On the weekend of June 16-17, local musician David Starr took the stage at the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center alongside performers Shelly Rae Korntved, Erik Stucky and Ben Harris. Those sold-out inaugural concerts marked the christening of the fledgling arts center and follow-on performances by an array of talented artists signaled the center's coming-of-age.
That initial opening weekend took place a mere seven months after organizers unveiled the concept to the public in a "sneak peek" event. Since then audiences have packed into the Bank of Colorado Theatre to enjoy summer concerts by Stray Grass, Dana Cooper with Bittersweet Highway, and Karla Bonoff with Nina Gerber. So far concert attendance is pushing a thousand and more music is in the offing as the center prepares to welcome Severin Browne and Laurie McClain (Sept. 11) and Gordy Pratt and Dalyce Sellers (Oct. 12).
In addition to hosting concerts, the center is humming with additional events: family gatherings, lectures, a poetry festival, on-going art exhibits, and a growing number of classes and workshops. So, in case anyone wondered if the place was going to fly, look to the skies.