Holiday lighting a chance for Glenwood Springs to celebrate bridge completion |

Holiday lighting a chance for Glenwood Springs to celebrate bridge completion

Work continues on the underneath side and along the edges of the new Grand Avenue bridge. The bridge officially opened to traffic last week after a near three-month closure and detour period. Glenwood Springs plans to celebrate Nov. 24.
John Stroud | Post Independent

There’s extra reason to give thanks in Glenwood Springs this Thanksgiving, and even more reason to stick around for the holiday weekend to take in the local festivities.

In conjunction with the Hotel Colorado’s annual holiday lighting celebration the evening of Friday, Nov. 24, the city is planning a big Grand Avenue bridge opening party to celebrate the early opening of the new bridge 10 days ahead of schedule last week.

Besides the traditional hotel lighting, fireworks and holiday boutique, Roaring Fork Events and the city are gearing up to line the new downtown pedestrian bridge with its own set of lights.

Following the hotel and bridge lighting, from 6-9 p.m. there will also be an ice carving demonstration on the pedestrian bridge and a wine-tasting walk at several participating downtown businesses. Select locations will also have liquor, cider and non-alcoholic beverage tastings, plus bottle sales.

“Show your appreciation by doing your Black Friday shopping locally.”— Mayor Michael Gamba

“The city wanted to really celebrate the Grand Avenue bridge opening, so we have partnered some of our wonderful downtown businesses with a few of our favorite regional tasting partners,” Roaring Fork Events owners Emily and Damon Arredondo explain on their website.

Participating businesses include the Hotel Colorado, Providence Apothecary, Treadz, Book Train, Grand Avenue Sweets, A La Carte, Sugar Sweet Clothing Too, Chocolate Moose, Cooper Wine & Spirits, Bullock’s, Fourth Dimension, and Elizabeth Dean Boutique.

Several other shops in the area are expected to be open late as part of the festivities, as well.

It’s a great opportunity to support Glenwood Springs businesses that have suffered through the near-three-month-long bridge closure and detour that was finally lifted on Nov. 6, Glenwood Mayor Michael Gamba said.

“The Grand Avenue bridge construction and detour was a tough time for our city’s businesses,” he said in a city news release announcing the holiday lighting event. “Show your appreciation by doing your Black Friday shopping locally, and the following day is Small Business Saturday, which is another great chance to support the stores that make Glenwood Springs a great place to live in and visit.”

The detour period was a rough stretch for retail businesses and restaurants around Glenwood Springs. Collectively, the city saw a 7 percent decline in retail sales activity during August and was anticipating another 15 percent drop in September and October.

Several individual businesses have reported losses in the range of 30 to 40 percent during the detour.

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