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The Southwest Colorado Tourism Summit will take place April 24-26.
Although held in Durango, this summit will deal with tourism throughout the region and ways we can capitalize on this industry. This multi-day expo will highlight popular tourism segments such as Historic Preservation and Agritourism, Colorado tour operators and the Four Corners Film Office. Another important effort at the summit will be to try and build collaboration with other tourism sites throughout the state and to create itineraries for Colorado visitors, especially in southwest Colorado.
Attendees will be able to visit the new Visitor Center in downtown Durango, which houses the Durango Area Tourism Office, Fort Lewis College and Durango & Silverton Train satellite offices. There will be networking opportunities with other tourism-related businesses. Since everyone in Pagosa is in the tourism industry in some way, you should consider attending the summit at least one of the days.
The full conference day is Thursday, April 25, and there will be speakers from the State Tourism Office and the Southwest Colorado Travel Region, and industry experts will attend.
The goal of this conference is to increase tourism in our region, build partnerships and find ways to accomplish the goal. Industry experts will speak about cooperative marketing partnerships, how social media can contribute to marketing efforts, and international tourism.
You can register online at www.swtourismsummit.com. Rates start at $59 per person, with early bird and multiple person registration. Whether you operate an independent business, a tourism site, a lodging facility, or are just interested in the tourism arena, this would be an educational conference to attend. The networking and contacts made will be worth the price of admission. We hope to see a strong Pagosa contingent at this summit.
On Saturday, April 20, Pagosa Springs celebrates Earth Day with a variety of activities.
Music, food, a beer garden and activities will kick off the day at Town Park at noon. Involve the children and learn more about how you can implement “earth-saving” practices and waste prevention efforts. There will be food vendors and live music at the site throughout the day.
Another part of the event will be volunteer recruitment activities. People new to the community, people who have a passion about a particular aspect of the community, or families looking to get involved should attend this one-stop information event. Numerous non-profit agencies will be on hand or have printed information available to educate the public about the impact the organizations have in our community, as well as to discuss the organizations and how you can help out. Even a few hours of volunteer effort a month can be of great help. You can also find information about organizations that can help you with your needs. Perhaps you have a child who is interested in outdoor activities or getting a Big Brother or Big Sister, or perhaps you would like to be a Big Brother or Big Sister? Representatives of GECKO and Big Brothers Big Sisters will be at the event. Would you like to find out more about our Geothermal Community Project, what it involves and how you can interact? They will be there. Working with animals, housing, tourism, various emergency services and many more community activities and organizations will be represented. There will be information for adults and children, and you can learn how a whole family can get involved or obtain services.
The Earth Day/Volunteer Recruitment festivities will take place in Town Park from noon to 6 p.m. They are free to the public. In case of inclement weather, the festivities will be held at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds. Celebrate our Mother Earth, find out ways to improve our daily living, and get community oriented and involved all in one location.
If your business is going to be closed for the local spring break week or your hours will be modified during the spring season, please contact the Chamber of Commerce. We want to give locals and visitors correct information about our businesses. It is frustrating when people go to a business and there is no information posted, or we send them to a facility and the business is closed. Let’s work together to make sure we have the latest and most correct information about our business community. Please contact the Chamber at 264-2360 or jot us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if your hours will be modified in the next couple of weeks.
Dance at the Ross Aragon Community Center to the music of the High Rollers on Friday, April 5, from 7-11 p.m. Advance tickets are $15 and tickets at the door $20. Enjoy a night of great country music with one of the southwest region’s favorite country and western bands.
The 9Health Fair is at the Pagosa Springs High School Saturday, April 6, from 7 a.m. to noon. Blood tests, PSA tests and colon cancer screenings are available for a fee. Cash and checks only will be accepted. For more information, contact 731-4248.
A Bark Beetle and Watersheds Seminar will be held Tuesday, April 9, at the Ross Aragon Community Center from 6-7:30 p.m. Find out about property mitigation, watershed and forest preservation and the impact of the bark beetle here in the San Juan Forest area.
The Recycled Art Show, hosted by Habitat for Humanity, will be held Friday and Saturday, April 19-20, at 602 San Juan St. There is a gallery gala on Friday, April 19, from 6-9 p.m. Tickets are $20 and may be purchased at the Chamber or the Habitat for Humanity office downtown, above Citizens Bank. View and purchase works of art and enjoy hors d’oeuvres and beverages.
A Rural Philanthropy Days planning meeting will be held Monday, April 15, at the Pagosa Youth Center from 2-4 p.m. Representatives of community nonprofits, schools and government agencies are encouraged to attend. Rural Philanthropy Days will be held in 2014.
A call for entries has been issued for the SHY RABBIT “Print International 4” exhibit to be held from July 27 to Sept. 7. Juried entries must be submitted by June 1, 2013, and the exhibit open to any local, national or international artist 18 years of age or older. Visit www.shyrabbit.com/Calls.html for more information.
The Chamber of Commerce newsletter should be in your e-mail inbox this week. Don’t miss out on all the great information, reminders and business news and specials. Check out all the business special fliers located throughout the newsletter. If you would like to receive a hard copy of the newsletter, contact Jan Santopietro at 264-2360.
We welcome a new business to the Chamber this week. Jeff Hester is putting together an East Side Market for spring through fall seasons. The market will be located next to the San Juan Motel and will contain vendor spaces for crafts, goods and food. Spaces will be available for various lengths of time, to meet your selling needs and business availability. Electricity will also be available at some of the sites, along with many upgraded features for this vendor park. For more information on how you can sell your wares at this market, contact Jeff at 264-0002.
Our renewing members this week include Pagosa Brewing and Grill, Buckskin Towing and Repair, Pagosa Brokers with Briana Jacobson and LaWana DeWees, Team Murphy Realty, Colorado Dream Homes, Axis Health System, the Archuleta County Sheriff’s Department and GECKO. We also welcome back Directory Plus as a Chamber member serving southwest Colorado.
We hope that individuals, families and businesses have a wonderful, fun and safe spring break next week. Come back to Pagosa refreshed, relaxed and ready to tackle a busy summer business season.