The Orpheum Theater, a local landmark in historic downtown Flagstaff, Arizona, was built by John Weatherford, who owned of the Weatherford Hotel just up the street in the early 1900s.
The theater was actually born from an old movie house. Weatherford showed Flagstaff's first movies in his Majestic Opera House, which opened in 1911. All was well at the Majestic until just hours after revelers celebrating the New Year of 1915 had gone home, when the roof and most of the walls of building collapsed under 61 inches of snow. Weatherford pulled his projector out of the ruins of the Majestic and the movies moved temporarily onto east Aspen Street in a building that was once a Babbitt garage.
Weatherford began to rebuild his theater and renamed it the Orpheum. The bigger and better theater opened its doors in August 1917 and delighted audiences for decades. It closed in the late 1990s when the company that owned it left Flagstaff.
After a three year hiatus, the Orpheum was revived. Following months of extensive renovations, the theater reopened in late 2002 poised to entertain a new generation of Flagstaff residents and visitors.