17th Annual Western Colorado Senior Games

FINAL Senior Games Logo

Grand Junction Parks and Recreation is hosting the 17th Annual Western Colorado Senior Games, August 21-27, 2017. This week long athletic competition is open to participants aged 50+ and has 57 events with a regional draw of more than 230 participants. Cornhole is the newly added event this year. The media is invited to any of the following events:

Senior Games Schedule of EventsFor more information or questions, please contact:
Lorie Gregor, Recreation Coordinator

Economic Impact of Nonprofit Arts and Culture Industry in the City of Grand Junction

The Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture has released their economic impact study of arts and culture in the City of Grand Junction, referred to as the Arts and Economic Prosperity 5. The Art Commission partnered with Americans for the Arts to document the economic impact of the nonprofit arts and culture industry in 341 communities and regions (113 cities, 115 counties, 81 multi-city or multi-county regions, 20 states, and 12 individual arts districts)—representing all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 provides evidence that the nonprofit arts and culture sector is a significant industry in the City of Grand Junction—one that generates $17.3 million in total economic activity. This spending—$11.3 million by nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and an additional $6 million in event-related spending by their audiences—supports 512 full-time equivalent jobs, generates $12.9 million in household income to local residents, and delivers $1.4 million in local and state government revenue. This economic impact study sends a strong signal that when we support the arts, we not only enhance our quality of life, but we also invest in the City of Grand Junction’s economic well-being.

To complete this study, The Art Commission gathered 1551 audience-intercept surveys from arts and cultural audience members attending a performance, event or exhibit within the City of Grand Junction during calendar year 2016. Nonresident attendees spent an average of 294 percent more per person than local attendees ($72.12 vs. $18.29) as a result of their attendance to cultural events. As would be expected from a traveler, higher spending was typically found in the categories of lodging, meals, and transportation. When a community attracts cultural tourists, it harnesses significant economic rewards.

Each of the nonresident survey respondents (i.e., those who live outside Mesa County) were asked about the purpose of their trip: 54.7 percent indicated that the primary purpose of their visit to the City of Grand Junction was “specifically to attend this arts/cultural event.” This finding demonstrates the power of the arts to attract visitors to the community.

Also contributing were 32 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in the City of Grand Junction, that provided detailed financial and event attendance information about their organization.

During 2015, a total of 1,980 volunteers donated a total of 99,417 hours to the City of Grand Junction’s participating nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. This represents a donation of time with an estimated aggregate value of $2,342,265.

Nonprofit arts and cultural organizations are businesses in their own right. They spent $11.3 million during fiscal year 2015 to employ people locally, purchase goods and services from local establishments, and attract tourists. They also leveraged a remarkable $6 million in additional spending by cultural audiences—spending that pumps vital revenue into restaurants, hotels, retail stores, parking garages, and other local businesses.

This study puts to rest a misconception that communities support arts and culture at the expense of local economic development. In fact, communities that support the arts and culture are investing in an industry that supports jobs, generates government revenue, and is the cornerstone of tourism. This Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study shows conclusively that the arts mean business in the City of Grand Junction!

To access the complete report, go to www.gjcity.org.

For more information regarding the Arts and Economic Prosperity 5 please contact:
Lorie Gregor, Recreation Coordinator

Canyon View Park Playground Scheduled to Close for Maintenance

Canyon View Park Playground is scheduled for a maintenance closure beginning July 9, 2017.

Due to heavy use of the Canyon View Park playground throughout the year, routine maintenance checks and warranty work closures are scheduled in order to upkeep the quality and safety of the playground for our patrons. During this closure, VitriTurf will be coming in to prepare the playground surface for two coats of sealer.

The closure is expected to take place through July 16, however if crews finish early, the playground will reopen once the sealer is cured. Parks crews are expected to be out at Canyon View Park playground early Sunday morning, July 9, to install temporary fencing around the equipment before VitriTurf arrives to complete the maintenance work.

Please visit www.gjparksandrec.org for a list of other City facilities that offer similar amenities which will be open to the public during this closure. For more information regarding this scheduled closure, please contact Parks Superintendent, Mike Vendegna.

Mike Vendegna

aRT Program Set to Expand in 2017

In October of 2016, The aRT coalition launched aRT (art on the Riverfront Trail). aRT is designed to transform bleak underpasses along the Riverfront Trail into vibrant, colorful artistic expressions that enhance the trail users experience. aRT is a fluid process with murals changing annually, bringing new and fresh designs to the Riverfront Trail.

The success with aRT has been three-fold. We have expanded our rich artistic community and provided spaces to nurture budding artists. We have cultivated a culture which respects artwork and appreciates its contribution to a vibrant environment, and we have substantially increased community use of the Riverfront Trail for art appreciation and recreation.

