Scenes from the season

May Selby

Offseason offers a relaxed time of year to connect with community and spend time in intimate settings prior to the hyper holiday schedule just around the corner. A few such events of note include a recent fall fundraiser at Phat Thai, a happy hour at Hooch and the fabulous production currently taking place at the Aspen District Theatre.

On Oct. 24, Ascendigo Autism brought staff and supporters together for Fall Fest at Phat Thai in Carbondale. Guests enjoyed drinks, hors d’oeuvres, a raffle and learning more about the nonprofit’s important work for autism awareness. All proceeds from the event were earmarked for Ascendigo’s Winter Adventures Program. Save the date for its upcoming Ascendigo Aspen Blue autism benefit event over Presidents Day weekend on Saturday, Feb. 16, at the Hotel Jerome.

Aspen Art Museum (AAM) senior curator Courtenay Finn was celebrated amid colleagues and museum patrons Nov. 9 with a surprise gathering at Hooch — one of her favorite haunts when not immersed in researching and planning contemporary exhibitions, meeting with visiting artists, collaborating with the education team and more. Since her arrival in 2014, at a busy time coinciding with the opening of the AAM’s new building, she has curated numerous exhibitions. These include solo shows by Mickalene Thomas, as well as Yto Barrada, which is on view through Dec. 2, and one of my personal favorites, The Blue of Distance, which spanned photography, drawing, sculpture, and sound to explore the color’s “uncanny relationship to absence.” She’ll return after the holidays for her swan song, a show by artist Margaret Kilgallen opening Jan. 12. Her new post is with the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland where Finn has been appointed chief curator.

The fall production by Aspen Community Theatre (ACT) filled the Aspen District Theatre last weekend and returns for shows this Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and a Sunday matinee at 2 p.m. “Big River: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” a musical with book by William Hauptman and music and lyrics by Roger Miller, is based on Mark Twain’s classic 1884 novel, “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Founded in 1975, with the purpose of enriching the lives of our community, ACT is one of the longest-running companies still doing live theater in Aspen and offers a lens on the wide breadth of talent throughout the entire Roaring Fork Valley.

To reach May with invites and insights, email