AURORA | The great wait on Dallas Street is finally over. Well, for beer lovers, anyway.
After months of drawn-out construction, Cheluna Brewing Company will be the second business to open inside north Aurora’s Stanley Marketplace on Dec. 1, the new brewery announced on social media last month.
Cheluna, formerly known as Casita Brewing Co. before a naming spat spurred the owners to change the title, will open with a small celebration the evening of Dec. 1, according to co-owner Javiér Pérez. The festivities will begin at Stanley at 5 p.m., with musicians Tom Hagerman of DeVotchKa and Ann Liu Konieczny scheduled to perform from 6 to 7 p.m. La Loteria food truck will be serving Mexican-style fare throughout the evening.
Pérez began laying the groundwork for Cheluna, along with his wife, Jennifer, in 2014, after nearly 25 years of home brewing in the couple’s garage. Many of Javiér’s beers blend his mixed Mexican and German ancestry, he told The Sentinel in an interview last year.
Pérez, who daylights as an emergency room physician at the VA Hospital in Denver, said he chose to open his first brick-and-mortar at Stanley in part because the neighborhoods around the future market have long been under-served.
“It’s a dry watering hole and now it’s going to be full for all the people around here,” he said in August. “This is going to be a breath of fresh air.”
Pérez, guided by friends at Spangalang Brewing in Denver’s Five Points, has been heading the brewing operations at Cheluna.
OPENair Academy, an early childhood learning facility, is the only other business currently operating within the Stanley building, according to the facility’s co-owner and founder Mark Shaker. OPENair, which enrolls children ages six-weeks-old to pre-kindergarten, became the first operation to quietly open its doors Nov. 21 in Stanley.
A steady cadence of openings is expected to continue through the beginning of next year, according to Shaker, who said the facility should be fully operational by the end of January.
But about a dozen enterprises — most of them restaurants — are still expected to begin serving customers before New Year’s, including Comida Cantina, Sweet Cow Ice Cream, Logan House Coffee Company and the Stanley Beer Hall, Shaker said. All of those businesses should be serving food and beverages by Dec. 14.
“It’s starting to take shape,” Shaker said. “It’s been a long grind, but I think everyone will be happy with the finished product.”
Other retailers slated to open in the some 100,000-square-foot warehouse include The Infinite Monkey Theorem, Glazed and Confuzed, Rosenberg’s Bagels and Denver Biscuit Co.
Under development for more than two years, the Stanley project technically falls under the purview of Stanley JV, which is an amalgamation of Flightline Ventures — controlled by developers Shaker, Lorin Ting and Megan Von Wald — as well as the Denver-based Westfield Companies.
Housed in the former Stanley Aviation manufacturing facility at 2501 Dallas St., the estimated $30 million project will bring a total of more than 50 new businesses to Aurora.