By Crista Munro
Special to The PREVIEW
FolkWest has been awarded a matching grant of $8,500 from Colorado Creative Industries (CCI), a division of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.
This grant was awarded through CCI’s Colorado Creates Program and will support general operating expenses for the Four Corners Folk Festival, Pagosa Bluegrass Camps and the Pagosa Folk ‘N Bluegrass Festival for the 2012-2013 season.
State grants are awarded through a competitive process. This grant signifies that FolkWest provides a high-level of quality in its programs, community service and administrative ability. Next summer will mark FolkWest’s 18th season of bringing world-famous acoustic, folk, bluegrass, newgrass and Celtic performers to Reservoir Hill Park for its world-class music festivals. Through its camps and festivals, FolkWest attracts thousands of tourists to Pagosa Springs each year, resulting in hundreds of lodging night stays and tens of thousands of dollars spent in area shops, restaurants and activities.
An independent source (J. Porter & Associates) estimated in 2008 that just the Four Corners Folk Festival alone had attracted, “forty three hundred and forty six individuals representing twenty-eight states, the District of Columbia and the United Kingdom” to the event, resulting in an economic significance to the Town of Pagosa Springs and the State of Colorado of just over two million dollars. Since then, FolkWest’s programs have continued to grow and attract even more participants to the beautiful mountain community.
When notified of the award, Colorado state Sen. Ellen Roberts commented, “Colorado Creative Industries, a branch of Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade, capitalizes on the immense potential for our creative sector to drive economic growth in Colorado through its Colorado Creates grant program. Its competitive application process ensures that grants are awarded to the top performing organizations. I was pleased to hear that FolkWest has been awarded funding for the FY 2012-2013 grant cycle to continue its mission of creating cultural tourism in Pagosa Springs.”
FolkWest is the only Archuleta County organization to receive a Colorado Creates award for this grant cycle.