There will be much fun to be had in Montrose this summer, everything from music to art shows to rodeos and Earth Week and the 4th of July.
If you are into art, Montrose Center for the Arts board president Jodine Broscovak had some interesting things to say. “This year, we’ve instituted an art program from Haven House and Partners,” two organizations that help underprivileged kids. Broscovak said that the Montrose School District Art Show recently got underway. About 300 people showed up for their reception.
Meanwhile, “The Colorado Mesa University art camp will be held at our facility next month,” Broscovak revealed. “And, in the fall, a student internship program is planned in collaboration with Montrose High School.”
You can find more about the Montrose Center for the Arts at https://mc4arts.net. The organization is completely comprised of volunteers, and is funded by memberships, donations, grants, and fundraisers.
On May 4, the Center held the grand opening of its brand new brick- and- mortar space at 11 S. Park Ave., Montrose, CO. Their mission is “to promote the excellence of all art forms in the City of Montrose.”
The Center will present a mystery dinner theater experience, “Murder in Buffalo Chip”, at the Montrose Pavilion on Sept. 28.
Also in September, “In coordination with that, we’re going to have a month-long western art exhibit,” Broscovak said. “In November, we’re going to bring jazz pianist Bob Milne back to Montrose, and he’ll be performing at the Methodist Church.”
Next up—Montrose County Fairgrounds coordinator Stoney Field. No surprise that Field announced the events for the upcoming 133rd Montrose County Fair and Rodeo, which will run from July 22 through July 27. “That’s a Monday through Saturday,” he said. “The previous weekend we’ll have the 4H horse show, as well as the dog show, in the Events Center.”
All of the 4H kids are getting their animals ready, and will bring them to the Fairgrounds on July 22. “They’re going to weigh them in and register them,” Field explained. “That evening, at 7 p.m., we’re going to have a parade downtown. If you have a float from your organization, feel free to contact me and we’ll set you up in the parade as well.”
The small animal shows will start the following Tuesday. “Those are going to be things like poultry and rabbits,” Field said. “ That evening will be our Community Night. That’s a pretty common event; we’ve had upwards of 1500 people show up for that. It includes free barbecue, and we’ll have a number of events going on in the arena.”
Sheep and goats will be featured on that Wednesday, followed by pigs and swine on Thursday. Beef will also be showcased on Thursday evening. The kids’ events will be over on Friday, but the Fairgrounds is negotiating for other possible events that day. “Saturday will be a super-packed day,” said Field. “We start out with 4 H livestock sale. Last year, we did over $370, 000.
“At the same time, we’re going to have the fiddle contest, and that is a super well-attended event. There’s normally more than 400 people there,” Field said enthusiastically. This will be the first time that the fiddle contest will be held in the Event Center, rather than in Friendship Hall; the idea behind the change is to provide better acoustics and seating.
“That evening is our CPRA event, which stands for the Colorado Professional Rodeo Association. That’s going to be our big rodeo. Last year, we had more than two thousand people in attendance.” Field proudly announced that “Last year was the second year that we were voted the Most Improved Rodeo in the CPRA,” as the crowd applauded. “Our fair’s rodeo committee has done a phenomenal job.” As a result, the Montrose Event Center will, for the first time, host the CPRA’s state championship competition in October.
City of Montrose Community Events Coordinator Alexis Foran spoke next. Her position is brand new. Foran explained how and why it came about. “The City of Montrose realized that there was a need for someone to foster and facilitate the community events that we currently have, such as Earth Week, the Fourth of July Parade, the FUNC Fest, the Parade of Lights. But not just those events; also to create new events, new experiences, and have fun doing so.”
The fun began with the Community Block Party that happened in front of the Montrose Visitors Center last Thursday, May 2. It included food trucks, kids’ stuff, street performers–a little something for everybody.
