Aurora, CO – Six months after the mass shooting of a sold out crowd for The Dark Knight Rises sent chills through Aurora, Colorado, the theater held a re-opening ceremony.
For many, the re-opening is being seen as way to move forward. Others see the move as callous and insensitive.
On Thursday, the Aurora Century movie theater re-opened it’s doors for the first time since the tragic shooting. A ceremony was held to honor those lost. After the ceremony the theater showed The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
The Denver Post was on the scene to document the event. One of the victim’s fathers, Tom Sullivan, was interviewed by the paper. About attending he says:
“This isn’t only the place we lost Alex. This is the place we also live. We love to come to the movies.”
The theater was guarded on every corner, and the parking lot filled up quickly with cars. There were 2,000 tickets put aside for victims, first responders, volunteers, and employees from several metro-area hospitals. It has not been reported how many of those tickets were used.
Alex Milano, 19, was in theater eight the night of the shooting. He tells the Post:
“If it doesn’t reopen, he (the gunman) wins. Plain and simple.”
Not everyone agrees with the re-opening however. Tom Jenkins, a nearby mall employee, says:
“I find it disrespectful. In my view it’s like building a playground on a cemetery.”
He personally believes the theater should be “bulldozed.”
Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan spoke at the event:
“Today, we take another step forward. We must put aside our differences for a greater good and avoid the use of violence to solve problems. Now it is time to show the world who we are. Aurora is strong. Aurora is caring. We will move forward with hope and confidence of better days to come.”
Here is a photo of patrons waiting for the first movie shown in six months to start:
Do you think the re-opening the theater was the right move by the city of Aurora, Colorado?