Lovers of pop culture gaze upon a new year and salivate at the endless possibilities.
What new movies will change their DNA? What music will settle their souls? What new foods will ease their troubled guts? What performances will fill their artistic well?
Here are 20 such opportunities to tempt your palate in 2020.
1. I visit Los Angeles twice a year and every trip, without fail, starts with a Double-Double Animal Style burger from In-N-Out. Its proximity to LAX makes it a relatively quick, if long-distance, trip. While I appreciate getting my bi-annual fix, I'll be much happier with a shorter, more frequent journey to my favorite fast food establishment when In-N-Out opens on the north side of Colorado Springs, scheduled for November. — Terry Terrones
2. I wish I'd listened to a co-worker years back, who advised me I wouldn't regret going to a G. Love and Special Sauce concert. I didn't go. It would be many more years before I finally listened to the singer-songwriter (real name: Garrett Dutton), whose easy guitar strumming and laidback tunes, such as "My Baby's Got Sauce," eased any weights in my world. Sounds corny, I know, but you'll be crooning the chorus on the way home if you attend his Feb. 27 show at The Black Sheep. — Jennifer Mulson
3. Colorado Springs’ west side is the city’s “untapped” sector. If craft beer growth plans come to fruition, that could dramatically change in 2020. IPA lovers continue to wait for Smiling Toad Brewery to open its new pad on 21st Street. Off U.S. 24, Fossil Craft Beer Co. is set for an expansion — double the great beverages, double the seating with great people. And over on 31st Street, anticipation builds surrounding a proposed taproom by Greeley-based, highly regarded WeldWerks Brewing Co. — Seth Boster
4. This is my smaller show pick for the new year. A few hours before a Lake Street Dive concert last summer, I decided to acquaint myself with the opener, Yola, via Spotify. I was hooked after streaming those songs, but that was nothing compared with seeing British singer-songwriter Yola, in all her soulful and folk force, live. That's why I'd recommend checking out her Feb. 11 concert at Bluebird Theater in Denver. She's up for four Grammy Awards this month. — Amanda Hancock
5. Fans of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" have long thought the exploits of their favorite captain with a French name and a British accent were over — on the small screen, anyway – way back in 1994 when the TV series ended its seven-season run. Au contraire, mon frere. Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) returns in a new series, "Star Trek: Picard," which premieres Jan. 23 on CBS All Access. Jean-Luc is joined by some familiar faces, including Data (Brent Spiner), Riker (Jonathan Frakes) Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis) and Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan). — TT
6. Frida Kahlo is all eyebrows and fiery personality. A woman who was unapologetic about her nontraditional lifestyle and penchant for self-portraits. I can't wait to get intimate with works by Kahlo and her husband, Diego Rivera. "Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Mexican Modernism from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection" opens Oct. 25 and runs through Jan. 17 at Denver Art Museum. — JM
7. No denying “Dunkirk,” the last movie by Christopher Nolan, was good. But the World War II epic, along with his also-good Batman entries, felt something like departures for the man known for following not-so-linear lines. Nolan has been bending minds since “Memento.” And it seems he’ll be doing so again this summer with “Tenet,” starring John David Washington. It’s about ... well, it’s impossible to know what it’s about after watching the trippy trailer. — SB
8. Colorado Springs has many things, but there isn't a place about 300 feet from work where I can grab oysters and oyster shooters. Yet. Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar is opening soon (like, this month) to fill that particular gap. The seafood restaurant, which also boasts a solid craft beer list, opened 25 years ago in Boulder and has multiple locations around the state. Find the new spot at 11 S. Tejon St. in downtown. — AH
9. If the 25th James Bond film, "No Time to Die," is Daniel Craig's swan song, he sure is going out in a blaze of glory. A trailer for the film is action-packed with beautiful vistas and an amazing motorcycle stunt. "No Time to Die" is also star-studded, with characters from previous Bond films pulling 007 out of retirement to face a mysterious villain played by Rami Malek. I can't wait for April 10 to toss back a martini (shaken not stirred) in honor of Daniel Craig. — TT
10. Perhaps people aren't aware that Lin-Manuel Miranda, of "Hamilton" fame, did a little something before his Tony Award-winning historical extravaganza. And that was the 2008 Tony Award-winning "In the Heights," which takes place over three days in the largely Hispanic-American neighborhood of Washington Heights in New York City. The Fine Arts Center Theatre Company is set to take on the play Sept. 24-Oct. 18 at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College. — JM
