King and Evelyn Hudson first moved to Colorado so King could continue practicing at Fitzsimons Army Hospital and Fort Logan as a dentist for the Army Dental Corps in 1941. After their arrival, they purchased five acres of land and built a log cabin to satisfy Evelyn’s dream of operating a tea cottage. This building housed Evelyn’s successful restaurant, The Country Kitchen, from 1942 to 1961. Although not operated as a tearoom, the famous restaurant gained national acclaim and was featured in Ford Motor Company’s restaurant guide and Life Magazine’s “Famous Roadside Inns”. The entire menu garnered rave reviews. Evelyn grew many of her own vegetables used in the Oval Garden area and decorated the restaurant tables with flowers from her garden.

The Hudsons traveled extensively six months out of each year, bringing home new recipe ideas to enhance the menu. These travels were described in their periodical booklet, “Tummy Travels”.

The Hudsons continued to purchase additional property around their restaurant, exhibiting environmental consciousness. Purchase of additional land also allowed for King’s hobby of raising show horses. The barn, stable, and ring were located in the vicinity where the Gift Shop now stands.

Evelyn retired from her restaurant business in 1962. The Hudsons leased the log cabin building to The Northwoods Inn. After 35 years at that location, The Northwoods Inn relocated.

Upon retirement, King intensified his tree planting efforts, while Evelyn became an activist in the community, dedicating her life to making Littleton the most beautiful city possible.

King Hudson died at age 90 in 1984. Evelyn set up a foundation in 1986 to ensure that her dream lived on. Before her death in 1988, she served as Foundation president and left general instructions to use her assets to “promote the cause of beautification and attendant ecological benefits”.

King and Evelyn Hudson
King and Evelyn Hudson in their garden
The Country Kitchen
The Country Kitchen