By the end of the summer, it’s very likely you’ll know all kinds of interesting facts about your town’s cultural and historical history through interpretive signs that are being placed throughout municipalities in Garfield County.
The Northwest Colorado Cultural Heritage Tourism Project was started in 2005 with the goal to promote awareness of each community’s cultural, historic and natural resources.
The initiative now includes a project in which each participating community will have a large strategically placed sign that can be seen and read by residents and visitors.
“We’re working with Garfield County and all the communities in Garfield County to put together signs of historic and current information about each community,” said Nancy Kramer, project coordinator for NCCH. “Garfield County has supported the program since 2010. They value it as it relates to economic development.”
Four other northwest Colorado counties, Routt, Jackson, Moffat and Rio Blanco, are also participants in the program.
The first two phases of the sign project included putting together fliers about each town. Phase three, under way now, is the creation of the paneled signs. Kramer is visiting each municipality to invite them to join and contribute some funds for a sign in their town.
“Garfield County is kicking in 50 percent of the $9,000 total cost for each sign,” Kramer said. “The municipality must come up with the other $4,500.”
Kramer visited New Castle on Monday night to make her presentation and was met with a positive reaction from the town.
“It’s all about economic development. This is a way for visitors to be aware of what our community is about,” said Town Administrator Tom Baker. “Council has agreed to kick in the $4,500, now they have to decide where they want to put it. Staff will make some recommendations.”
Suggestions so far include a park downtown or between town hall and the library.
Wherever it’s located, the 35-square-foot post-and-beam sign should be up by the end of the summer, Baker said.
Kramer says she will be making presentations next week to Silt, Glenwood Springs and Carbondale. Parachute/Battlement Mesa has already raised its money, and Carbondale is working on it.
“This is a wonderful asset to each of these communities,” she said. “It introduces visitors, tells the story, the history and the legacy of each town and identifies the iconic heritage and cultural sights.”
“We’re working with Garfield County and all the communities in Garfield County to put together signs of historic and current information about each community. Garfield County has supported the program since 2010. They value it as it relates to economic development.”
project coordinator for NCCH