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By Elisabeth Monaghan

With the recent opening of the Alamo Drafthouse in the Sloan’s Lake area, residents of Edgewater and surrounding communities have another great entertainment option. Like other movie theaters, Alamo Drafthouse offers popcorn, candy and soda, but instead of purchasing these in the lobby, Alamo Drafthouse moviegoers order from the comfort of their seats. There is also a selection of made-to-order entrees, sandwiches, salads and snacks – all prepared by the theater’s executive chef. The theater also serves a variety of “custom” cocktails and craft beers, many of them from local microbreweries. 

With its stringent no-talking, cell phone policy, Alamo Drafthouse also offers a nice sanity break from cell phones or from those addicted to their phones. Anyone caught texting, answering their phones or chatting with others in the theater will be shown the door. They also will not receive any refunds on their tickets. 

Another feature of Alamo Drafthouse Denver is Barfly, a sit-down bar that is themed around Beat poets and the Denver art scene. Moviegoers can arrive early for a film and enjoy a cold one while listening to live musicians or partaking in a trivia game. 

Two of Alamo Drafthouse’s most popular offerings are its specialty and signature screenings, specifically created for each theater. For example, Alamo Drafthouse in Littleton partners with InTea, a teahouse on Main Street in Littleton, for its Afternoon Tea series. Attendees are served tea and treats while they screen period films like “Anna Karenina,” “Little Women” and “Bright Star.” 

Alamo Drafthouse Denver hosted a “Tampopo Beer Dinner,” where attendees dined on Japanese dishes like Edemame, Pork Shoyu Ramen, and Shrimp Ramen, along with paired beers from Great Divide Brewing Company. There are also the “quote-along” events, where the audience is not only allowed to talk, but also encouraged to quote the lines from the classic films they are screening.

During the summer, Alamo Drafthouse offers its “Kids Camp” screenings, where children are treated to such films as “Matilda” or “Sing.” Alamo Drafthouse Denver donates 100 percent of the ticket sales these screenings to local organizations, including Girls Inc. of Metro Denver.

One of the greatest differentiators for Alamo Drafthouse is its commitment to the individual communities in which the theaters are located. As Steve Bessette, creative director for Alamo Drafthouse Denver and Littleton, explains, they are not some new company staking a claim in the neighborhood. In fact, before the theater opened, its managers made a point of introducing themselves to the community.

“We knew it was important to talk everyone – from community leaders, to teachers, to members of city council – to make sure that everyone understood who we are and to find out what they wanted from us,” Bessette explained. “We’re very intent on being a neighborhood theater and community space.” 

According to Bessette, Alamo Drafthouse is not just about showing “Guardian of the Galaxy.” Those films keep the lights on, but Alamo Drafthouse and its employees want to actively participate in the community by working with schools like Colfax Elementary and organizations like Girls Inc. 

As an entertainment provider, Bessette says Alamo Drafthouse’s ultimate goal is “to bring these incredible cinematic experiences to our audiences. People love coming to the movies and whether that’s because of the programming or because of the specialty screenings, we have a lot to offer. We genuinely care about what people want. We want to know that what is a film they want to see that they haven’t seen. What kind of movie parties and singalongs do they want? Aside from providing this experience for people, we want them to know we’re listening and we take their feedback very seriously.” 

For more information, or to get tickets online, visit www.drafthouse.com/denver.

Local, Live Theatre

Close to Edgewater is another entertainment option for those who appreciate live theater. 

Located in the heart of the 40West Arts District, the Edge strives to bring unique or regional premiers to its audiences. This includes “Mud Blue Sky,” which opened on June 9 and runs through July 2. Vice President and Managing Director Patty Yaconis, who co-founded the theater with her husband Rick, is particularly proud that “Mud Blue Sky” was written by a woman and features mostly female actors playing strong female roles. 

The Edge endeavors to debut shows other theaters in the region have not yet performed. As we mentioned in the May 2017 issue of the Neighborhood Gazette, the theater was the first to get rights to the show “Misery” and was also the first theater in the country to run the show since it closed on Broadway.

To purchase tickets or to learn what shows are playing through the rest of the 2017 season, visit www.theedgetheater.com.