New Colorado Archaeological Society chapter forms in Grand Junction |

New Colorado Archaeological Society chapter forms in Grand Junction

Brittany Markert
The Colorado Archaeological Society recently added a chapter in Grand Junction. They will meet monthly for presentations by local experts, plus they’ll take member-only field trips.
Submitted photo |


WHAT: Colorado Archaeological Society — Grand Junction chapter meeting

WHEN: Tuesday, May 19, 7-9 p.m.

WHERE: Grand Junction City Hall, Corner of Fifth Street and Rood Avenue

COST: Free

INFO:; 970-433-4312

Colorado’s Grand Valley is full of historical and archaeological sites; and a recent meeting hosted by Grand Junction’s new chapter of Colorado Archaeological Society proves there is a lot of local interest. More than 85 people attended the first meeting last month.

“I was totally blown away,” said Doug Van Etten, interim president of the local chapter. “We have needed it for a long time. … It’s adding to the cultural life in the valley.”

Van Etten moved to Grand Junction four years ago from Alaska, and he loves western Colorado’s red-rock landscape. After discovering there was not a local archaeological group in existence, he joined forces with Colorado Archaeological Society.

“It’s exciting there is such an intense interest,” said John Seebach, Colorado Mesa University’s sole archaeological professor. “There must be a serious hunger for this kind of knowledge and I’m glad to see it. It allows my students to get a deeper breadth of knowledge should they attend the lectures.”

He hopes his students can learn from this group. He also hopes to utilize group members for volunteer projects in the future.

“It could help keep my projects going longer,” he added.

According to Van Etten, Grand Junction’s chapter plans to host monthly meetings with presenters, along with monthly field trips throughout the region’s archaeological sites. Presentations and meetings are free and open to the public, but membership is required for field trips. A yearly membership costs $32 per person or $40 per household. Half the funds go toward the state chapter and half goes toward the local chapter.

“I think it’s great because it’s going to help educate the broader public, not only on shared love of archaeology, but also on the importance of protecting sites for future generations,” said Janice Shepherd of Grand Junction.

Shepherd has volunteered more than 400 hours with Bureau of Land Management’s archaeological department, and she loves anything related to archeology.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, May 19, from 7-9 p.m. at Grand Junction’s City Hall (corner of Fifth Street and Rood Avenue).

Dr. Carol Patterson will talk about “Rock Art of the Colorado Plateau; a cultural perspective.”

For more information, email or call 970-433-4312.

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