The capital of Colorado, Denver is a fascinating and historic city, with a number of unusual attractions besides the usual museums and art galleries.
Denver, the Mile High City, is the capital of Colorado and dates back to the Old West era. The city is full of history, with beautiful 19th-century buildings, museums, art galleries, and more. It is also the place to go before heading to the ski resorts in the Rocky Mountains nearby.
The following are some of the top unusual attractions of Denver, waiting to be explored including a shop full of 1980s nostalgia, a unique history center, and a church dedicated to the worship of cannabis.
1. Fifty-Two 80’s
Fifty-Two ’80s is the place for lovers of the 1980s culture. This fascinating shop is set in the antique district of southern Denver. Here an amazing collection of nostalgic and vintage items can be found. It looks a little like a museum for those who loved the 1980s and 1990s.
The shop has a collection of pop culture items in the way of clothing, toys, and memorabilia spanning 15 years between the 1980s and 1990s. Some familiar and well-loved characters here include the Garbage Pail Kids, Cabbage Patch Dolls, Care Bears, Pac-Man, Atari, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Beetlejuice, and more.
The owners believe they have more than 4,500 items in their collection relating to these much-loved characters, including trading cards, pinball machines, stuffed toys, action figures, cardboard cutouts, video game cartridges, posters, puzzles, and Halloween masks. Fifty-Two ’80s is colorful, enjoyable and so very nostalgic. Even their website is a lot of fun.
2. History Colorado Center
More than a stuffy museum, History Colorado Center is more like an actual time machine, taking you back into Colorado’s past. History Colorado Center covers the history of the state, right from its geologic development up until the current day. A time machine with a giant map presides over the collection. Using the machine, visitors can toggle their way through the map to learn about different times and places in Colorado.
Among the sections to visit is the Mesa Verde section with exhibits relating to the Ancestral Puebloans. The Denver Diorama is a particular favorite, as it portrays the city as it was in the 1800s. Destination Colorado is a perfect replica of a small town from the early 1900s. Visitors can walk through a silver mine shaft, a Japanese internment camp, and even a ski jump simulation.
What makes this museum really special is that most experiences here are hands-on, with computerized interactive and walk-through installations.
3. International Church of Cannabis
This colorful building used to be a Lutheran Church, which has stood here since the early 1900s. However, the church was eventually abandoned and in April 2017, was reopened as a place of worship for a brand-new religion, “Elevationism.” The church is dedicated to the spiritual benefits of cannabis.
While the outside of the church still looks antiquated and ordinary, the interior is flamboyantly colored in a Technicolor display. There is a huge “weed” sign, a beautiful neon rainbow mural on the ceiling, and rows of pews for worshipers to smoke on.
This new religion doesn’t have any particular dogma and worshipers don’t need to convert from their current religion. They just have to recognize cannabis as being a sacrament.
A new offering launched recently called “Beyond,” which is a meditative experience including laser lights, sound, and projection mapping. The experience starts with a nine-minute guided meditation and takes you on a journey through the wisdom of the ages. This is followed up by a 25-minute psychedelic light show, backed by classic rock music.
Have fun exploring the other side of Denver. This city has all this and more to offer.
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