The new Grand Mesa Arts and Events Center (GMAEC) will host a sneak peek of its future plans this Friday. The public is invited to the event Friday, Nov. 17, at the Cedaredge Civic Center, 140 NW 2nd Street. The program begins at 6 p.m. followed by a question-and-answer forum at 7 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.
The center's Facebook page indicates that GMAEC was recently formed to present "concerts, artist exhibits, children's classes, dance, senior and veterans outreach, receptions and much more." All this will take place at the center's new home in downtown Cedaredge where the large building at 195 West Main Street is currently being renovated. The 501(3)c nonprofit group is leasing the building with an option to purchase. Remodeling is being funded by private donations and GMAEC is seeking additional funding sources including grants to help with renovation of the historic building.
According to an online real estate listing, the building which will be the center's future home is about 4,000 square feet on 1/3 acre. The solid brick structure was built in 1904 and updated in 1998 and 2005 and it still has the original tin-stamped ceiling.
Renovation work began on Nov. 2 with an eye toward paying homage to the history of the building which began life over 100 years ago as a community bank. The old Cedaredge Bank and Trust vault will remain on the premises and GMAEC board vice president David Starr confirmed that the tin-stamped ceiling will stay. Starr noted that the structure once housed a movie theater. "It's exciting to know it will once again be a place where folks go for culture, entertainment and learning," he said. Photos of the renovation and regular progress reports can be viewed at facebook.com/grandmesaartscenter.
The center will need community support to achieve its ambitious mission which a GMAEC flyer describes as "enhancing the quality of life and inspiring our communities through visual and performing arts, education and advocacy." According to Starr, the center will continue reaching out the community members, groups, and foundations "for grants and other forms of funding." Tax-deductible donations for the center are being accepted at Starr's Guitars in Cedaredge at 250 West Main Street and at Cedaredge Land Company, 160 West Main Street.