On September 19, 1927, KiMo Theatre opened by hosting an overflow crowd for an evening of performances by local Native Americans. The show proved an apt premiere for the Pueblo Deco-style space, which was designed with a unique blending of Art Deco flourishes and Native American motifs. The theme carried through to the smallest details—the ceiling beams were textured to look like logs, and even the air vents mimicked Navajo rugs. Amid these intricate trappings, the theater showcased movies, vaudeville shows, and performances by luminaries such as Gloria Swanson and Ginger Rogers.
The KiMo Theatre retains its luster today, thanks to a meticulous restoration and standing on the National Register of Historic Places. The original decor has been updated with a few new touches, such as the chandeliers shaped like Native American funerary canoes that hang above the auditorium. The onstage entertainment still encompasses an engaging mix of new and classic films, dance and theatrical performances, live concerts, and visual art shows featuring tap-dancing paintings.