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Arts & Culture

Historic downtown Raton offers a glimpse into the history of a small railroad community that became more than just a stop on the Atchison, Topeka, and the Santa Fe Railroad. A collection of Victorian buildings line historic First Street across from the original Santa Fe Train Depot.

Next to the train station is one of the few original Wells Fargo buildings still in existence nationally.  It is home to the Old Pass Art Gallery and Raton MainStreet, Inc., a non-profit corporation which concentrates on the revitalization of our downtown area.

Just one block to the west on 2nd Street, the Shuler Theater, a restored 1914 opera house with near perfect acoustics, is still used today for live summer professional repertory theater, the performing arts series conducted by the Raton Arts & Humanities Council, holiday performances of A Christmas Carol, various musical and theater performances.  It is also home to the Santa Fe Trail School for the Performing Arts which provides both children’s and youth theater programs.

In the same block on 2nd Street as the Shuler Theater, is another historic theater, the El Raton, which offers the latest in Dolby Surround Sound© technology, and is also the only movie theater within 100 miles to offer Dolby 3D Digital Cinema©.

Within walking distance of the Shuler and El Raton is the Raton Museum, operated by the Colfax County Society of Art History & Archeology, originally organized in 1939.  The Society is a non-profit corporation which recognizes the need to preserve and promote the diverse history and culture of our area and also exhibits traveling shows from other areas.  The museum is normally open Tuesday thru Saturday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.



July Fourth activities include the International Santa Fe Trail Balloon Rally, a festive parade, and a spectacular fireworks display.

In addition to parks and art galleries in and around Raton, there are festivals and year-round cultural activities: spring and fall street fairs as well as rodeos and county fairs. Other special celebrations include the Raton Chamber of Commerce's Cinco de Mayo Dance and classic Cowboy Ball along with Raton MainStreet's Cinco de Mayo Cultural Celebration, and the Gate City Music Festival on Labor Day weekend.