**UPDATE 9/30/21: Due to a technical issue, the Howard Berkeley Park Chapel and Historic Elitch Gardens Theatre tours are currently unavailable, but the foundation is making all other virtual tours free.**
If you’ve been interested in a tour inside of some of North Denver’s most recognized landmarks, you’re about to have the chance to see three of them. Doors Open Denver (DOD) is an annual event run by the Denver Architecture Foundation (DAF) featuring architectural sites from across the city, some modern, some historic. This year, they selected two new buildings in North Denver and brought back a third for a second year. The Historic Elitch Theatre on 38th Ave and the Howard Berkeley Park Chapel on Tennyson have new virtual tours. There’s also limited in-person tours of the Elitch Theatre available to DAF members. A recorded tour of the Bosler house featuring the homeowners, is also being made available again.
“As part of our ongoing efforts to continue the annual tradition of Doors Open Denver, while prioritizing public safety, Denver Architecture Foundation is excited to present a hybrid event in 2021,” said Pauline Herrera, DAF executive director. “With our in-person tours, virtual tours and archived tours from 2020, we are offering access to more than 25 architectural sites, inspiring people to explore our dynamic city and state and experience the importance of design to our quality of life.
Historic Elitch Theatre
Completed in 1891, the Theatre hosted Colorado’s first moving picture in 1896. For new and younger residents of North Denver, the site was the location of the original Elitch Gardens, which moved downtown in 1994. While most of the site of the gardens was redeveloped into housing, the theatre was preserved. Tours are being provided by board members who are actively working to restore the theatre and other experts. While the tour itself is prerecorded, there is a live question and answer session with the tour guides.
For more information on the theatre today, check out last month’s issue of The Denver North Star, still available online, which has a feature on North Denver theaters.
The Elitch Theatre tour will be on October 7, 2021, from 5:30-6:45pm and costs $12.
Howard Berkeley Park Chapel
It wasn’t long ago that the fate of the chapel was a hot topic in North Denver. Owners of The Olinger Moore Howard Chapel had planned to demolish the mortuary and the land was to be used for townhomes, but a group of residents fought to preserve the site and an owner who wanted to repurpose the building rather than demolish it, was found. The chapel is currently being used by Redemption Church Denver.
Berkeley residents Laurie and Tom Simmons prepared the Denver Landmark application for the chapel in 2020 and Tom is one of the tour guides along with two others.
Like the Elitch tour, it is prerecorded but with a live question and answer session with the tour guides.
The Howard Berkeley Park Chapel tour will be on October 11, 2021 from 5:30-6:45pm and costs $12.
Few North Denver homes are as recognizable as the Bosler house, located across from Highland Park. Built in 1875, the two story home has a tower stretching up above a 3rd story. The building was designated a Denver landmark in 1984 and is listed on multiple historic registries.
Unlike the other two, this tour is fully prerecorded, but is available on demand through October 17th and only costs $6. The 49 minute video features a tour by Jan and Steve Davis, the current owners of the home, who renovated and preserved the unique North Denver icon.
Ticket sales for all tours benefit The Denver Architecture Foundation. For more information on the organization, or to purchase tickets, please visit https://denverarchitecture.org or call 303-390-1653.