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Concert venue guide

Clip and save this guide to entertainment venues on the Front Range.
/ Source: KOAA-TV

Red Rocks Amphitheatre Capacity: About 9,600 at general-admission shows or about 8,700 for reserved-seating shows.

Location: 12700 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison

Directions: Take I-25 north to the C-470 west exit. Follow C-470 west to Morrison Road. Take Morrison Road west through the town.

Telephone: (303) 697-8801

Parking: 14 unpaved lots hold about 4,000 cars. Lots are mostly red dirt and can be difficult to maneuver a car through. You'll pay a $5-per-ticket parking fee when you purchase tickets.

History: This outdoor venue is a natural, geologically formed open-air amphitheater in the Rocky Mountain foothills 15 miles west of Denver. Two 300-foot monoliths, Creation Rock and Ship Rock, frame the theater, with the stage sitting in the middle. It's a popular place for daylong festivals.

Ambience: Wow. You're at one with nature, under the sun and - eventually - the stars.

Rules and regulations: Doors open at 5 p.m., earlier for all-day festivals. You can take in: factory-sealed beverage containers, coolers 12 by 17 inches and smaller, cloth bags, soft packs, sliced fruit and veggies, binoculars, seat cushions, umbrellas, paper and plastic cups with permitted beverages. You cannot take in: alcohol or illegal drugs, cameras or tripods, wine skins or bota bags, sticks or clubs, fireworks, bullhorns and other noise-makers, framed backpacks, confetti, animals (except for aides to disabled patrons) and skateboards. Prepare to be searched.

Important: Folks who are out of shape may get winded by the strenuous, mostly uphill walk to the site. Disabled patrons will find seating in the first and top rows. Handicapped parking is available in two of the upper lots; ramps lead into the theater. Arrangements may be made in advance for people with disabilities to be dropped off at the backstage lot. Dress in layers to accommodate the ever-changing weather.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090; Ticketweb, (800) 965-4827; TicketsWest, (800) 325-7328

Fiddler's Green

Capacity: 18,000, including 7,500 fixed seats and hillside lawn seating for 10,500.

Location: 6350 Greenwood Plaza Blvd., Englewood

Directions: Take I-25 north to the Orchard Road exit. Go west to Greenwood Plaza Boulevard, turn left to Fiddler's Green.

Telephone: (303) 220-7000

Parking: The theater is surrounded by parking lots in the Denver Technological Center. Patrons pay a $3.50-per-ticket parking fee when they buy tickets.

History: Fiddler's Green opened in 1989. It is owned by the Museum of Outdoor Arts and leased to House of Blues Concerts. Concerts run from early May to the end of September. Music ranges from ballet to rap.

Ambience: It's like getting back to nature, superficially - think camping in your back yard. A yuppie version of Red Rocks.

Rules and regulations: Gates open an hour before show time for most shows. For sold-out events and larger shows, the gates open about an hour and a half before show time. Not allowed: outside food and beverages, weapons, cameras, large beach umbrellas, lawn chairs of any type, Frisbees, banners with sticks, bottled water, cans, bottles or coolers. Be prepared to be searched with a metal detector.

Important: Concerts must conclude by 10:30 p.m. because Fiddler's is in the middle of a residential area. If you have lawn seating, take a blanket to stake your claim, or, better yet, something made of nylon or plastic, because the ground is often cold and damp. Shows will not be canceled or moved to another venue because of bad weather, so come prepared. Accommodations for patrons with disabilities include close-in parking, wheelchair ramps, special seating, TDD machines, headphones and Braille signs.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090

The Pepsi Center

Capacity: 17,600 to 20,100, depending on stage setup for each show

Location: 1000 Chopper Place, Denver

Directions: Take I-25 to the Auraria Parkway exit and follow the signs. The arena is less than a mile east of the freeway, to the left of the parkway.

Telephone: (303) 405-1111

Parking: 6,400 spaces, although some slots are shared with neighbor Six Flags Elitch Gardens. Parking fees range from $10 to $20. Valet parking is $30.

History: The Pepsi Center replaced the now-demolished McNichols Arena as a major Denver venue. The $180 million facility is home to the Colorado Avalanche and the Denver Nuggets. It sits on 52 acres in Denver's Central Platte Valley, near LoDo.

