Jody Evans ushered in the spring with tropical drinks, hula-hoops and silence.
It was the quietest party ever.
The Silent Disco of Boulder filled Second Avenue in Niwot in late March. From a distance, it looked like an ordinary street party. Maybe a casual flash mob. People on the streets danced, jammed out, hooped and sipped non-alcoholic fruity drinks.
But as you drew closer, it seemed the block was on mute.
Instead of loudspeakers, these partygoers wore wireless headphones tuned into the same disco station.
Clearly, the neighbors dig this kind of party.
"That's part of the fun: They see a group of ecstatic, writhing dancers singing and laughing out loud to presumably the same song, but they can't understand what's going on or see that we all have headphones," says Evans, who started the Silent Disco of Boulder after experiencing a silent disco at a music festival -- yes, this is a thing all over the world. "Then we give them headphones and immediately, as soon as they put them on, people start grooving."
Boulder is endlessly amusing -- and the entertainment escalates as the weather warms. (And, it is going to warm and stay there, right?) As a super outdoorsy community, it seems there is always some new outdoor activity to try in the spring and summertime.
From silent disco, to wildflower hikes, to costumed bike rides, there are plenty of ways you can welcome spring, too. Just getting outside and moving is good for your health, both mental and physical.
Here are eight of our favorite springtime activities in Boulder County:
1. The Silent Disco of Boulder, facebook.com/silentdiscoboulder.
This free, public party takes place from 2 to 4 p.m. every Sunday (weather permitting) in front of Rockin' Robin's Retro and Resale shop, 124 Second Ave., Niwot. Like the Facebook page and sign up for Rockin' Robin's newsletter (rockinrobins.net) to get updates on spontaneous flash discos, as well.
"Because it's so ridiculous, people are willing to be extra crazy. It feeds on itself, and we have so much fun," Evans says. "It's staggeringly fun."
Evans says silent discos are huge in Europe and at music festivals in the states. At nightclubs, two disc jockeys battle it out while all club-goers wear headphones. It cuts back on noise complaints, Evans says.
Not a disco lover? You can switch your headphones to a cheeseball '80s and hair metal station.
Headphones and hoops are provided. Rockin Robin's often provides special disco discounts, too.
Oh, and you can also rent the wireless headphones or commission a private silent disco party for your office or home.
"Seriously, you're not going to be the same. You'll see what I mean after you try it," Evans says.
2. Friday Night Open House at the Observatory, lyra.colorado.edu/sbo.
Stargaze through pier-mounted 16- and 18-inch telescopes, binoculars and even (quite possibly) the world's largest starwheel.
The University of Colorado's Sommers-Bausch Observatory in the Kittredge Complex opens doors for free to the public starting at 7 p.m. Fridays through the spring and summer (weather permitting).
The event is casual. Stay as long as you want (doors are usually open until 9-10 p.m.).
Some evenings, you might even be able to visit the 24-inch telescope, or gaze at the moon through smaller telescopes set up on the open deck.
3. Outdoor hikes and events through Boulder County, bouldercounty.org.
The county organizes educational hikes several times a week throughout the spring and summer.
On April 28 at the Walker Ranch Homestead, you can learn about farming and ranching as practiced by the settlers. Try your hand at beating a rug, preparing a garden or even churning butter.
Take a free digital photo hike -- guided by naturalists -- on May 11 around Walden Ponds Wildlife. Learn about composition techniques, camera basics and other tips for about two hours.
On May 18, take a free wildflower hike up Rabbit Mountain. Learn about Easter daisies, Nuttall's violets and other spring flowers, as you hike two miles.
4. Community bike nights, longmontbikenight.blogspot.com.
Boulder County offers a variety of group bike rides, such as Bike Night in Longmont, which meets at 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays in the summer at Roosevelt park. Check the calendar for costume themes. Hawaiian shirts are scheduled on May 30, superheroes on June 6 and neon on June 13.
Also check events by the Boulder Cycling Club (bouldercyclingclub.org), which organizes group rides every Saturday morning, starting at Bicycle Village on 28th Street in Boulder.
5. Gliding or kayaking with the Boulder Outdoor Center, boc123.com.
The Boulder Outdoor Center has a wide variety of outdoor activities, such as glider rides over Boulder ($219 per person) in the front seat of a two-seat glider. Or learn to kayak in an indoor pool, on a lake or even in the river ($139 per person).
6. Walking Boulder Brew Tour, boulderbrewtours.com.
Take a two- to three-hour guided tour of Pearl Street and its small craft breweries. Stop and taste beer, learn how it's made and pick up some info about the city's history along the way ($28 per person).
Not feeling like walking? There's also a driving tour to sample Boulder's microbrews.
7. Regular events at Shine, shineboulder.com.
Shine Restaurant and Gathering Palce has a variety of regularly occurring spring events. Every second Wednesday is Hoopy Hours, a hula hoop class and happy hour. Take salsa lessons hosted by Green Streets (Bouldergreenstreets.org) the first Wednesday of the month.
Shine also hosts Urban Flow -- a yoga class and dance party, with the Yoga Pod -- the fourth Friday of the month.
"Get the energy flowing back in your body, work up a sweat and then have some drinks and food with friends," says Jill Emich, with Shine. "It is a great way to harness spring fever."
8. The library concert series, bplnow.boulderlibrary.org.
The Boulder Public Library organizes free concerts for the public, such as the Colorado Chamber Players "Dohnanyi Sextet" on June 9. The second Wednesday of the month, from noon to 1 p.m., is the Midday Music Meditation, an hour of improvised music.
All concerts take place in the Canyon Theater of the Boulder Public Library.
"The Canyon Theater is nice and cool in the summer months. Plus, it is a beautiful, real theater with 208 seats," says Juliette Leon Bartsch, concerts coordinator.
In addition, she says, the library presents some of the best musicians in the area and a wide variety of styles, from jazz to opera to folk.