Roamin' the Range, Sept. 2014

Fort Collins City Council has approved the re-introduction of endangered black-footed ferrets to Soapstone Prairie Natural Area and Meadow Springs Ranch. Everyone is invited to a ceremony celebrating the release, Wednesday, Sept. 3, 4-7 p.m. at Soapstone Prairie’s south parking lot. Speeches in the south parking lot will be followed by a 1-mile hike to the release site. Participants will witness the first ferret release by a municipality from a viewing point about ¼-mile away. There will be very limited photography opportunities. Binoculars and a spotting scope will be available to borrow on-site and the public is welcome to bring their own. Free, no registration is required, but a reminder and updates are available by signing up at naturetracker.fcgov.com. Speakers at 5 p.m. will include: Fort Collins Mayor Karen Weitkunat; State Rep. Randy Fischer, D-Fort Collins; Colorado Parks and Wildlife assistant director Chad Bishop, USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Service wildlife services state director Michael Yeary; USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service acting state conservationist Maria Collazo; and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regional director Noreen Walsh. Call at least a week in advance to make arrangements with Zoe Whyman, natural areas community relations manager at 970-221-6311 or zwhyman@fcgov.com.

The 2014-15 season at Bas Bleu Theatre, 401 Pine St. in Fort Collins opens with “The Great Goddess Bazaar,” Sept. 4-13. Introducing a rich sequence of characters, comic and tragic, the play teaches about the significance of our choices and that it’s possible to make mistakes and move on. Sept. 18-28, Wendy Ishii brings Joan Didion’s “The Year of Magical Thinking” to life the stage. Info. and tickets, 970-498-8949.

Here’s your chance to experience life in the pioneer West first-hand. Between 9 a.m.and 4 p.m. Sept. 13, the Virginia Dale Community Club is sponsoring the first Western History and Culture Day at the Virginia Dale Stage Station. With a focus on how stage lines, the railroad and telegraph helped settlers move around and keep in touch, the event features quilting, weaving, log chinking, spinning, soapmaking, square-dancing and horse care demonstrations. Ray Stokes will demonstrate cowboy cooking in his chuckwagon. Local author Barbara Fleming will talk about the life of a pioneer family and offer book signing for her “Legendary Locals of Fort Collins.” Eva Sue Littleton will bring Sacajawea to life. Lunch available for purchase. Ice cream social for $1 a scoop. No fee. Any donations will contribute to restoration of the stage station, at 152 years old, the last stage station in its original location on the Overland Trail in northeastern Colorado. Info: virginiadalecommunityclub.org or Marcie Wells 970-568-7646. E-mail to vdcc.vd.co@wildblue.net if you are interested in attending the event.

“Travel through Time: 150 Years in the Fort,” is the theme of the 2014 historic homes tour. Sponsored by the Poudre Landmarks Foundation, the 30th annual tour includes nine homes and commercial structures representing three centuries of Fort Collins life. $20 per person, $25 on tour day. Advance tickets available through PayPal at poudrelandmarks.org or at the following Fort Collins locations: The Cupboard, Ace Hardware (Clay’s and Downtown), Fort Collins Nursery, Perennial Gardener/Sense of Place and the Avery House. Proceeds assist the Poudre Landmarks Foundation with preservation and interpretation of the Avery House Historic District and the 1882-1883 Fort Collins Water Works. For more information, call 970-221-0533 or poudrelandmarks.org.

Decidedly unconventional theatre returns to Fort Collins Sept. 5-6 as the second-annual Fort Collins Fringe Festival gets underway featuring original and experimental works by Northern Colorado playwrights and performers.
Productions include short “car plays,” performed in actual cars in the parking lot, with audiences standing nearby or even sitting in the back seat. Other performances include experimental long-form improv, premiere presentations by Fort Collins artists created specifically for the festival, and original works by students. The Festival is based on participation by anyone who has new material they want to present, regardless of how experimental, unusual, or edgy. Fringe productions are technically simple, short and original. The Friday event will be held at the Dome Theatre (Fort Collins Museum of Discovery), 408 Mason Ct. On Saturday, the Saturday event will be held at the Community Creative Center and Library Park, 200 Mathews St. Tickets for each day are $10 in advance and at the door. All-festival passes will also be available for $15 and information can be found at fringefestivalfortcollins.com, or on the festival Facebook page, www.facebook.com/FortCollinsFringeFestival.The Fort Collins Fringe is a grassroots event organized and produced by Heather Ostberg Johnson & Willis Productions, with support from La De Da School for the Performing Arts, and Horsetooth Productions, made possible in part by a grant from the City of Fort Collins Fort Fund and support from Mainline, & the Crooked Cocktail.

The theatre program at Colorado State University presents this year’s annual Shakespeare at Sunset production, featuring “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged),” Thursdays through Sundays until Sept. 7, 7 p.m. in the University Theatre at the University Center for the Arts 1400 Remington St. Tickets are $8 for CSU students, $8 for youth (under 18), and $18 for the public.Tickets are available at the ticket office in the UCA lobby 90 minutes prior to any UCA performance and through intermission or online at CSUArtsTickets.com. Information about upcoming performances can be found at 970-491-ARTS (2787). Advance or online purchase is recommended to avoid at-the-door fees. CSU students free on Ticket Thursday, Sept. 4. Public free on Sept. 7 on first-come, first-served basis.
Written by Adam Long, Daniel Singer, and Jess Winfield, “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” parodies the plays of the beloved bard with all of the works being performed (in comically shortened or combined form) by only three actors.

At the Global Museum of Arts and Cultures, 200 W. Mountain Ave., Fort Collins, an exhibit: “Small Faces, Cultural Masks and Heads” closes Sept. 1. There’s an opportunity to purchase some of these unusual masks at reduced prices. On Sept. 11, Loveland resident and co-founder of the Loveland Mountain Club, Jim Disney, presents “Climbing Denali,” describing his dramatic 20-day ascent of the mountain in 1981 in words and photos. $5. Free to Global Museum members.

Pioneer Living Day at Bee Family Centennial Farm is scheduled for Sept. 27. Come and see what life was like over 100 years ago. Special presentations include: Spinning and quilting, food demonstrations, blacksmith, miniature hay stacking equipment, beet farmer’s wife, draft horse models and working with horses. There will be a photo booth, trolley rides around the farm, and children’s activities. Bring a picnic lunch. Ice cream and lemonade for sale.
Step into the history of Northern Colorado agriculture. Hands-on children’s activities include, washing clothes on a scrub board, milking a wooden cow, grinding corn and throwing irrigation tubes. Cows, sheep, a pig, chickens, and turkeys are among the farms animals that will enrich your family’s experience. The Bee Family Centennial Farm Museum is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays at 4320 E. County Rd. 58 in Fort Collins. $7 for adults, $5 for seniors 60+, $3 for children 3-12, children under 3 free. Open May through October and by appointment for groups of 10 or more. Please visit beefamilyfarm.org or call 970-482-9168 for more information and directions.

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