Grand Junction Police Chief John Camper states, “The murals seem to have been very effective in not only beautifying a difficult area, but in some cases, they seem to have even reduced the number of homeless camps and their associated trash and hazardous waste. We’ve seen no graffiti or tagging over any of the approved artwork. As an example of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED), this project has been highly successful.”

With the proven success of the first year of aRT, we are expanding to two more locations in 2017. Car Part aRT will be on the south side of the downtown parking garage. Murals will be painted in conjunction with the aRT murals on October 7 as part of the Downtown Art Festival.  Another program, aRT – Fruita, will be on the spur trails leading to the Colorado River State Park and the future western expansion of the Riverfront Trail. Murals will be painted as part of the Fruita Fall Festival on September 23.

More information on deadlines for this program and applications can be found at www.gjarts.org/cultural-happenings-news-events/art-programs/.

For more information regarding aRT, please contact:
Lorie Gregor, Recreation Coordinator

Stocker Stadium Undergoes Field Turf Renovation

Stocker Stadium at Lincoln Park is set to undergo a major field renovation which is anticipated to run from June 13th – August 1st.

With the existing turf reaching its life expectancy, it became apparent that the field needed to be replaced in order to maintain the safety of facility users. The City of Grand Junction has contracted with FieldTurf to complete the project, which entails installing a 2-layer synthetic turf system, including new goalposts. Crews will work from the North end of the Stadium to the South, and will begin with removing existing turf, the airfield drain system, and goalposts. After removal has been completed, the area will require regrading and will then be prepped for the new turf and goalpost installation.

The project was funded by a $200,000 Mesa County Federal Mineral Lease Grant, $200,000 from the Parks Improvement Advisory Board, as well as partner funding from Colorado Mesa University, School District 51, and the City of Grand Junction. “Without these partnerships from the community, this project would not be possible,” said Marc Mancuso. “We are lucky to have such support here in the Grand Valley.”

During construction, the Stocker Stadium track will be closed to the public to control safety and efficiency of the project. Alternate facilities available for use during this time include the Grand Junction High School Track, or the trail system in Lincoln Park.

We apologize for any inconvenience, but appreciate your cooperation. Facilities will open back up to the public on August 2nd.

For more information regarding this project, please contact:
Parks Supervisor, Marc Mancuso

Field Turf Project 2017

3rd Annual Free Take Part in Art Expo

take part in art logo

The public is invited to explore the different arts and cultural organizations in the Grand Valley at this free event on Saturday, June 17 from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm at the Lincoln Park Barn. This is your opportunity to learn what’s going on and how you can get involved. Various groups, associations, organizations, guilds, and clubs representing music, dance, theatre, art, crafts, wood working, reading, and creative writing will be doing demonstrations and handing out information. Kids activities include a musical petting zoo, watercolor markers, and chalk art out on the patio. Get your passport filled and qualify for some amazing prizes donated by attending organizations.

The performance schedule for June 17 is as follows:
9:30-10:00 am               Erth Studios – Musical Performance
10:10-10:40 am             Absolute Dance – Dance performances
10:50 -11:20 am            Writers Forum – Read Poetry & Prose
11:30-12:00 pm             Creative Avenues – Dance/Theatre

Take Part in Art Expo is designed as a networking opportunity. There will be no sales of merchandise. The event is sponsored by the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture.

For more information call Lorie Gregor at 254-3876, visit www.gjarts.org, or like us on Facebook.

Grand Junction Parks and Recreation Kicks Off “Round Up for Recreation” Scholarship Fund

Round Up for Recreation - Logo

The City of Grand Junction Parks and Recreation department has a scholarship fund to make fee-based recreation programs accessible to Grand Valley youth who reside in financially constrained households.

Parks and Recreation program scholarships have been available for over two decades thanks to the support from the community and the City of Grand Junction. These scholarships make participation possible in important recreation programs such as swimming lessons, summer camps, athletics, and other programs that provide life skills. However, in recent years the department has seen a large decline in grants and funds that have been used to support the program. “These declines have resulted in a 40% reduction in the number of youths served,” said Traci Wieland, Recreation Superintendent. “Your one-time, or on-going donation will help us make a difference in the life of a child, and keep the scholarship program intact for years to come.”

Donations to the City of Grand Junction Parks and Recreation Scholarships fund can be made by participating in the City’s utility “Round Up for Recreation” program which will be mailed out in all City of Grand Junction Utility bills during the month of June. You may either drop off or mail in your pledge enrollment form to 250 N. 5th Street. Forms may also be filled out online by visiting http://bit.ly/roundupforrec.

For more information regarding this program, please contact Emily Krause at emilyk@gjcity.org or 970-254-3875, or call the Parks and Recreation office at 970-254-3866.