Ambience: Clean, good acoustics and very user-friendly with 41 restrooms and dozens of food items and drinks.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages allowed. Be prepared to be searched and have purses checked for weapons.

Important: 200 parking spaces and 250 seats are reserved for the disabled. The seats are easily accessible and allow plenty of room. All signs are also printed in Braille. Six passenger elevators and seven escalators ease movement. TDD phones and special earphones are available for the hearing-impaired.

Tickets: Ticketmaster,


CityLights Pavilion

Capacity: 5,300

Location: 1700 Seventh St., west edge of the Pepsi Center grounds, Denver.

Directions: Take I-25 to the Auraria Parkway exit and follow the signs. The venue is less than a mile east of the freeway, to the left of the parkway.

Telephone: (303) 405-1111, Pepsi Center's main line

Parking: 6,400 spaces, although some slots are shared with neighbor Six Flags Elitch Gardens. Parking fees range from $10 to $20. Valet parking is $30.

History: This joint venture between Clear Channel and Kroenke Sports Enterprises (owner of the Pepsi Center), sits on the Pepsi Center grounds. The pavilion is under construction and should be complete by June 14 for Barry Manilow's christening concert.

Ambience: Tented outdoor amphitheatre in operation only through the warm months.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages allowed. Be prepared to be searched and have purses checked for weapons.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090

Ogden Theater

Capacity: About 1,000

Location: 935 E. Colfax Ave., Denver

Directions: Take I-25 north to the Colfax Avenue exit. Head east to Ogden Street. The theater is on the corner on the left side of the street.

Telephone: (303) 830-2525

Parking: Park on surrounding side streets - you may need some patience.

History: This former movie house sat empty for years but has become an important venue showcasing a diverse lineup of up-and-coming bands and artists.

Ambience: Cozy, dark and loud. It's kind of grimy - but acceptably so for a rock concert. Be prepared to stand, as there are no seats on the main floor. A good trick is to go upstairs to the balcony; the front row has a ledge in front of those seats. If you sit on the ledge, the people behind you won't get annoyed.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages allowed. Be prepared to be searched for weapons at the door. No spiked leather jackets, cameras or recording devices. Doors open an hour before show time.

Tickets: Ticketweb, (800) 965-4827

Paramount Theater

Capacity: 2,150

Location: 1621 Glenarm Place at the 16th Street Mall, Denver

Directions: Take I-25 to the Colfax Avenue exit, head east on Colfax to Glenarm, then go left for four blocks; the Paramount is on the left.

Telephone: (303) 825-4904

Parking: Main parking is on the surrounding side streets in downtown Denver. But the ticket price usually includes a fee for a parking garage about two blocks away on 18th Street between Welton and California streets.

History: This former movie house was built in 1929 and is listed on the National Historic Register. It's one of only two theaters in the country with two fully functioning Wurlitzer pipe organs under the stage.

Ambience: A big cozy-feeling living room. Just one giant love-fest.

Rules and regulations: No cameras, recording devices, food or beverages. Doors open about an hour before each show.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090

Colorado Music Hall

Capacity: 1,000, depending on show setup

Location: 2475 E. Pikes Peak Ave., Colorado Springs

Directions: From downtown, take Pikes Peak Avenue east. It's between Union Boulevard and Circle Drive.

Telephone: 447-9797

Parking: 265 spaces; free. Parking also is available on side streets.

History: Built in 1969, the Music Hall used to be the Cinema 150 movie theater. It closed for a while in the mid-'80s and reopened as a church. It closed again, re-opened in 1994 and is now run by Denver promoter Nobody In Particular Presents and holds shows ranging from metal shows to retro acts.

Ambience: Like going to the movies and being part of the action.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages allowed. Cameras are allowed at some shows but video cameras aren't. Doors open an hour before each show.

Tickets: Ticketweb, (800) 965-4827

Fillmore Auditorium

Capacity: 3,600

Location: 1510 Clarkson St., Denver

Directions: Take I-25 to the Colfax exit. Go east on Colfax to Clarkson Street. The Fillmore is on the northeast corner of Clarkson and Colfax.

Telephone: (303) 837-0360, main business line; (303) 837-1482 recorded information

Parking: Park on surrounding side streets. Try to arrive early so you won't have to park too many blocks away.

