Garden of Elitch

Now that the Six Flags no longer unfurl over the place, it’s back to basics for Elitch Gardens, which reclaims its unadorned moniker of old when the thrill park opens today at 10 a.m. for its 117th season. Any citizen whose local memory stretches back beyond the past ten years or so knows that there’s a lot to live up to in the Elitch Gardens name, which conjures the park’s heyday in northwest Denver when it sported spectacular flower gardens, a professional theater and dancing to big bands in the world-famous Trocadero Ballroom.

“We’re excited to bring the park back to Denver’s roots, and we’ve added a new entertainment package that’s one of the Gardens’ largest in a long time,” says spokeswoman Brooke Gabbert. “Of course, we can’t compete with the Elitch Gardens of the ’40s and ’50s, but we still hope to pay homage to it.” So give them credit for trying: In addition to a wide spread of rides tailored to all age groups, Elitch Gardens will roll out several special attractions, including the elegant Bailamos cirque-style performance, the X-CITY! urban acrobats and a hot and heavy Carnaval de Fuego II. That’s a far cry from Benny Goodman and Les Brown, but exciting nonetheless.

Elitch Gardens, 2000 Elitch Circle, will be open Thursdays through Sundays until late May, when daily summer hours begin; for complete information, call 303-595-4FUN or go to www.elitchgardens.com. www.elitchgardens. com
April 19-Nov. 1, 2008

 
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