5 Reasons to Spend the Holidays on the Colorado Historic Opera Houses Circuit

For the holidays, visit the Colorado Historic Opera Houses Circuit for the perfect winter escape! Warm your body and soul at live performances in historic opera houses, the perfect après to a day skiing powder, touring historic downtowns, and shopping for unique gifts in local shops.

Holiday events are on tap at the Sheridan Opera House (Telluride), Tabor Opera House (Leadville), Wheeler Opera House (Aspen), and Wright Opera House (Ouray), with tours available at the Central City Opera House (Central City).

📷: Eric Chinn

5 Reasons

See these five reasons to spend your holidays on the Colorado Historic Opera Houses Circuit.

1) Live Entertainment to Warm Your Soul

Visit the opera houses for local holiday celebrations, kids' theater, rock, bluegrass, Tejano music, comedy, magic, and more festive fun! From Grammy-nominee singer/songwriter Jewel to Kiltro's Latin indie rock to comedians Becky Robinson and Kevin Nealon, magician Justin Willman and many more, you’ll find great artists along the Circuit. Check our calendar of events!

2) Colorado History You Won’t Find Elsewhere

The opera houses’ special settings add to the festive spirit. The Circuit opera houses were built between 1878 and 1913 and still look much the same today as they did back in the day. You’ll enjoy a unique holiday night out or a special opera house tour.

3) Fantastic Films

Whether you’re watching the classic “A Christmas Story,” the fascinating story of the 10th Mountain Division heroes in “Mission St. Mangart,” or more, you’ll welcome a relaxing night with the big screen.

Aspen, Colorado

4) Mountain-Town Charm for the Holidays

Join in as Circuit opera houses host community yule nights, holiday celebrations, and Shop Small holiday events. Revel in quiet holidays, local shopping, and small-town cheer!

Aspen Colorado Skiing

5) The Joys of Colorado Snow

Colorado is snow’s perfect state, and there are plenty of opportunities to catch freshies along the Circuit. From Aspen and Telluride resorts to cross-country skiing, fat biking, and snowmobiling, you’ll find unparalleled ways to enjoy the snow. Or visit Ouray’s steaming hot springs while looking up at snow-covered peaks.

Infamous Stringdusters at Wheeler by J. Mimna

📷: J. Mimna

Holiday Events

Check out these holiday happenings!

Central City Opera House, Central City

The intimate 550-seat jewel-box Central City Opera House, built in 1878, is open for tours through the holidays and year 'round through the Gilpin Historical Society.

  • December – Tour Central City Opera House
  • Dec. 1-4 – Central City’s Tommyknocker Holidays, with a parade, tree lighting and carols, and holiday bazaar with food, crafts, and contests.

In the winter months, Central City Opera, the nation’s fifth oldest professional opera company, presents events across the region. Let them whet your appetite for Central City Opera’s summer opera festival, held in the opera house in Central City, only 35 miles west of Denver.

  • Nov. 18-19 - L’Esprit de Noël Holiday Home Tour, in Englewood
  • Dec. 11-18 - Amahl and the Night Visitors, in Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver

Robert Randolph and the Family Band at Sheridan by Sarah Schwab Photography

📷: Sarah Schwab Photography

Sheridan Opera House, Telluride

At the Sheridan Opera House, you can see details such as restorations of the theater’s original decorative stenciling while taking in these shows:

  • Dec. 2-4 – Young People's Theater presents Disney's Beauty and the Beast: kid's theater, 6 p.m.
  • Dec. 10 – Jerry Joseph: jam-rock, 9 p.m.

Plus a week-long Holiday Concert Series:

  • Dec. 26 – Murder! at the Sheridan Opera House: murder mystery theater, 8 p.m.
  • Dec. 27 – Kiltro: Latin indie rock, 8 p.m.
  • Dec. 27 – Dinner with Jewel: private dinner and concert ticket for the 28th with Grammy-nominee singer/songwriter, 6:30 p.m.
  • Dec. 28 – Jewel: Grammy-nominee singer/songwriter, 5:30 p.m. and 8:30p.m.
  • Dec. 29 – The PettyBreakers: Tom Petty tribute band, 8 p.m.
  • Dec. 30 – Yonder Mountain String Band: progressive bluegrass, 9 p.m.
  • Dec. 31 – New Year's Eve Galaxy Gala with Yonder Mountain String Band, 10:30 p.m.

Tabor Opera House, Leadville

While Tabor tours and events have ended for the season, Leadville welcomes guests to enjoy snow sports, museums, local history, and more.

Wheeler Opera House by Jordan Curet

📷: Jordan Curet

Wheeler Opera House, Aspen

Leading into the holidays, come to the Wheeler Opera House for Tejano music, a film on the 10th Mountain Division heroes, comedy acts, and a magician in this long-standing center for Aspen culture.

  • Nov. 13 – Los Chicos del 512: The Selena Experience, 5 p.m.
  • Dec. 14 – Mission Mt. Mangart film, 7:30 p.m.
  • Dec. 17 – Becky Robinson: Heavy Pour Tour, 7:30 p.m.
  • Dec. 28 – Belly Up Aspen and Wheeler Opera House present An Evening with Kevin Nealon, 7:30 p.m.
  • Dec. 31 – Justin Willman, 6 p.m.

Wright Opera House by Faren Wilbur

📷: Faren Wilbur

Wright Opera House, Ouray

Enjoy movie nights and a holiday gala at the Wright Opera House. Be sure to admire the famed Mesker iron facade on the Wright Opera House, which won a 2022 award for its historic preservation initiatives.

  • Nov. 30 – The Aeronauts, 7 p.m.
  • Dec. 3 – Yule Night Celebration
  • Dec. 14 – Cyrano, 7 p.m.
  • Dec. 16 – A Christmas Story *More-Than-A-Movie-Event*, 7 p.m.
  • Dec. 18 – Ouray International Film Festival Holiday Community Celebration, 6 p.m.

Moving into the new year, you can find boy bands, classic rock, operatic arias with art songs and spirituals, bluegrass, a comedy festival, dance, kids' theater, folk and Americana, experimental music, indie and soul, and even an acrobatic troupe.

Check our calendar for winter lineups!