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I worked at the Celebrity Sports Center... It was one of the best jobs ever. I have great memories of that place. The best thing about it for me was the people that worked there. It was an awesome group of people, people that I am still in touch with today. I made lifelong friends there. It saddened me when I heard of it shutting down.
I for one am very proud to be a part of Denver (and Celebrity Sports Center) history.


Hi Tracy. That would be an awesome job! You weren't alone in your sadness: I think we all mourned a loss of childhood and fun when Celebrity closed.

Tracy - When did you work there? I worked there as well in 1983-84. I remember that the basement arcade had the first video jukebox in Denver. We would skip school just to go to the arcade and watch those videos...

Thank you for this piece. It's sad that a place that loomed so large in the imagination and even in childhood dreams is so completely gone from reality. Those bowling lanes seemed to go on forever. The water slides and haunted shooting gallery were my favorite attractions.

JH, thanks for your comment. It's amazing how much the city has changed overall, and Celebrity was a big loss. Friends and colleagues from other states have commented that it *sounds* magical, without even having seen it.

Was Celebrity Sports Center ever segregated or practice any kind of racial policy? Obviously the 50s and 60s were a time of great racial unrest, so I'm curious.

Hello, and thanks for your question. I have not found any mention of Celebrity being racially segregated. Whether anyone was made to feel unwelcome (entirely possible, especially in that era), based on my research I don't believe it was official policy.

Thanks for a fun post. I celebrated many birthdays there and always wax on about its wonders. Oh the thrill of trying to stop yourself halfway down a slide to wait for your friend to catch up to you!

Curious if the library has any archives on Funtastic Nathan’s, another awesome spot for 1980s kids, which was located in the basement of Cinderella City... :)

Hi Kate. I seem to remember a lifeguard scolding us kids for doing that slide trick!

Ah, Funtastic Nathan's. Human hamster tunnels, anyone? A quick search shows we don't have collections specifically related to Funtastic Nathan's or Cinderella City, but we do have materials on Cinderella City in the Rocky Mountain News clippings and photographs, and in the Public Service Company Records. We also have 80+ cards on Cinderella City in the Western History Subject Index, and one referencing "Funtastic Natahan's" leaving the mall in August 1994 (the same year Celebrity closed). Looks like 1994 was a sad year for Denver kids.

Thanks so much, Laura! I will have to dig into those Cinderella City archives sometime! I was 13 years old in 1994, so I was probably transitioning from a sweet Celebrity Sports Center/Funtastic Nathan’s kiddo into an angsty soon-to-be Paris on the Platte (RIP) patron. I sure miss old school Denver. Thanks for your research!


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