We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelly Langley-Cook and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kelly, how do you think about risk?
We are lucky to have several different personalities with several different ways of seeing the world at Atlas Theater. My husband, Jeff, is the big risk taker. He sees what can be, and then he multiplies it by 1000 and then he convinces everyone else that we can do it. Adam, our manager, is always on board with the big dreams and helps Jeff to run in the direction of… say… creating a hand carved stone labyrinth in our new back yard space (!!!) TJ, Keiran, and I are a little bit more measured. We make sure that all of the dreams have a good grounding in reality. The five of us together typically end up making some pretty great, and risky, decisions, but never more than we can handle together. Thanks to Jeff and Adam’s big dreams we now have a full bar, new floor, and big back yard!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
The Atlas theater is the most transformable space in all of Northern Colorado. Because I have a heart for independence and creativity, one of the things we prioritize is keeping our space flexible. Anyone having a wedding, anniversary, quinceanera, or baby shower can walk in to our space and make it truly their own. How did we do this? We built almost everything with community hands. We have tried to remain true to the vibe of the building by hiring local artists, stone workers, carpenters, and builders to use as many reclaimed materials as possible and restore a building that was once basically abandoned.
No, it has not been easy. There has been a lot of fear and heartache and frustration along the way… but seeing brides dance with their grandpas, students greet their guests after their graduation ceremony, and grooms give each other that first married kiss has been totally worth it.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I will give you the perfect day in Downtown Greeley:
7am – Coffee at John Galt (yes! that’s our place too- inside the Atlas theater)
8am – Pick up pastries at La Petite French Bakery – then more coffee at Margie’s Java Joint
9am – Hit some downtown shops: The Nerd Store, Blush Boutique, Mariposa, and Warm Hugs
10 am- Stop by the Madison and Main Gallery on 16th street
11 am – Take a class in printing at Wonderhand Studios
12 pm- Lunch at Luna’s Tacos
1 pm- Antiquing at Brooklyn Finds Design Co. and Lincoln Park Emporium
2 pm- Catch a matinee at the Kress
4 pm- I don’t think it’s too early for margaritas? Go to the Rio!
5 pm- We can either take a nap, or get a third cup of coffee at the Blue Mug6
6 pm- Pizza at Roma
7 pm- Grab a drink at Patricks
8 pm- Concert or Comedy show at the Moxi
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shout out to the city of Greeley! I know what the rest of Colorado thinks… the opposite of Hawaii, right? Well, I like to think of us as a well kept secret. We have more art, music, food, and activity than one person could possibly do in a weekend… and our housing is still *mostly* affordable. We are so thankful for the Greeley Creative District, The Downtown Development Authority, The City itself, and all the other local business owners in our area who lift us up, partner with us, and encourage us!
All photos by Woody Myers