|Blues Community moving Paint the Town Blue concerts to Thorndale Park|
|Paint the Town Blue may have been forced out of Bancroft Park, but it's not leaving the Westside.
The Pikes Peak Blues Community (PPBC) reached an agreement with City Parks in early March to present its 10 free Paint the Town Blue shows this summer at Thorndale Park (on Uintah Street, between 23rd and 24th streets).
The weekly summer concerts, highlighting a different local band each time, are scheduled on the following Thursdays:
· June 15, 22 and 29. · July 6, 13, 20 and 27.
· Aug. 10 and 17.
“Paint” had been held for the past 11 years at Bancroft Park, but the Jan. 27 fire in the Bancroft bandshell prompted the Parks Department to tell event promoters using Bancroft that the bandshell would not be available this summer.
There is no bandshell at Thorndale. According to Marty Gordon of the PPBC, bands will play in the park's covered pavilion, facing north (away from Uintah), in the direction of a slightly uphill grassy area where people could set up portable chairs and/or dance.
“[It's] not ideal, but it will work,” he said.
Parks had not been charging PPBC a rental fee at Bancroft and will continue that policy at Thorndale. “Because you are unable to use the bandshell at Bancroft Park due to the fire, we are more than happy to transfer your grandfathered status of waived park fees to Thorndale Park,” reads an e-mail to PPBC from Michelle Bies, Parks special events coordinator.
Another option considered by the PPBC board was Acacia Park (downtown). However, Bies informed the non-profit organization that because it's a “Tier A” (high-use) park as defined under a city ordinance, the rental fee there could not be waived.
Gordon confirmed that this influenced the PPBC board's decision. Over the years, the group has lined up several private sponsors, but efforts are made to keep costs down. “It costs us $600 per show for band and sound,” he explained. “Acacia would cost us about $725 additional. When we pass the can during the break [during concerts], we rarely get more than $100.”
While located several blocks from Old Colorado City, Thorndale is similar to Bancroft in having no off-street parking, as well as being close to a residential neighborhood.
Asked what made the Thorndale pavilion preferable to the one at Bancroft, Gordon preferred to accentuate the positive side of the change. “We would prefer Bancroft, but it won't be available,” he said. “Thorndale will be fine, the board has agreed.”
Westside Pioneer article