By Libby Smith

CBS4 is a sponsor of the 13th Annual Doors Open Denver, a two-day event celebrating architecture and art in Denver. There are 68 sites open to the public, 51 Insider Tours, 6 cultural events, and dozens of family-friendly activities. For a guide of all the events go to

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DENVER (CBS4) – The Historic Elitch Theatre in the Highlands will be open as part of Doors Open Denver. Members of the public will be able to take self-guided tours of the space for free. There will be experts on hand to give some history of the space, and a “5 Minutes of Fame” activity, where visitors can participate in an on-stage reading of a play.

LINK: Historic Elitch Theatre

“It’s a great opportunity to be inside the building. And it’s a wonderful architectural piece with the octagon shape,” said Tracy Frickey, president of the Historic Elitch Theatre.

(credit CBS)

The theatre is 126-years-old. It was the first theatre to be run by a woman, and the longest running summer stock theatre in the nation. Actors like Douglas Fairbanks, Cecil B DeMille, Vincent Price, and Grace Kelly started their careers there.

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(credit CBS)

“The grounds were incredibly beautiful. There was the amusement park. There were gardens. When the actors and actresses would come it felt like they were getting away on vacation,” Frickey explained.

The Historic Elitch Theatre has been undergoing a 15-year renovation. It hosts a variety of summer program to raise money to fund the on-going restoration.

(credit CBS)

“We are hoping to get it back to a full functioning theatre, a community center, a cultural hub, because it was one of the first cultural hubs in Denver,” Frickey told CBS4.

LINK: Door Open Denver

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Libby Smith is a Special Projects Producer at CBS4. If you have a story you’d like to tell CBS4 about, call 303-863-TIPS (8477) or visit the News Tips section.