Check in with our friends over at BRUN
Every first Friday of the month Berkeley hosts one of the best Art Walks in Colorado. Galleries, bars, restaurants and boutiques along Tennyson Street (and beyond) open their doors to hordes of art gazers in search of art, music, culture, and inspiration! The art walks serve as the perfect opportunity to grab dinner and drinks with some friends and immerse yourselves in some of the best cultural arts found in Colorado.
Currently under renovation, the Historic Elitch Gardens Theater opened in 1890 and was home to the first movies shown in Denver in the early 20th century. It was frequented by many of the day’s greatest actors, and because of the large volumes of people it drew it played a significant role in building the Berkeley neighborhood you see today. Click here to learn more about the renovation project and volunteer!
Lakeside arose in 1908 in contention with Elitch Gardens where alcoholic beverages were not permitted. Lakeside offered alcohol and thrill rides- an obvious draw for people all over Colorado and yet another great contribution to the Berkeley neighborhood. Lakeside still opens its gates to thrill-seekers every year from May to September. Visit their SITE for more information on hours and ticket prices.
Cesar Chavez Park
Rocky Mountain Lake Park
Berkeley Gardens Elementary School
Rocky Mountain Prep
Arrupe Jesuit High School
Regis Jesuit University
St. Catherine of Sienna Catholic School
The Berkeley area’s humble beginnings came about in 1863 when the first homesteads in the area were granted. They were later sold in 1879 and turned into an alfalfa farm named Berkeley Farms. By 1892, 450 people lived in the area and the town named itself the Town of North Denver.
One of the main attractions that brought people to the Berkeley neighborhood was Elitch Gardens which was originally located at 38th and Tennyson. Elitch Gardens opened in 1890 as a zoological and botanical gardens. Elitch’s had a strong influence on the art culture in the neighborhood.
The first movies shown in Denver were screened at Elitch’s. Elitch Theater became known across the country as having some of the best summer stock and many of the top actors of the early 20th century performed here. According to the Denver Householder’s Directories, Elitch Gardens looked like a microcosm of the Berkeley neighborhood today, with bakeries, grocery stores, hardware and furniture stores, tailors and dry cleaners, barbers and beauty shops, physicians and pharmacies.
WHY THE TROLLY?
Due to Elitch’s popularity, the “Berkeley Motor” became one of the most traveled trolley lines in the city. Newspapers began advertising large homes listed as “along the line known as the Berkeley Motor” which helped start a slow but steady growth of residents to the area. Between 1926 and 1950, the number of properties on Tennyson between W. 38th and W. 44th grew by 50%.
Realizing the need for services, the Alcott Post Office moved to Tennyson Street in 1896. This was quickly followed by the addition of Eaker’s grocery store, a movie theater, a drug store, and furniture and hardware stores. A rail line, known as the “Berkeley Motor,” was added to the area in 1888.
The Town of North Denver changed its name to Berkeley in 1898 and was officially annexed in 1902 when it was included in the state legislature’s official creation of Denver as a city and county. After annexation, Berkeley saw a slow but steady growth in its popularity, both with city residents and visitors.
The area continues to grow today, both in residential and commercial properties. The neighborhood prides itself on the variety of services available as well as the many special events that bring people to the area, most notably the First Friday Art Walks.
And while the types of services and merchants may have changed since the early days, the charm and history of the neighborhood can still be seen in many shops along Tennyson were locally owned and operated businesses occupy original buildings.
Tennyson Berkeley Business Association was established as a 501 (c) 6 December 2014 to provide a support and communication network for Tennyson/Berkeley businesses in order to collaborate on events and marketing efforts, the goal being to strengthen and promote Tennyson and Berkeley businesses while honoring the diversity, history and future of the neighborhood.
MONTHLY MEETINGS HELD ON THE 3RD WEDNESDAY OF THE MONTH
OPEN TO ALL BUSINESS OWNERS AND MANAGERS.
MEETINGS START AT 9AM at FEARL | 3936 Tennyson St, Denver, CO 80212
Quarterly Member Socials, details TBD, if interested in hosting please reach out.