Leadville hosts Community Movie Night

The chance to see a movie on a big screen in Leadville is a rare one. The closest movie theater is more than 30 miles away in Summit County. And while a few buildings, either recently purchased or on the market, have the facilities, until the big money comes in to make a decision, a group of locals have taken matters into their own hands to provide the opportunity every other week this summer.

The Lake County Recreation Department, along with volunteers from Remax Aspen Leaf Realty, revived Movies in the Park this summer; the free event was last up and running in 2014.

This Friday, Aug. 25, Ice Palace Park, next to the library at 505 Harrison Ave., will show Disney’s Brave, and votes will be tallied for the Sept. 8 final “viewer’s choice” selection.

Starting at 6 p.m., lawn games, cornhole and volleyball will be set up for the community picnic that precedes the movie. Attendees are encouraged to bring food to cook on the open grills at Ice Palace Park, as well as balls, mitts and whatever outdoor activities they’d like to share. Votes will be collected for the season’s final showing, a choice between Star Wars: Rogue OneThe Jungle BookGrownups or Zootopia. At dusk, the movie begins.

Brave is a Scottish tale that broke many longtime Disney conventions and opened to praise from both children and adults in 2012. From Walt Disney Pictures, “Set in Scotland in a rugged and mythical time, Brave features Merida, an aspiring archer and impetuous daughter of royalty. Merida makes a reckless choice that unleashes unintended peril and forces her to spring into action to set things right.” Brave is rated PG and runs one hour and 42 minutes.

During the movie, Kim Jackson will be selling her famous Harrison Avenue kettle corn, and the Lake County High School cheerleaders will provide concessions. Moviegoers are asked to dress warmly (it is late summer in the high country, after all) and to bring their own seating  i.e. lawn chairs and blankets.

It’s all thanks to donations, volunteers and a handful of local sponsors that this is possible. “We wanted to create free, kid-friendly, outdoor fun for the summer,” says Aislyn Marshall of Aspen Leaf Realty, who, along with Lake County Recreation Director Amber McGee, spearheaded the revival of the tradition. They began by purchasing an inflatable movie screen and by expanding the evening with food and pre-show activities.

By accepting donations and an endless list of sponsorships from local businesses like St. Vincent’s Hospital, Cycles of Life, Leadville Today and People’s Bank, they have been able to sustain the event every other week since June. Others who have helped make these evenings possible are Aspen Leaf’s Mike Morabito and Heather Lindh, and the Rec Department’s Felicia Federico and Karen Lewis.

With the race season finished up in Leadville, locals can expect to see familiar faces from here on out. Get out with the kids and the community this Friday and catch an outdoor flick before the summer is gone for good. For any questions or updates visit the Leadville Community Movie Night Facebook page or call the Lake County Recreation Department at 719-486-7484.