ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – One of Albuquerque’s oldest theaters is officially back open. The Lobo Theater was a church for nearly twenty years, but now it’s once again being used for its original purpose – entertainment.


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Open in 1938, the Historic Lobo Theater on Central near Girard is now getting a new lease on life. “You can eat here, you can have tasty libations here,” said J. Richard Rivas, the owner of The Lobo Lounge and Events Center.

The theater had been used for church services for nearly 20 years. “The pandemic and everything else, they’ve left,” said Rivas. “We had an opportunity.”

Rivas has been working since April to renovate the 83-year-old venue. He added a full bar that will include food, a new sound system and lights, and gave it a 40s noir vibe.

While it’s gotten a big facelift this year, not everything is new. Rivas designed the venue around an old mirror in the women’s restroom, which has been there since the building first opened.

The Lobo will show the Night of the Living Dead and The Rocky Horror Picture Show next Saturday night.