Music, art & grub in Keystone |

Music, art & grub in Keystone

Special to the DailyAt Canvas & Cocktails, participants will follow an instructor's step-by-step instructions to create an acrylic painting of a retro-style owl. Canvas & Cocktails is a Cherry Creek-based business that brings the activity to Keystone for the local series.

Keystone has a full schedule of arts and activities planned for this weekend and beyond, from a performance by Summit Community Orchestra tonight and painting classes with your choice of cocktails or kids Saturday and Sunday to a Mardi Gras cook-off on Tuesday.

Tonight, the Summit Community Orchestra sponsors a free chamber concert featuring the Sagebrush Strings at Warren Station Center for the Arts starting at 7 p.m. (doors at 6:30, donations invited). The program includes a flute duet, quartets of both wind and cello and a quintet for strings as well as clarinet and harp music.

On Saturday, the artistic and the not-so-artistic join for a laid-back, instructor-guided evening of acrylic painting and yes – cocktails to help get those creative juices flowing. Canvas & Cocktails comes to Warren Station from Cherry Creek, where there is a retail location (”We definitely leave it up to the experts to conduct this class,” said Warren Station director of events and marketing Maja Russer, who encouraged locals to come out Saturday since it’s just a “jaunt down the road to Keystone,” instead of braving Interstate 70 to Denver on another day to do so. The evening is intended to be social and stress-free. Participants will replicate the night’s featured painting – a retro-style owl in black, white and red with brown accents – with step-by-step guidance from the instructor. The cocktail party starts at 6 p.m. and painting starts at 7. Aprons are provided but organizers recommend wearing clothes you don’t mind getting paint on. Entry is $45 in advance and $50 at the door, and space is limited. For tickets, go to

Try not to get the days mixed up because Sunday’s artistic event at Warren Station involves kids, not cocktails. On Sunday, parents can bring their little ones to Cupcakes & Canvases, an instructor-led “mommy and me” class where children create masterpieces and yes – eat cupcakes too. The instructor is “Maria Spots” and the cupcakes are by Keystone’s executive pastry chef Ned Archibald. The session runs from 10 a.m. to noon and includes a canvas ($15) and art supplies for the children.

For Fat Tuesday, Keystone Resort and the Keystone Neighbourhood Company bring the annual Mardi Gras gumbo competition back to River Run Village, along with a beignets bake-off, new this year. (For those not in the know, “beignet” is a French term for a kind of deep-fried pastry, often served with powdered sugar on top.)It’s just $10 for unlimited tastings and there will be live entertainment from Da Hoodoo Men – a six-piece act covering popular New Orleans music like Dr. John, Professor Longhair, The Neville Brothers and The Meters. The tasting takes place from 2:30-5 p.m. Tuesday, with music going to 5:30. The event is open to all competitors and there’s no entry fee; participants receive a tent, two tables, linens and tasting cups and spoons. A panel of judges votes on first, second and third place in each category, and there’s also a people’s choice contest for the gumbo. Interested parties should contact Allissa LaFave at (970) 423-8992 or by Saturday.

Next up, on Feb. 16-17, Keystone hosts a Winter Wine Weekend – two nights of tasting featuring more than 20 varieties of wine. On Feb. 16, wines are paired with hors d’oeuvres catered by Black Diamond Gourmet ($30), and there is entertainment by the jazz musicians, Will Donato Trio. On Feb. 17 there will be a pairing seminar followed by a New Zealand dinner by Chef Christopher Rybak ($55), who joins for the first time this year. Package prices are available too ( “Chef Rybak delivers an amazing product and the New Zealand theme is a new twist this year,” Russer said. “Just thinking about the lamb makes my mouth water. … We partner with fun event industry folks when putting on these events. We figure if we’re all having a good time then so are our guests.”

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