Once known as Denver’s “South Side,” Baker is one of the city’s historically rich enclaves. Since the late 1800s, Queen Anne churches and schools, Denver Square and bungalow-style homes, and streets laid out for a long-gone streetcar system have defined the area, but present-day Baker has lots to offer 21st century Denverites, too. Here’s just a short list of its many gems.
🎞️ The Mayan Theater
This 1930s art deco masterpiece was thankfully saved from demolition in the ‘70s and continues to be a landmark of the neighborhood. The little art house serves up everything from quirky indie flicks to blockbusters and every kind of movie between.
🍖 Smokin’ Yards BBQ
Born in the high elevation of Idaho Springs, this smoked meats joint made its way down the mountain a few years ago. While the Yard family’s traditional BBQ options are what it’s known for, Molly Martin at Westword also recommends the chicken fried steak for a hearty hunk of meat with the perfect crispy, greasy, fried exterior.
💜 Town Hall Collaborative
With something to engage your brain, heart, or body any night of the week, Town Hall Collaborative’s busy calendar showcases everything great about Denver. The multi-purpose, woman-owned community space hosts local political events, dance parties, trivia, night markets, and just about anything you can dream up in an accessible and inclusive environment.
🧙♂️The Wizard’s Chest
Hundreds of ready-to-wear costumes, stage make-up, and wigs galore are bursting from the racks of this legendary Halloween shop and cosplayer’s dreamland. You’ll also find games, puzzles, and brain teasers for all ages, plus weekly Magic the Gathering meetups, Dungeons & Dragons duels, and board game nights hosted in its cool basement lair.
🚸 Dailey Park
This modest greenspace in the middle of a bustling Baker offers welcome respite with plenty of tree shade, a playground, and picnic tables for relaxing. Catch a game of half-court basketball, walk the park’s loop, or wander across the street to the La Familia Rec Center for an indoor swim!
This segment was written by City Cast Denver podcast host Bree Davies.