Dickens himself. In this original adaptation by puppeteer David Simpich, Ebenezer Scrooge is launched into and transformed by a night of delightful and poignant Christmas remembrances and foreboding forecasts. The outcome is both a continuing inspiration and celebration of the Promise of the Season.

Ella Enchanted at the Arvada Center
October 11-December 29, 2019
Join Ella as we journey to the fairytale land of Frell on a path to self-discovery! The stage musical of Ella Enchanted has recently been adapted from the beloved Newbery Honor book by Gail Carson Levine. Ella must navigate her world with the “gift” of complete obedience given by her misguided fairy godmother. Adventures will ensue with ogres, giants, elves, wicked stepsisters, and true friends that help Ella find her voice! These whimsical characters make this a captivating tale for children and adults of all ages.

Night Light Denver at the Daniels & Fisher Tower
Nov. 7 – Jan. 31, 2020
The Denver Theatre District’s ongoing, year-round projection mapping installation will be projected on the Arapahoe Street side of the Daniels & Fisher Tower every Thursday through Saturday evening. Night Lights Denver will include rotating content, designed by artists and the community, featuring a wide range of art.

Goodnight Moon at the DPAC/The Randy Weeks Conservatory Theatre
October 4, 2019 – February 16, 2020
A musical twist on the beloved bedtime story. For the past 72 years, families around the world have made Goodnight Moon a part of their bedtime ritual. Now, the beloved children’s book comes to life on stage for a musical adventure! As the clock strikes seven o’clock, it’s time for Bunny to go to sleep. Say goodnight with magical moments filled with songs, kittens and mittens, bears and chairs, a red balloon, a quiet old lady, and – of course – the moon in this delightful tale.

 Extreme Sports: Beyond Human Limits at Denver Museum of Nature and Science

September 13, 2019 – April 12, 2020
“Extreme Sports: Beyond Human Limits” takes guests inside the minds and bodies of extreme athletes to explore the psychology, physiology and physicality of some of the most extreme activities in the world. In this high-energy exhibition, guests experience the thrill of extreme sports in exciting, interactive exhibits and immersive environments. Meet passionate athletes, hear their incredible stories and take in the artistry, motivation and thoughtfulness that goes into everything they do.
Tiger Encounter at the Denver Zoo
Nov. 8 – Dec. 31, 2019
Experience The EDGE through the eyes of a tiger! This tour will take you behind the scenes at The Edge, Denver Zoo’s Amur tiger exhibit. You will get an up-close view of a training session with one of The Edge’s resident tigers and learn from animal care experts about what they do every day to ensure that these cats receive the best care. You’ll be in awe of the amazing relationship animal care staff have with these 400-pound furry felines! Please note that because of safety regulations, guests will not receive direct contact with the tigers, but rather will get a closer look than public perspective allows with exclusive access and interactions.

Christmas in Color at Bandimere Speedway
Nov. 15-Jan. 4, 2020
Load up your friends and family into the van (or car, or truck) and experience Christmas like never before. Drive through acres of more than 1.5 million lights perfectly synchronized to holiday music you’ll hear right through your radio. You’ll drive by giant candy canes, snowmen, arched pathways and more. It’s like being immersed in another world. In fact, we won’t judge you if you join the kids with your face pressed against the window. 

Images from the Tracks at the Colorado Railroad Museum
January 28, 2019 – January 5, 2020
One of the foremost photographers to photograph the great American West, William Henry Jackson’s images had an immense influence on the public’s perception of the American West. A portion of those images were captured here in Colorado as Jackson traveled throughout the west by rail. This exhibit not only showcases the Museum’s collection of Jackson photographs but provides visitors with the opportunity to visit the rail car he traveled and lived in – the Denver & Rio Grande Western business car – the Rico.

Marine Biologist for a Day at the Downtown Aquarium
Jan 1- Dec 31, 2019
See if you have what it takes to become a Marine Biologist! Spend a day behind the scenes where all the scientific action happens. Experience close encounters with exotic species from the deep sea to shallow reef and everywhere in between. You’ll even get to dissect a squid! The program includes a guided tour, biologist dive show, squid dissection, animal feedings and much more! T-shirts & lunch included.

First Light Family Space at the Denver Art Museum
Through May. 31, 2020
Step into the shining world of the new First Light Family Space and try hands-on activities inspired by the exhibition, The Light Show. Trace a shadow, make a mirror, play with patterns and create a colorful city. The museum offers free general admission to kids 18 and younger.  Have fun learning about artwork with gallery games similar to I spy, bingo, and memory matching with Gallery Games. Create Playdate’s artmaking with little ones is on the second Wednesday of the month from 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

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