Something else began in Montrose on May 2–the first annual MoTown Showdown, which is the Montrose Yard of the Month Contest. It will continue for five months, ending on Sept. 30. Foran explained that “It’s Montrose’s way for rewarding you for all that hard work you put into your yard work, by giving you fifty dollars worth of Montrose bucks.” Your face and property will also be displayed in the Montrose Daily Press. And, you’ll receive a “Yard of the Month” sign to display in–where else–your yard. “Please keep an eye on the city’s website (https://www.cityofmontrose.org) and your utility bills to get more information about how you can enter,” she advised.
The City is also going to sponsor “Movies in the Park” this summer. There will be three family-friendly films show this summer at various local parks, at no charge. Again, you can receive details at the City of Montrose website.
On June 27, there will be an open house at the Montrose Police Department. There will be an obstacle course and a climbing wall for the kids.
As for our annual Fourth of July celebration, “It’s going to be a little different this year,” Foran explained. “It needed a face-lift. We’re going to move the parade into the evening, probably followed by a picnic in the park.” That will be Cerise Park, where there will be food and games, said Foran. “We’re going to have music, and there will be an apple pie eating contest.” This will all culminate in the annual fireworks display.
That leads us to the 5th Annual FUNC Fest—FUNC being short for Fun on the Uncompahgre. Foran said, “ It will be a two day event this year. The first evening is on Friday, August 9.” There will be a live band, food trucks, beer, and camping. The event is geared toward whitewater enthusiasts, and will happen at Riverbottom Park. The Whitewater Competition will happen on Saturday, August 10. The evening will end with the Paisley Park Prince Tribute Band.
And, there will be a family fun roller skating night at Riverbottom, at the skateboarding rink. There will be a DJ, and prizes, plus a roller skating dance. Of course, there will be food and tips from roller skating pros. Mark this one on your calendar for Friday, August 23, from 6 to 8 pm.
After Foran, Montrose Mayor Dave Bowen put on his other hat, as the founder and creator of the annual Montrose Summer Music Series. Concert season starts in Montrose on May 10. First on the roster—rhythm and blues singer Hazel Miller, from Denver, in a charity show for Volunteers of America. Also on the bill—Chris Daniels and the Kings.
Bowen also said there will be free music at Montrose’s pocket park on the second and fourth Tuesdays in June, July, and August. Local favorite “Gotta Be” will be among the bands. “We’ll have free hotdogs, sponsored by Cherry Creek Radio. Colorado Boy will sponsor the beer. It’s a very family-friendly event,” he said.
“I guess the thing I’m most proud of is the Montrose Music Series. We;re back!”, he stated. “It’s the first Friday of June, July, August, and September.” As always, these are free concerts, thanks to about $40,000 worth of donations, mostly from local small businesses.
The first set of the series will be played by a trio called Peachy, from Vanderbilt University, with a member who is a Montrose High School grad. His name is Jeremy Trujillo. “We send our kids to some of the finest universities in the world,” Bowen said enthusiastically. “And Jeremy is so excited about playing in front of his hometown crowd.” The show will be broadcast and streamed by KVNF radio, who will be opening their new Montrose studio in late May or early June, and they plan on holding a street dance on Cascade, according to Bowen.
On July 5, “We have Mason Lively, a young country artist,” Bowen said. “D&G Railroad”—Donnie Morales and Glen Patterson and friends, will be the warm-up band for that concert.
“August 2nd is going to be a big, big weekend for us,” Bowen smiled. “We’ll have a great band called Southern Avenue, out of Memphis, Tennessee, with the Brown Family warming up.
“Then, on Saturday, is the Olathe Sweet Corn Festival, which has moved to the Montrose Events Center.” Country singer Craig Campbell will be the headliner that night.
You can get more details about the Montrose Summer Music Series at https://www.montrosesummermusic.com/
These speakers informed the group at a recent meeting of The Forum (The Forum meets Wednesdays from 8 to 9 a.m. at CASA headquarters,147 North Townsend, Montrose, Colorado.).