Another Act for the Elitch Theatre

The theater at Elitch Gardens once boasted the oldest summer-stock company in the country, with stars ranging from Douglas Fairbanks Jr. to Robert Redford. But the company disbanded in 1963, and then the amusement park left northwest Denver altogether, leaving behind the circa-1891 theater. Although the exterior of the historic building was stabilized, the interior was left empty -- and increasingly ramshackle. But now there's new energy in the campaign to resurrect the Elitch theater, and it's being fed by the area's restaurants.

Tonight from 5 to 6:30 p.m., the Z Cuisine Wine Tasting, at the wonderful French bistro at 2239 West 30th Avenue, will raise funds for the theater's interior renovation. "It's in desperate need of help," says new boardmember Jose Mercado, who used to go to Elitch's as a kid and now would like to see the theater not just offer world-class productions, but "turn into a cultural center for the community."

And Z Cuisine is a particularly appropriate place to kick off this latest effort (the board plans to schedule monthly benefits at local restaurants), because owner Patrick Dupays was an actor in France. So in addition to the wine, appetizers and dessert that your $40 ticket will buy tonight, you'll also get to see Dupays and Mercado perform a scene from Waiting for Godot.

Doug and Bobby couldn't do better. For more information, call 303-477-1111 or e-mail [email protected]
Wed., Dec. 30, 5-6:30 p.m., 2009

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun