'Change for Colorado' Focuses on Local Arts
Autumn Daily & Linda Echterhoff | 7/24/09
Change for Pagosa is not a well-known project in Pagosa Springs ... yet.

But the public will soon be seeing the civic and cultural impacts of this new community initiative.

Change for Pagosa arose from the vision of several local visual artists, including Sabine Baeckmann-Elge, who saw the need for aesthetic change in the Pagosa Springs Downtown Historic Business District; to create a new mural along the 400 block of San Juan Street. Not long thereafter Mary Jo Coulehan, Chamber Director, and Autumn Daily, Chamber Events Coordinator, acted to form the project development team that would create the vision, develop the plan and implement the ‘Mural on Main Project’, the first of many projects to change the way Pagosa feels and is received through its visual arts, music, and dance.  Continued...
mural painting
Artists Hayley Goodman and Jeffry Haas work on the new 28-foot mural for a future downtown "pocket park."  The park construction phase is still looking for sponsors and funding.
We want to bring a new level of rebirth into our community through the many talents of our local artists. We want to create a tipping point in Pagosa Springs that will positively bring local talent into the streets of our community.
 
The ‘Mural on Main Project’ will create a new green-design public pocket park along the 400 block of Pagosa Street between the Rannt Group, LLC property (jointly owned by Ray and JoAnn Laird and Tim and Cindy Plate) located at 414 Pagosa Street and The Rose Restaurant located at 408 Pagosa Street in Pagosa Springs’ Downtown Historic Business District. The ‘Mural on Main Project’ will replace the existing, deteriorated mural and wall structure at the same location.
 
The park will showcase a new mural artwork currently being created by multi-talented professional visual artist Jeffry Haas and visual artist Hayley Goodman, a junior studying art education at Colorado State University, in collaboration with emerging youth artists and recent Pagosa Springs High School graduates, Jacob Faber, Rachel E. Jensen and Betsy Schur. For their participation in the ‘Mural on Main Project’, each of the three High School graduates will be eligible to receive a scholarship award of up to $500; the award amounts will depend on the students’ respective project participation. The mural and accompanying scholarships are being funded through the generous donations of David J. and Carol Brown and Lal and Linda Echterhoff. On behalf of the project development team, we sincerely thank the Browns and the Echterhoffs for their significant donations totaling $6,200 plus interest, which allowed us to initiate work on the mural in mid-May.
 
The Haas-Goodman mural, featuring the Chimney Rock Archaeological Area and imagery of wild running horses, embodies the free, pioneering spirit of the Southwest with a unique futuristic perspective and freshness. The project development team graciously thanks horse owner Matt Poma for his generosity in facilitating Jeffry Haas’ photography shoot for this mural design.

The design is dynamic, encompassing the historic and aesthetic beauty of the Pagosa Springs area in an approachable manner. The mural portion of the ‘Mural on Main Project’ just achieved its second milestone; the project development team gave their approval of the full-scale detail design and mural painting has commenced.

What a fantastic addition this mural will be to Pagosa Springs!
 
The ‘Mural on Main Project’ is being accomplished through a multi-governmental, multi-cultural and multi-generational approach, involving the in-kind partnership of the Town of Pagosa Springs, Pagosa Springs Historic Preservation Board, Pagosa Springs Area Chamber of Commerce, Pagosa Springs Arts Council, Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library of the Upper San Juan Library District, CenturyTel, adjacent property owner, Mrs. JoAnn Laird, Mr. Dale Smith of Fänas Architecture P.C., and various local professional artists. CenturyTel’s very generous donation of the property, U.S. Hwy. 160 frontage, for use by this project is most appreciated by the project development team and will facilitate the project’s implementation.
 
The planned ‘Mural on Main Project’ pocket park will; 1) provide a strategic arts, cultural and education-based venue for the relaxation, contemplation and enjoyment of visitors and residents of the Downtown Historic Business District; 2) represent the second public open space to be created within the Downtown Historic Business District and the first to be developed within the 400 block of Pagosa Street; 3) enhance the recent and all future historic preservation improvements of the Pagosa Springs area; and 4) increase the economic vitality of the community’s commercial core by encouraging walking traffic in the area.
 
The ‘Mural on Main Project’ pocket park, consistent with the goals and guidelines of the Town’s adopted Comprehensive Plan, Downtown Master Plan and Historic Business District Guidelines, will employ local natural materials and other elements to project the rich, diverse cultural history and magnificent natural aesthetic beauty of the Pagosa Springs area.
 
   

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