After you get your champagne and smooch on for New Year's Eve which could be achieved at any number of clubs and bars around town, if you haven't been invited to a house party yet you'll likely be spending the first part of New Year's Day rehydrating after a good sleep. Can't say there's much happening around town, so your best bet's to either find a friend with a nice HD television to catch some bowl games or to see a movie. Or, if you're of Southern heritage like me, cook up a pot of black-eyed peas for good luck in the new year. My mom always does, and we haven't been abducted by aliens or Homeland Security yet. (Though can't say we've won the lottery, either ... lousy peas.) MS
Maybe your resolution for '09 demands that you get a little more culture. Because maybe you're trying to impress someone, or just bored to tears at home watching QVC. Red silicone bakeware does not high design make. (Even if nothing sticks to it.) Take the opportunity tonight, then, to visit downtown galleries for the First Friday Artwalk. We recommend stopping by Cottonwood Artists' School (25 Cimino Drive) from 5:30 to 8:30 for the free opening reception for its Holiday Miniature Show, a multimedia exhibit of works by instructors and studio artists. Call 520-1899 or visit cottonwoodartistsschool.com. EA
Everybody loves puppets except, of course, for a small subset of the people who fear clowns. Michael Gunst's Four Wishes appears far more interesting than your average Punch 'n' Judy shtick, it being an adaptation of a Native American tale in which four puppets seek out their protector in search of special powers and eternal wisdoms. Plus, how many events can boast post-performance milk and cookies with the artist? Catch the performance at 11 a.m. or 2 p.m today, or at 1 p.m. or 3 p.m. Sunday, at Manitou Art Theatre's new-ish location (1367 Pecan St.). Tickets are $9, free for kids 2 and under. Call 685-4729 for more info. BF
The phrase "On All Fours" bears many connotations. In relation to the comedy, fashion and art event benefiting the Pikes Peak Derby Dames from 6 to 10 tonight at Phantom Canyon (2 E. Pikes Peak Ave.), I'm guessing it means either: You'll be on your hands and knees laughing at local comedian Chris Cox and touring comedian Jim Wiggins, aka The Last Hippie; or the Dames, modeling clothing from Eve's, Barracuda Bazaar, Zzing, Idor and Envi, will be on skates. (Four wheels duh.) I doubt it means that contributing visual artists Alberto Leopizzi and Marc Huebert will prostrate before guests in hopes of selling works. (Sad, that according to many local artists, it's nearly come to that lately.) Anyhoo, nab your ticket recently reduced to $25 to the 21-plus show at 387-7212 or opticalreverb.com. MS
Over the holidays, maybe your toddler ran over your sleeping cat with his new remote-control car. Or your 8-year-old got all mouthy with Grandma. Or you heard your teen was bumping and grinding at a New Year's Eve party. Dr. Robert Evans knows all about this stuff even that "freak dancing," as he calls it in Family Matters: How Schools Can Cope with the Crisis in Childrearing and he's ready to help. At 7 tonight at the Louisa Performing Arts Center (21 Broadmoor Ave.), Evans will talk about "Parenting in the 21st Century," and how parents and schools can work together to help kids mature. The lecture's free; hey, you're probably paying plenty in lost sleep already. Visit css.org for more. KW
Start preparing yourself now for April's 2009 Indie Spirit Film Festival by revisiting some of the best independent films from last year's fest. Start on Sunday with winners in two categories: Punch (Best Foreign Language Film) and Vaccine Nation (Best Documentary). Free screenings begin at 1:30 and 1:45 p.m., respectively, at the East Library (5550 N. Union Blvd.). Then top that off at 7 tonight with Minotauro, winner of the festival's big award Best Feature Film at Venue 515 (515 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs). Tickets are $5 or $6. The Independent Film Society of Colorado will show other award-winners in February, March and April, so visit ifsoc.org or call 502-7057 for a complete schedule. JT
For so long, growing your own food seemed like a foreign concept for most city-dwellers. Heck, I grew up in a farm family, and even we never cultivated our own food, except for the always-fresh eggs from our chicken houses. Today, our family probably would have a full-blown garden as well. Anyone, but especially west-siders with an interest in growing their own food, should check out the Old Colorado City Community Garden information meeting at 6 p.m. in the Old Colorado City Library (2418 W. Pikes Peak Ave.), free and open to all. For more on this Pikes Peak Urban Gardens project, go to ppugardens.org or call 651-3416. RR
This week's 7 Days contributors: Edie Adelstein, Bill Forman, Ralph Routon, Matthew Schniper, Jill Thomas and Kirk Woundy.