Grand Mesa Arts & Event Center, Cedaredge

March 12, 2019

What do a mortuary, a hair salon & movie theatre all have in common?

If you are wondering what the answer is, we won’t keep you in suspense. It is the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center, where at one time or another it was home to one of those businesses. Born out of the desire to have more cultural offerings for the new and younger folks moving to the area, as well as, reviving the local economy, the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center opened its doors in June 2018, and has been booked solid with exciting events, enjoyable programs, and concerts big and small (all supported by Elevate's high-speed internet!).

Community Supported

Surface Creek residents have been eager to support the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center, and events have been well attended. Among some of these have been holiday events, dances, plays, art classes for kids, various lecture series including exploration into a plant-based diet, and sold-out concerts featuring the likes of Karla Bonoff, Severin Browne, Dana Cooper, Stray Grass, Spirit of the American Cowboy, David Starr, and John Oates. The center has even partnered with Delta County Libraries to bring the lecture series “Voices of the Western Slope” to the GMAEC.

A Spirit of Volunteerism

The breadth of support the community has shown the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center can probably be summed up with two factoids. Factoid One: they have one full-time employee, Executive Director, Deborah Shaffer. Factoid Two: they have over 200 volunteers. Volunteerism is at the heart of the GMAEC mission and area residents have been more than receptive to ensuring their community has access to arts, culture, and entertainment by volunteering their hearts, time, and talent. From manning events to donating, the Surface Creek community has shown their appreciation every step of the way. If you are considering contributing, the volunteer form can be found here.

Local Featured Artists

A new artist is rotated through the facility every 6-8 weeks with an art opening, which includes a wonderful artist reception complete with hors d’oevres and cocktails.

Since GMAEC’s focus is local, they strive to keep their talent local too, and have featured local artists including Rudl Mergelman from Gunnison, Arleta Pech- a painter from Eckert, Barb Torke – a painter of Cedaredge, and Daphna Russell – a sculptress from Cedaredge.  Featured artists are typically the folks teaching the art education courses that are so near and dear to the core values of the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center. In addition, local featured artists often host forums and speak of their artistic journey.

Coming Soon!

The GMAEC has an outdoor courtyard in the works. A perfect space for summer performances, event rentals, outdoor classes, and of course, extra seating for their bustling events.  

Additionally, the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center is holding its annual membership drive beginning March 30th. Membership supports operational costs and will be helping to raise money to purchase the building they are currently leasing. Member perks include access to special events, event rental discounts, 2 for 1 drinks, and free tickets to select events. If you would like to become a member, join here today!

Elevate’s Impact on The Grand Mesa Art Center

When Founding Board Members, Cindy Starr (President) and Deborah Shaffer (Executive Director), were asked how Elevate has impacted the way Grand Mesa Art & Event Center does business, they had a quick, clear answer. You know what the Grand Mesa Art Center handles a lot of? Art, that’s what, which requires continual exchanges of large files. Elevate high speed internet also helps them communicate with mailing list members. Having symmetrical upload and download speeds have been essential to them conducting the business of art and entertainment in the Cedaredge community.

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