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Mural on Main proposal request deadline nears

Contractors who want to bid on the Mural on Main Pocket Park Project have just a few days left in which to hand in their bids to the Chamber.

All bids are due to the chamber by the close of business Monday, April 5.

The bid forms are available in hard copy at the Chamber and online at www.pagosaspringschamber.com, www.townofpagosasprings.com, and www.archuletacounty.org.

The Chamber of Commerce, along with the Pagosa Springs Arts Council, has spearheaded this replacement of the deteriorating mural currently located on Pagosa Street between The Rose Restaurant and the Galles Real Estate Building.

Partnerships with CenturyLink, on whose property the mural sits, the Ruby Sisson Library and the Town of Pagosa Springs has made this project possible.

The artwork for the mural is already complete and is being safely stored, just waiting for a home. The mural was created and completed by artists Jeffrey Haas and Hayley Goodman. However, without the help of all the partners, this project would not be possible.

Groundbreaking for the new project is expected to take place at the beginning of May, with a completion date by July 1. Along with a new mural, a small pocket park will be built, complete with new landscaping and benches for pedestrians. The mural will also be lit at night to highlight its beauty and position in the historic downtown area.

We are anxiously awaiting final approval from the Pepsi Corporation, where The Mural on Main Project was one of the first 1,000 entries to be accepted on March 1 for their “Pepsi Refresh Project” for April. The grant we are applying for is $50,000 and it will take the efforts of the whole community for us to be awarded this grant. We will let the community know once we have been notified of Pepsi’s decision and how each person can help ensure the success of this funding.

This mural project is the kickoff for many wonderful activities that will be occurring in Pagosa this summer.

New “wayfinding” or directional signage is planned at key locations in town. The rock work for the directional signage and the mural will have the same design. As the downtown area gets a facelift, we believe 2010 will see the resurgence of business in our community and the birth of new pride.

E-Cycle

In conjunction with Earth Day/Week events, the Chamber of Commerce and Archuleta County are joining forces to host an E-Cycle event.

On Friday and Saturday, April 16 -7, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the community can bring used electronic equipment to the Chamber to recycle. We have partnered with the City of Durango to take our electronic equipment and recycle it properly, just as they do during the Durango biannual e-cycle event.

Costs for electronic equipment are as follows: CPU, desktop printer, scanner, DVD player, VCR, regular fax machine — $5 each; monitor, laptop, and TVs up to 27 inches — $15 each; TVs over 27 inches — $25; large office equipment (copier, all-in-one, plotter, etc.) — 25 cents per pound; keyboard, mouse, cables, power cords, etc. — no charge; other electronics (cell phone, CD player, iPod, Gameboy, etc.) — no charge; Inkjet cartridge, laptop battery or cell phone battery — no charge. For large volumes, you will need to call Jennifer at the county at 264-5660, Ext. 21, to arrange for transfer, charges and delivery of an itemized inventory.

The last E-cycle day was two years ago, and we are very excited to partner with the county to make sure this type of recycling can happen again in our community. Questions can be directed to the Chamber at 264-2360.

Operation Cinderella

Calling all fancy dresses or evening wear.

Ladies: Take your evening attire to the Victim’s Assistance Office on the north side of Town Hall for Operation Cinderella. Pagosa’s young women will be able to “shop for free” on Wednesday, April 7, from 4-7 p.m. at the Pagosa Youth Center in preparation for the 2010 high school prom.

The purpose of Operation Cinderella is not only to give our young girls the opportunity to select a prom dress, free of charge, but also to raise awareness of the many forms of sexual assault, often occurring in dating situations.

If you have gowns, formal dresses, “sparkly” attire or accessories, please bring them to the Victim’s Assistance office or the Chamber by Monday, April 5. We’ll make sure it finds its way to Operation Cinderella.

Repertory theatre

Square Top Repertory Theatre is back in 2010 with an original new play by southern writer Damon Falke. Square Top will take “The Sun is in the West” on the road, but it will be performed in Pagosa on Saturday, April 10, at the Liberty Theatre. The group will also perform in Durango the night before, at Fort Lewis College, then, in May, the actors will travel to Santa Fe, N.M.

The play’s action is situated in a graveyard on the storm-ravaged Gulf Coast of Texas where the characters grapple with their connection to the land, with family myths, and with their own histories. It combines storytelling, live roots music and modern theater performance. For tickets, go online to www.squaretoptheatre.com.

United Way March Madness

Come to Pagosa Brewing Co. tonight, March 25, for a little bit of March Madness. For $50, you can reserve a VIP table, enjoy appetizers for the entire event, and enter to win some prizes for the Best Fan Fanatic Contest, the Nerf Free Throw Contest, and other adult and children’s contests. You can reserve your table by calling the United Way office at 731-0484 or Pagosa Brewing Co. at 731-BREW. This event is sponsored by La Plata Electric.

Business update

Following what is possibly the shortest board tenure in the organization’s history, the Chamber board of directors announces the appointment of a new board member. We are disappointed to announce the resignation of Thaddeus Cano as he moves out of our community. Thaddeus’ three-year term was immediately filled by Bill Schwab, owner of Piedra Automotive.

The vacancy leaves a seven-month position open on the Chamber board. The board of directors is now tasked with appointing a Chamber member to fill this position. Per Chamber bylaws, this appointment does not have to be from the slate of previously-nominated candidates, but can be from the general membership or even a former board member.

Thaddeus’ interaction with the Chamber board in his short tenure was a positive experience with insight and commitment. His work on the board will be missed. From a business standpoint, his efforts at Ski & Bow Rack will also be missed as he is extremely knowledgeable about the area and all the outdoor activities that Pagosa has to offer. His new business endeavor is lucky to have his energy, enthusiasm and knowledge. Good luck, Thaddeus.

Membership news

We have a new member to welcome aboard this week: the Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program. With an office located in the Town Hall complex with Human Services, ACVAP provides 24-hour assistance to those with emergency needs: crisis intervention, transportation, advocacy (including court) counseling, information and referral. There are also support groups for women, teens and children, and professional trainers offer violence prevention education programs for youth and specialized targeted audiences. Enjoy one of ACVAP’s fund-raising events, including the Duathlon, Walk a Mile in Their Shoes, and now Operation Cinderella. All ACVAP services are free and confidential, in English and Spanish. For more information about this advocacy program, contact Carmen Hubbs at 264-9075.

Some of Pagosa’s largest employers renew this week: Archuleta County and Archuleta School District 50 Joint. Southwest Mental Health also renews, as does The Fred Harman Art Museum; HTI Builders with Torry Hessman; the V.A. Poma Ranch; Riverdance Condo with Beth Gillich; Alpine Portable Toilets; The Kraftin’ Post; Treetops of Pagosa with Will Neder; Maria Kolpin and her business, Capturing God’s Creations; Restoration Fellowship; and St. Francis Sanctuary.

We hope Pagosans enjoy their spring breaks and get lots of rest in preparation for a very busy summer. In the next couple of weeks I will start writing about some great activities the Chamber has planned, including a Hospitality Day with some fabulous guest speakers based out of Albuquerque; a Microsoft 7 educational rollout; and the April Business Bites focusing on Small Business Loans, which will be sponsored by Wells Fargo. Restaurants need to start planning what they will be doing for our two big bicycle tours in June. Lots of planning and prepping to do for the summer — so enjoy your break!