County Announces Oppenheimer Premiere Event With Programming And Exhibits At SALA July20


Los Alamos County, in partnership with SALA Event Center (SALA) and Los Alamos Commerce and Development Corporation (LACDC) is hosting an Oppenheimer Premiere Event Thursday, July 20 beginning at 3 p.m. at SALA (2551 Central Ave., Los Alamos).

The event includes programming and exhibits that promise attendees an immersive experience only found here in Los Alamos, New Mexico.  The event will include exhibits, such as the J. Robert Oppenheimer Memorial Committee Oppenheimer installation – a collaboration with the Los Alamos History Museum and Los Alamos National Lab (LANL); an immersive installation of Oppenheimer’s living room with set pieces from the Oppenheimer movie, courtesy of NBC Universal and the Los Alamos History Museum; Bradbury Science Museum will have their Fat Man replica on site and the Los Alamos Historical Society will have the General’s car; and science and Oppenheimer merchandise will be available from Gadget’s Store and artist Brenda Fleming. Live music, an artist demo and food and drinks from Señor Tortas and Bathtub Row Brewing Co-op will round off the experience and provide an atmosphere to mingle and celebrate the long-awaited release of the movie.

The public is also invited to join a panel discussion in the Social Center from 3-4 p.m. The discussion will highlight Los Alamos: History, Present and Future, featuring: 

  • William I. White, Senior Advisor for Department of Energy Environmental Management,
  • Wendy Behrman, National Parks Service Manhattan Project National Historic Park Superintendent 
  • Nancy Bartlit, WWII Historian and Author 
  • Moderator:  Don Cobb, retired, Los Alamos National Laboratory 

Also available to the public, SALA’s Roxy Theater will highlight “Insights from Documentaries” featuring The Moment in Time: The Manhattan Project at 3:30 p.m.

Although the Manhattan Film Series showing at 6 p.m. and the Oppenheimer showings at 5 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. are for ticket holders only, the public is welcome to come to the “Main Gate” ticket booth to pick up their free visitor pass and enjoy everything else going on at SALA, exhibits, panel discussions, and documentaries.

The festivities will continue after July 20. SALA is continuing the exhibits and activities for a 10-day Oppenheimer Festival, along with the ability to purchase tickets to the long-awaited Christopher Nolan Oppenheimer movie. A full schedule of events is available on the SALA website.

“After months of waiting, the movie is finally here. Team Oppie partnered with local and regional stakeholders to create opportunities for collaboration, and help local businesses and organizations develop unique “Oppenheimer” experiences, products, programming, or attractions,” said Asst. Public Information Officer, Leslie Bucklin, “The Premiere Event is a time to celebrate how far we have come.” “Project Oppenheimer,” an initiative started in January 2023, recognized the big screen has landed Los Alamos on the big stage, providing a unique opportunity to create an environment open to visitors, building curiosity and cultivating relationships to share the “real” Los Alamos, no matter the pre-existing perception. Los Alamos is working as a community to provide ways for visitors to learn the true stories behind the historic events featured in the Oppenheimer film. Bucklin notes that the impact the community will feel because of Nolan’s movie may just be getting started.

“Although we have seen a significant increase in interest in the local history, I believe curiosity and inquiries into Los Alamos will grow much more over the next year, after the movie is released,” Bucklin said.

For more information about all things Oppenheimer, including links to the Manhattan Project National Historical Park and LANL pages and tours, a calendar of events, education resources, local offerings, feature articles about Los Alamos and J. Robert Oppenheimer, and much more, the County has created a host website, which continues to grow as more resources become available: