Aurora, Colorado is more than just a suburb of Denver. This highly populous city also boasts a storied history all its own and plenty to keep residents and visitors, alike, occupied. Whether readers are visiting Aurora for the first time or they’ve lived in the area for decades, it’s always easy to find something new to do.
Aurora: A Brief History
The area now known as Aurora was first incorporated as a town in the 1880s and was called Fletcher after a local businessman. It was renamed Aurora by its inhabitants in 1907 and only began to grow out of nearby Denver’s shadow in the 1970s and 80s when it became the fastest-growing city in the United States.
As of the turn of the 21st century, Aurora has surpassed the capital city in terms of land area, though much of it remains undeveloped. Since then, the city has opened the Aurora Sports Park and now hosts over 30 tournaments each year. The National Civic League offered Aurora its coveted All-American City designation in 2008, and the city has only continued to grow and thrive from there.
Places of Interest in Aurora, CO
Whether families are visiting Aurora for a day, a week, or a month, there are plenty of attractions to keep everyone interested. The city is home to numerous parks, museums, and recreational facilities along with shopping centers and restaurants, and it’s just a short trip away from plenty of Colorado’s other top attractions. Visitors should be sure to check out:
Cherry Creek State Park
Cherry Creek State Park is a beautiful, natural prairie environment surrounding an 880-acre reservoir. Locals and visitors alike flock to the park for action-packed summers of picnicking, hiking, camping, horseback riding, and model airplane flying, and the park even boasts a family shooting range.
Aurora History Museum
The Aurora History Museum may be small, but it boasts an eclectic range of artifacts and relics related to the city’s unique history. It only takes a couple of hours to tour the facility, so there’s no excuse for skipping this gem.
The Vintage Theatre
The Vintage Theatre has only been open since 2002 but it has already developed a reputation as an area favorite. There are shows year-round, so even in the winter, guests can grab a drink at the bar and enjoy a popular local production.
Southlands is a great place to gather with family or friends to shop, dine together, see a movie, or just appreciate the charming atmosphere. This outdoor lifestyle center features all the most popular stores and restaurants, plus a theatre and other entertainment venues and a state-of-the-art health club.
Plains Conservation Center
The Plains Conservation Center is an outdoor educational facility that dates back to 1949. It was created with the goal of teaching people about Colorado’s conservation efforts and eco-history and includes both a prairie education center and a historic site complete with a recreated blacksmith shop, schoolhouse, and Cheyenne camp.
The Aurora Fox Arts Center
If a visit to the Vintage Theatre wasn’t enough to scratch a theater lover’s itch, it’s time to head to the Aurora Fox Arts Center. This intimate performance space has been open since 1985 and is known for its Broadway-quality productions.
Aurora, CO Nightlife
Aurora may be a family-friendly city, but don’t be fooled. It also has plenty to offer in the way of nightlife. Whether visitors are looking to grab a quick drink, go out for a delicious dinner, or dance the night away, they’ll be sure to find the perfect spot. For a great night out with friends, try:
- Dry Dock Brewing Company
- BrewAbility Lab
- Stampede Mesquite Grill & Dance Emporium
- Sand Creek Lounge
- The Kasbah
Enjoy Aurora, CO
No matter where people live, Aurora is worth a visit. From beautiful parks and fascinating museums to shopping, restaurants, nightlife, and more, there’s something for everyone in this Colorado city.