11. The broader chicken world will remember 2019 for the arrival of the Popeye’s sandwich. Colorado Springs will remember it for the Raising Cane’s invasion. “Caniacs” were converted along Academy and Powers boulevards, inundating drive-thrus. Now a third location of Raising Cane's looms. Residents closer to the city’s center, prepare yourselves. The chicken fingers are coming to 4530 Hilton Parkway, northwest of Interstate 25 and Garden of the Gods Road, on Feb. 18. — SB
12. Of all the accolades attached to country singer Luke Combs, this is a big one: When Garth Brooks accepted his CMA Award for entertainer of the year in 2019, he called out Combs, saying, "This has got your name on it in the future, hoss." Anyone Garth deems entertaining is someone I want to see. Combs, who won the CMA Award of male artist of the year, is behind songs such as "Beautiful Crazy," "She Got the Best of Me" and "Beer Never Broke My Heart." He plays April 19 at The Broadmoor World Arena. — AH
13. The title of best pubcade (arcade/pub) in Colorado Springs belongs to SuperNova, located downtown at 111 E. Boulder St. A wide array of arcade cabinets, delicious pub food options and some killer happy hour deals make it a go-to destination for those with a roll of quarters looking to have a nostalgic trip to the '80s and '90s. But what's even better than one SuperNova? Two SuperNovas. A second location, SuperNova II (unofficial title) is opening in Old Colorado City early this year. — TT
14. I sort of wish I grew up as a hippie in the '60s. Great music, fun clothes, rebelling against the man. I can quench those occasional yearnings March 12-22 during the production of "Hair," by TheatreWorks and University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Theatre and Dance Program at Ent Center for the Arts. The musical features tunes such as "Aquarius," "Manchester," "The Flesh Failures (Let the Sunshine In)" and "Hair." And don't underestimate a student production. I saw "Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson" here, and it was top-notch. — JM
15. In 2019, we said farewell to the Avengers, the heroes’ final battle complete in “Endgame.” A bittersweet time it was. But now we must look to the horizon and trust Marvel Studios has more up its sleeve. Among titles slated for 2020 is an all-star cast headed by Angelina Jolie in the “The Eternals,” which has the best potential for bringing us a similar thrill as the famed tag team of the past decade. — SB
16. This 18-year-old pop star released her first song on SoundCloud in 2016. She'll spend 2020 headlining arenas. With help from her older brother, Finneas, the talented teenager made one of 2019's best albums and her album's title, "When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?" was probably one of 2019's biggest questions. So, Happy New Year to us Coloradans, because Billie Eilish is soon coming our way. She's playing April 1 at Pepsi Center in Denver. — AH
17. Your need for speed finally will be fulfilled June 17 when the ageless Tom Cruise reprises his iconic role in "Top Gun: Maverick" 34 years after the original film was released. While there's been little information on the plot, we do know that Iceman (Val Kilmer) returns and Miles Teller plays Goose's son. Trailers for the film are absolutely jaw-dropping and will make you realize that with Cruise in the cockpit, you've never lost that loving feeling for daring flyboys who fly recklessly. — TT
18. One of my favorite Tony Award-winning musicals that I've never seen on stage is on the 2020 calendar. "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," by Fine Arts Center Theatre Company, is slated for May 28-June 21 at Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College. The music is so fun, the characters are so over-the-top and it's all about a spelling bee, of all things. Broadway's ability to add song and dance to unlikely scenarios never fails to amaze me. — JM
19. My musical experience of the 2010s is best defined by a subgenre that came to be called “alt-country.” The likes of Jason Isbell, Sturgill Simpson and Tyler Childers rose to the mainstream, while another player waits his turn. John Moreland, scheduled for LuLu’s Downstairs on May 17, can write a song to rival them all. He’s sure to play from his new record due Feb. 7. — SB
20. We're about to see Taylor Swift in an unprecedented fashion: A documentary. "Taylor Swift: Miss Americana" is set to premiere this month at the Sundance Film Festival. Directed by the Emmy Award-winning Lana Wilson, the film is described as a "raw and emotionally revealing look at one of the most iconic artists of our time as she learns to embrace her role not only as a songwriter and performer, but as a woman harnessing the full power of her voice.” It's also coming to Netflix in 2020. — AH