HomeNews Mt. Crested Butte Performing Arts Center hits latest fundraising goal
Mt. Crested Butte Performing Arts Center hits latest fundraising goal
Written by Mark Reaman
Tuesday, 31 December 2013
$17 million in pledges takes MCBPAC to next step
The concept of a Mt. Crested Butte Performing Arts Center (MCBPAC) has hit its next step, completing a $3 million challenge grant fundraising effort before the end of 2013.
At a Sunday gathering of more than 100 supporters of the project at Mountaineer Square, MCBPAC co-president Tom Seymour announced to the crowd, “with certain approvals, the $6 million matching campaign has been completed. This is now more than a concept. With the $2.3 million in land donations, we have $17 million in commitments and we’re not done. As far as I’m concerned, as the saying goes, it’s time for more whiskey and fresh horses.” The “certain approvals” mentioned by Seymour is essentially formal board approval of moving to the next step. The board meets January 7. But Seymour indicated that the last $1.25 million needed to be raised between Thanksgiving and New Year’s to complete the $3 million match was tallied. “More than 160 people have made pledges for the project,” he said. “Now we can proceed to the next step, which includes more detailed architectural plans. We will have a 500-seat performing arts facility in Mt. Crested Butte.” Seymour thanked a litany of groups that helped the concept to this stage, including the ski resort and Mt. Crested Butte Town Council. The ultimate fundraising goal is closer to $23 million for the project to complete a top-of-the line performing arts center. But the MCBPAC board has said they can build a state-of-the-art facility if they hit the $17 million mark. It appears that mark has been reached through more than $8 million in private donations pledged, another $6 million in public funds to be generated through the Mt. Crested Butte Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and $2.3 million in land. MCBPAC executive director Woody Sherwood said that by completing this latest fundraising goal, the project can move to the next step. “We’ve been running for the last two years off of the original conceptual plans,” Sherwood explained. “What we’ll do now is begin the four or five steps needed to go from concept to the refocusing on building plans and real numbers and details. We can start that process right now. We’ll now begin to review how we’ll come at the construction phase.” Mt. Crested Butte town manager Joe Fitzpatrick said the DDA is exploring possible ways to fulfill its commitment to the Performing Arts Center project. It is looking at low-interest loans or the issuing of bonds. There is already some cash in the bank to go toward the MCBPAC. Ideally, the project will go from conceptual drawings to more firm plans pretty swiftly. With luck, building could possibly start in the summer of 2015 and a couple years later, the grand opening could be held in what it is now one of the resort’s parking lots. With Sunday’s announcement, it is looking more like a reality than just a dream that started back about five years ago.