Dear Editor:

As a professional musician who over the past five years has actively served and supported numrous local arts organizations, I have come to observe something important that makes our little community so special. There is a passion among the people in Pagosa, a passion for volunteering, giving back, creating works of beauty, developing our town’s economy, and in general for making Pagosa Springs a truly wonderful place to live.

I have also come to believe that, other than the town’s most obvious asset of being located in a place of spectacular natural beauty, a perfect playground for those who love and enjoy the great outdoors, the arts are our town’s greatest treasure. I think many people appreciate that fact, but few have understood the rich and boundless potential that lies among us right before our eyes.

Recently, the Pagosa Arts and Culture Project presented a Makers Expo and Tour that emphasized the depth of that artistic richness. My question is, Why haven’t our town marketing gurus worked more diligently to capitalize on what is already a glorious part of our natural state of being? Why aren’t town developers doing all they can to advertise, encourage and enrich the arts in Pagosa?

It is time to dream big. It is time to make dreams reality.

I am all in favor of our town building a large outdoor amphitheater with lots and lots of seating, and hosting concerts of all types for the community and its many visitors to enjoy. I have a dream that someday an ambitious developer will be enticed to build a first-class artists’ retreat center, complete with a large auditorium where professional and aspiring musicians and artists can come from far and wide to rehearse, learn, create and perform.

Pagosa Springs is a desirable place for artists … we love it here! Why not represent art as a sparkling centerpiece of what is best about our town?

Sally Neel

This story was posted on December 5, 2013.