Kava Lounge, an after-hours, 18+, BYOB venue selling kava root drinks, opens this month

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When Kava Lounge opens at 1915 Broadway in Boulder near the end of April, it will be the first of its kind in Denver's northwest neighbor. It will be open seven days per week and until 5 a.m. on Thursday through Saturday night (Sunday morning, really). Anyone over 18 years old is welcome, and while the two-level club capable of holding 300 people won't be serving alcohol, manager Antonio Otea says that patrons over 21 can bring in their own booze.

"They can bring it in and they can bag it up when they leave," Oteo says. "We can't touch it, store it or sell it, which is fine by us."

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Ian Cooke plays the Science Lounge, where there's booze, bear suits and plenty of gluesticks

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Ashley Rogers
At last night's Science Lounge at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, I asked a grown woman what drew her into a fishbowl full of craft supplies to make her own mini diorama, and this is what she said: "I was like, ooh! There's glue sticks in there!"

Hot glue does have an undeniable magical pull on folks who fondly remember craft time in summer camp. At this month's Science Lounge event, after hours museum-goers were invited to relive their childhood hobbies while sipping on cocktails. And everyone was totally into it.

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A look at Lost Lake Lounge's complete overhaul, with two new sound systems and a new stage

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The newly extended stage in Lost Lake Lounge's front room.
In the years since it became Lost Lake Lounge, the strip-mall bar sitting on Colfax just west of Colorado Blvd. has maintained a low-key, log-cabin-like atmosphere; beers were sipped at the front room's small crescent-shaped bar, and bands played in the back room on the floor.

The space has a long history in Denver music. It opened in the early '40s as the Alamo, Denver's first piano bar. It went through several name and ownership changes. By 2010 it was the Bulldog and wasn't hosting shows. Matt LaBarge bought the spot that year and brought back live music. When fellow venue owner Scott Campbell bought Lost Lake Lounge from LaBarge in late 2013, he didn't waste much time before turning the modest two-room space into a full-on venue. The Lost Lake Lounge of today is in some ways unrecognizable from the one in which you might have spent an evening as recently as December.

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Photos: Here's what to expect at Syntax Physic Opera, which will open in late April

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While Jonathan Bitz originally planned to have Syntax Physic Opera up and running by last November, construction delays and having to obtain new permits have extended the timeline. He's now hoping that his music venue, eatery and art bar open by the end of April.

After a five-year stint as a talent buyer at the Meadowlark, Bitz started what would become a three-year hunt for his own place. Last August, he took over the building at 554 South Broadway that most recently housed the Bar (and the Atrium before that) and began transforming the space into Syntax Physic Opera.

"Physic Opera is sort of a Latin phrase that the insiders would call a medicine show," he says. "The idea is that it is a medicine show -- that everything is medicine, from the food to the drinks to the art to the music to the conversation, hopefully."

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Swallow Hill's new music-school director Andres Cladera has a broad definition of folk music

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Courtesy of Swallow Hill
Andres Cladera
The distance between classical and folk music isn't so great for Swallow Hill's new music-school director. Swallow Hill Music officials announced this week that Uruguay native and Carnegie Mellon University alum Andres Cladera will fill the post. He replaces Michael Schenkelberg, who has held the job since 2007. In his new role, Cladera will oversee director duties at the historic music school's new satellite location in the Lowry neighborhood that opened earlier this month.

Cladera may seem an unlikely fit for Swallow Hill, a music and concert facility that opened in 1979 as an offshoot of Colorado Music Hall of Fame inductee Harry Tuft's Denver Folklore Center. The school operates on a model rooted in accessibility and community, with a stress on folk music. Though classes range from guitar to accordion for students from toddlers to adults, Swallow Hill has never posed as a conservatory.

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After-parties at Lost Lake Lounge feature DJ sets by more and more Bluebird headliners

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Ashley Rogers
For national acts touring through Denver, "the party doesn't have to stop at the encore," says Lipgloss co-founder Michael Trundle (boyhollow). Instead, bands can walk across the street from the Bluebird, fresh from playing to a packed crowd, and deejay at Lost Lake Lounge. They did twice last weekend: On Friday, Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band held an after-party there. And on Saturday it was Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.

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The original Walnut Room on Walnut Street expanding kitchen and renovating music room

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A few months ago, the original Walnut Room on Walnut Street closed in its patio, put heaters out there and expanded the seating. Because of that, the spot has been a lot more busy and to accommodate for that the kitchen is being expanded and the bar in the music room is being moved. Randall Frazier, the Walnut Room's talent buyer and sound engineer, says that the space that was once the bar in the music room will now be part of the kitchen and a new bar, which will be much smaller, is being installed in the back near the sound board.

See also: Jonah Munson, exec chef of the Walnut Room, on yard sales and mixers


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#TheSolution7 continues with more events celebrating seven years of the Solution in Denver

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Kenneth Hamblin III

This past weekend, the Solution crew kicked off #TheSolution7 at the Meadowlark, commemorating the seventh year of the long-running, award-winning hip-hop night. The celebration continues this Friday, February 14, with a special Valentine's Day edition at the Meadowlark with a playlist of slow jams at the end of the evening, followed by some themed parties later in the month, a beat workshop and beat battle, culminating with a beat swap and fashion show. Continue on for the full schedule, and check out the full slideshow from this past Friday's party.

See also: The Solution's seven-year anniversary party at the Meadowlark

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Viewhouse expanding, set to open in Centennial in July at site of former Trail Dust Steakhouse

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Designed by Roth Sheppard

While the location is bound to be very familiar to folks living in Centennial -- or at least northbound commuters on I-25 -- the new building going in at 7101 South Clinton Street, the former site of the Trail Dust Steak House (and later Rhythms) will look completely different when Viewhouse opens this July. As you can see from the artist's rendering above, Viewhouse 2.0 -- the second location of Lotus Concepts' flagship eatery and nightclub, the first being at 20th and Market -- is two stories tall, with a wrap-around deck, an outdoor cabana, and even a putting green. Continue on to see another peek at architect Roth Sheppard's design.

See also: Photos: ViewHouse Eatery Bar & Rooftop opens in the Ballpark Neighborhood

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Brendan's 404 Pub to host live music, starting with Sean Kelly from the Samples on 1/29/14

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All photos by Jon Solomon

After graduating college and moving to Denver in the '70s, Kevin Geraghty started going to the Club 404, the bar at 404 Broadway owned for six decades by Jerry Feld, who passed away earlier this month. Geraghty, who ran Brendan's Pub for almost ten years on Market Street and later on Larimer, took over the space a little bit over a year ago and redubbed the spot Brendans's 404 Pub. Over the last year, Geraghty has been renovating the space and later this month, the place will begin hosting live music with a gig from the Samples frontman Sean Kelly on Wednesday, January 29.

See also: Brendan's 404 moves into former Club 404 space at 404 Broadway in Baker

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