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28 Thursday

music

I would never describe myself as a country music fan, and yet the Eli Young Band's Level album found its way into my car's CD player and hasn't budged. The tracks range from mellow to bouncy, but each one is great for rocking out to with the windows rolled down. Level blends the strong country spirit of EYB's first album with the more mainstream sound of 2008's Jet Black & Jealous, which includes top single "Guinevere." Listen for new material at 9 tonight at Cowboys (25 N. Tejon St.). Tickets (21-plus) are $19 at the door and $16.50 online at csnightclubs.com. — Leah Barker

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29 Friday

art

Dia de los Muertos is a time of options. For instance, you can grab some of the 30-or-so ingredients that make up a good mole and celebrate with the classic from Oaxaca. Or go the masa-and-meat route — tamales are never wrong. For spiritual pleasure, you could rock the altar: gold and yellow marigolds, calacas (skeletons) and candles. Or you can skip all that and head to the Cottonwood Center for the Arts (427 E. Colorado Ave., cottonwoodcenterforthearts.com) for its Day of the Dead all-media art exhibition, up through Nov. 17. It opens at 5 tonight, and includes traditional Mexican dancers. — Bryce Crawford

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30 Saturday

music

No one forgets Darryl Worley. It may be because of his "Have You Forgotten?" No. 1 country hit, but it also might be due to those Playgirl photos he shot in 2007. His trips through Colorado are fairly regular, though this visit is part of his 2010 God & Country Tour, a series of free shows being performed at Army posts across the country. Military and civilian families alike can see a fully clothed Worley at 8 tonight in the McMahon Theater at Fort Carson (Building 1517, McDonald St., darrylworley.com). It's first-come, first-serve, so pack up the kids early to make sure you get one of the 900 seats available. — Kirsten Akens

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31 Sunday

music

Up in Denver, Slim Cessna's Auto Club is popular enough to pack the Bluebird Theatre every New Year's Eve. But down this way, they're relatively unknown, which is why they get a lesser holiday, Halloween, for their show at the Black Sheep (2106 E. Platte Ave., blacksheeprocks.com). As co-originators of the "Denver Sound," they've shared members with bands like 16 Horsepower, Wovenhand and DeVotchKa. But even that doesn't prepare you for the spectacle of Slim Cessna and Munly ringleading this frequently hilarious, yet never condescending, take on Southern Gothic revivalism. In exchange for your righteous $10 tithing, Slim and the boys' all-ages 8 p.m. show is guaranteed to put the Pentecostal fury back in post-modern party music. — Bill Forman

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1 Monday

kids

In the real world, if you give a 4-month-old cat half a chocolate cupcake, you may wind up on ask.com, trying to find out whether that cat is going to die. ("Best Answer": It "may give your kitty a tummy ache, perhaps even diarrhea.") But if you're immersed in Laura Numeroff's If You Give a Cat a Cupcake story, you'll encounter more complicated circumstances. See them unfold onstage at the Pikes Peak Center (190 S. Cascade Ave., pikespeakcenter.org, $8-$15) at 7 tonight, as the Omaha Theater Company puts on If You Give a Cat ... to open the Imagination Celebration's 2010-11 Over the Moon Family Theater season. Arrive an hour early for fun in the lobby. — Kirk Woundy

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2 Tuesday

art

When I tell people I studied art in France, the most common reaction is, "Well, aren't you coughspoiledahem lucky?" In a way, you'll be even luckier if you visit the Business of Art Center (513 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs, thebac.org), which currently features works from women, Scots, military kids and semantics junkies. (Hey, compare that to the Louvre and its bevy of dead white guys.) Go before Nov. 27 to catch FEMME and New Works by Sarah Milteer; you have until Jan. 15 to see Children of the Military: Life in Transition, and Word Art by David Thomason runs 'til Jan. 8. All exhibits are free and open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays. — Claire Swinford

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3 Wednesday

outdoors

"Desert Towers is about the desert towers of the Colorado Plateau, those crazy, skinny, very temporary rock formations that stand like lost soldiers, upright and defiant." Those are the words of author Steve "Crusher" Bartlett, who over the past 25 years has summited more than 30 of these previously unclimbed towers during his adventures. At 7 tonight, he'll present a free slideshow and book signing at Mountain Chalet (226 N. Tejon St., deserttowersbook.com), sharing tales of "loose rock, dangerously runout climbing, terrible anchors" and much more. Early holiday gift shoppers: The 350-page work features first-ascent photos and essays by regarded desert climbers. Matthew Schniper

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