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Just as the summer rains are upon us, we must be thinking ahead, and that brings us to the holiday season.
Pagosa is typically rich with visitors over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and we have people coming into town on the weekends in December when there is snow.
Of course, as we get closer to the Christmas holiday, we again experience a large influx of visitors.
There are various activities occurring around town throughout December, but the Chamber of Commerce and the Town Tourism Committee would like to promote a more active and unified community during this season. We would like to publish a monthly activity calendar to hand out to visitors and provide opportunities for our residents to enjoy.
For example, we would like to host a community lighting on Nov. 29, right after Thanksgiving, when people are here in town and there is lots of event interest. The Chamber of Commerce will host the Parade of Stores Dec. 5-7, and there will also be the Festival of Trees on Dec. 6, produced by the Ross Aragon Community Center.
Later in the month, there will be the second annual tree lighting on Reservoir Hill, and we understand that other sections of the community will be hosting some special shopping days or events, and there are individuals or businesses interested in producing some activities. We would like to put all these great ideas together and market them collectively. Wouldn’t it be great to highlight an event or series of events every weekend of the month in December?
We would like business input on some of the following ideas: The December Event Calendar Overview; a Downtown Lighting and a Westside Lighting; businesses staying open late; a lighting contest; Small Business Saturday and the Parade of Stores. These are just a few of the topics that will be discussed at a holiday business meeting planned for Tuesday, Aug. 27, the Quality Resort at 6 p.m. We would really like your input and ideas on how we can make this holiday season more vibrant and interactive for residents and businesses.
We will provide light snacks and beverages and hope we will see a lot of business owners participating for about an hour. If you cannot attend the meeting, but would like to make some suggestions or comments, contact me at the Chamber at 264-2360 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Plans for the Calypso ColorFest Weekend are in full swing and the Passport to Pagosa Wine & Food Festival tickets are now on sale. We are pleased to announce that all the tickets sold so far online have been sold to folks from out of town, so get ready for a busy weekend.
September will be a busy month and due to event conflicts in the past, this year’s ColorFest has been moved to the third weekend in September.
The weekend begins Thursday with wine pairing dinners around town. The participating restaurants take great pride in selecting delicious wines to complement their food. We will release the list of participating restaurants in the next few weeks.
Friday evening will be the festive Passport to Pagosa, with a Calypso theme this year. We’re ready for color (whether the shades of fall or bright beach tones) and have lots of fun event gifts planned for attendees. Of course, one of the highlights of the event is the participation of Pagosa’s restaurants as they show off a popular menu item, introduce a new creation and use this event for feedback from the crowd. There will be the annual awards, including the coveted “People’s Choice” award. We are also excited that there is at least one regional Colorado winery involved this year, as we aim for more Colorado participation. Many thanks to Richard Parry at Foxfire Farms in Ignacio for joining us this year. Tickets are available online at pagosaspringschamber.com or in person at the Chamber, for $40 per person.
On Saturday afternoon, the Bands, Brews, Etc. Blowout returns to Town Park with fantastic regional microbrews and Denver’s Bill McKay Band. Playing at music festivals around the country, the band covers the genres from bluegrass to Delta Blues and will keep the crowd rocking. There will also be additional musical entertainment throughout the day, food vendors, wine by the glass, children’s activities and, of course, all those great microbrews. Tickets for the event will be available at the gate for $5 for concert admission or $20 to participate in the microbrew tasting and concert.
The balloons are also back for a magical, colorful weekend of hot air. Spectators can observe the balloons from the downtown area on Saturday morning and from the west side of town on Sunday morning. Stick around town on Saturday to watch the target contest and treat yourself to breakfast at one of our restaurants.
New this year will be the 5K ColorFest Color Fun Run produced by Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program. This event will take place Saturday, Sept. 21, in the downtown area, with registration beginning at noon and the race at 1 p.m. Believe me, it’s not your typical 5K race. As a matter of fact, it’s not a race at all, thus we highlight the “color” and “fun” in Color Fun Run! Stay tuned for more colorful information.
It’s hard to believe that our leaves will be changing color soon, but ColorFest weekend is here for us to celebrate that change.
On Thursday, Aug. 22, the Foundation for Archuleta County Education (FACE) will hold an introduction event for the community. FACE has been working to obtain a 501(c)(3) for three years. Created at the request of the District Accountability Committee, FACE will host an introduction event for the community at the St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church parking lot from 5-8 p.m. The event is a FACE-off of bands. Along with some great local music, there will be free hot dogs, chips, sodas and popsicles. They encourage the community to come out and dance, eat, celebrate and vote for their favorite band. Enjoy a summer evening of music and food and find out more about the FACE organization.
Auction for the Animals
Benefitting our four-legged friends, the Humane Society of Pagosa Springs will host its annual gala evening, the Auction for the Animals. An evening featuring silent and live auction items, along with delicious food, beer and wine, is available for the ticket price of only $25 in advance or $30 the day of the event. Tickets for the auction can be purchased in advance at the Chamber or the Humane Society Thrift Store.
Let’s cha cha
The Mountain Chile Cha Cha will salsa its way back to Pagosa on Saturday, Aug. 24. The day begins with a children’s 1K fun run followed by the 5K, 10K and half marathon races. The races will begin and end in Town Park where the Patty Aragon Green Chile Classic will take place, beginning at 12:30 p.m. Enjoy tastings of green chile and Mexican beers, a margarita contest, live music, including Manzanares, and children’s activities all beginning at 10 a.m. It is another one of those fantastic days in the Park in Pagosa, with a free concert and delicious foods.
Preview in the Park
In years past, the community was treated to “Free Fridays,” compliments of FolkWest, in conjunction with one of their festivals: Folk ‘n Bluegrass or the Four Corners Folk Festival. While not on a Friday, the free concert in the park is back this year on Thursday, Aug. 29, with Preview in the Park.
Four Corners Festival performers Halden Wofford and the High Beams and New Country Rehab will perform at 5 and 6:30 p.m. respectively. Get out of work, grab the family and head to Town Park for an evening of free music. There will be several non-profit food vendors providing eats, a beer garden and, of course, there will be a preview of some of the music you will hear at the Four Corners Folk Festival. This is a no-rain event, so should there be rain, there will be no event. The Chamber is pleased to partner with FolkWest in producing this event for the community. We also thank Breckenridge Brewery for their participation as we welcome back the 2013 Four Corners Folk Festival over the Labor Day weekend.
Don’t forget that this month’s Business After Hours Event will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 28, at Mountain Landing Guest Suites and RV Park. Don’t miss out on seeing what fantastic additions they have made to the park. Known for their comfortable suites, this facility also has a great location and well-designed RV park. Come out and enter a chance to win a two-night stay for two in their executive suite, enjoy delicious food, take a tour of the property while enjoying wonderful weather, and meet some new business owners or an old acquaintance. Look for your e-vite in your e-mail box soon.
Welcome back to our renewals for this week: Choke Cherry Tree, Moe’s Maps, Pinewood Inn and San Juan Basin Area Agency on Aging.