History: The former Mammoth Events Center became the Fillmore in 1999 and is modeled after its San Francisco namesake. Major promoter Bill Graham Presents/Chuck Morris Presents spent $2 million decking out the Fillmore with royal colors, crystal chandeliers and a prime sound system.

Ambience: Classy and clean. Reminiscent of a huge big-city cabaret. Very customer-friendly, as concertgoers can wander freely without constantly showing their ticket stubs.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages. Most shows are for ages 16 and older. Seating is general admission unless otherwise noted. Be prepared to be searched.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090

Magness Arena

Capacity: As many as 8,000

Location: Part of the Ritchie Center at the University of Denver, 2240 E. Buchtel Blvd.

Directions: Take I-25 north to University Boulevard South, Exit 205-B. Go south on University Boulevard to Buchtel Boulevard. Tip: Look for the high gold tower from the highway.

Telephone: (303) 871-2000, main campus line; (303) 871-2336 recorded information

Parking: Look for the "event parking" signs. Find free parking at the satellite lot at All City Stadium and at South High School, west of the university on Franklin Street.

History: Magness Arena is the primary venue at the Ritchie Center for Sports and Wellness. It is home to DU hockey, gymnastics, basketball and volleyball. House of Blues Concerts has the exclusive contract to book shows.

Ambience: Sports, sports, sports. Nobody works hard to create a concert ambience.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages.

Tickets: Ticketmaster, 520-9090

Gothic Theatre

Capacity: 700

Location: 3263 S. Broadway, Englewood

Directions: Take I-25 north to the U.S. 285/Hampden Avenue exit (Exit 201) on the right. Turn left onto East Hampden Avenue until it becomes East Jefferson Avenue, then take the Colorado Highway 75/Broadway ramp. Turn right onto South Broadway for about a half-mile.

Telephone: (303) 380-2333

Parking: Park in the lot next door or along the street on South Broadway.

History: Built in the early 1900s, the Gothic originally was a movie house - the first in Denver to show talking movies. It eventually became a struggling music hall and almost was torn down. In 1998 it was purchased out of bankruptcy, saving it from the wrecking ball. It reopened in June 1999 after being remodeled.

Ambience: Although it seats about 700, the atmosphere is fairly intimate. Many types of bands play the Gothic's stage, although the venue is most appropriate for jazz acts and upscale crowds.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages. You may be searched, depending on the show.

Tickets: Ticketweb, (800) 965-4827; TicketsWest, (800) 325-7328; Ticketmaster, 520-9090.

Colorado Springs City Auditorium

Capacity: 3,000

Location: 221 E. Kiowa St., Colorado Springs

Directions: From I-25, take the Bijou Street exit and go east. Venue is on the corner of Kiowa and Weber streets.

Telephone: 578-6652

Parking: In front of and beside venue and on surrounding side streets.

History: This city-owned venue built in the early 1920s entertained locals with concerts, circuses and antiques shows for decades. It lost a lot of business after larger venues moved into town. But the City Auditorium once again is playing host to concerts, antiques shows, trade fairs, cat shows and more.

Ambience: It has a cozy, aged feel that hasn't been ruined by a bunch of high-tech gadgetry, which works to its advantage, depending on the show.

Rules and regulations: No outside food or beverages.

Tickets: Phone numbers vary depending on who is promoting the show.

Colorado Springs World Arena

Capacity: 7,200 for concerts

Location: 3185 Venetucci Blvd., Colorado Springs

Directions: Going south on I-25, take Exit 138 (Circle Drive). Take a right off the exit, then take a left at the second stoplight, which will put you on Venetucci. At the second stoplight, make a left into the parking lot.

Telephone: 477-2121

Parking: $5

History: The World Arena opened in 1998, the result of years of community initiative. It's home to Colorado College Tiger hockey and Gold Kings hockey.

Ambience: For concerts, the stage takes up the south end, forming a U-shape for seating. Chairs are set up for floor seating. Nearly all views are good. It's nothing fancy, but it's clean, clean, clean.

Rules and regulations: Not allowed: outside food and beverages, bottles, cans, glasses and ice chests or containers, cameras, recording devices, sticks, clubs, firearms, bullhorns and noise-makers, framed backpacks, confetti, beach balls and other inflatables, stools and folding chairs, water bottles and mugs. If you leave the arena during an event, you won't be readmitted.

Tickets: Colorado Neighborhood Box Office, 576-2626