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Aspen funds additional special events

Jeanne McGovernThe Aspen TimesAspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – Three local organizations have struck gold in the Mining Aspen for Ideas campaign, thanks to the Aspen City Council’s decision Monday night to dole out more than $20,000 for their special events.The Free Family Fun Fest in Aspen will receive $6,000; the American Junior Golf Association Golf Tournament is in line for $7,500; and the Challenge Aspen Vince Gill & Amy Grant Golf Classic will get $10,000.The money will come from the city’s economic stimulus fund, which comprises a total of $200,000 set aside from the 2010 general fund for “marketing/stimulus/special events.” Counting this latest allocation, some $166,000 has been earmarked for special events, including the Aspen Lacrosse Shootout, Aspen Fashion Week and Winterskl EPIC Winterfest, among others.The latest recipients were among a pool of nine organizations whose applications were reviewed by a committee of 10 local residents, including two City Council members. The events were recommended for funding by the committee, and the City Council on Monday approved that recommendation.NRC Broadcasting originally asked for $12,000 to host the Free Family Fun Fest in Aspen. The council approved half that request, and suggested the event be paired with another special event – such as the Aspen Cycling Festival or Taste of Aspen – to boast attendance and increase its appeal to locals and visitors.The two golf-related events were approved in part because the committee believed them to be a great way to showcase the city’s public golf course. Both were approved by the council on the condition that they continue to seek outside sponsorships and that they make a long-term commitment to keeping the tournaments at the Aspen Golf Course. The AJGA tournament is planned for June 7-10; the Challenge Aspen tournament is Aug. 2-3.Also during this latest round of economic stimulus allocations, the council asked its special events department to develop a concept for a Latino Festival. A proposed budget and plan for the event, which could include culture, film, music, art, dance, food, marketplace, exhibits, poster/photo contest, talent search, artist displays, speakers, etc., will be presented to council at a later work session.jmcgovern@aspentimes.com


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