AURORA, Colo. - The Aurora movie theater where 12 people were killed and 70 others were wounded last July is reopening this week.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, victims and their families will be allowed to tour the complex, now known as Century Aurora.
On Thursday, the complex will officially reopen during an event billed as an evening of remembrance with speeches from state and local officials.
Cinemark, the theater owners, said Theater 9 would be reconfigured before the opening.
According to the Denver Post, the city of Aurora expects to distribute nearly 2,000 tickets to victims, emergency responders and hospital workers.
The group of survivors and victims' family members calling itself "The Families of the Aurora Cinemark Theatre Massacre" said the invitation that arrived during the Christmas holidays was insensitive.
"During the holiday we didn’t think anyone or anything could make our grief worse," the group wrote in a letter. "But you, Cinemark, have managed to do just that by sending us an invitation two days after Christmas inviting us to attend the re-opening of your theater in Aurora where our loved ones were massacred."
However, the father of victim Alex Sullivan said he will be there because his son would want him to be.
"The seat next to me will be saved for Alex, but I'll have an extra hand if you need something to hold on to," Tom Sullivan wrote in his opinion column in the Denver Post.
"For some, the reopening of the theater might be painful, and for others, healing. That is why it is important for the victims and their families to have a choice whether or not they want to attend the reopening," Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan said in a written statement.