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Entertainers infuse Breck with energy

Kimberly Nicoletti

BRECKENRIDGE – Breckenridge is infusing the streets with local flair this summer.

The Breckenridge Resort Chamber (BRC) and the town of Breckenridge will kick off its first year of street entertainment June 27.

Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon through Sept. 22, performers, athletic demonstrations and historical displays will fill the Blue River Plaza. On Thursdays, Main Street Station will feature entertainment such as the porch concert series and art shows. The entertainment will complement larger, weekend events such as the Breckenridge Music Festival, the Saturn Cycling Classic and the vintage car show.

“We’re really trying to stay away from that trite jugglers-and-clowns sort of thing,” said Tammy Baca, director of advertising and promotion at the BRC. “We want to give it a creative look and feel.”

“We’re bringing in things that represent the uniqueness of Breckenridge,” said Julie Foster, events assistant for the town. That uniqueness will include musicians from the National Repertory Orchestra and the Breckenridge Music Institute, actors from the Backstage Theatre performing excerpts from musicals, fly fishing and kayak demonstrations and demonstrations by local artists.

“It’s oriented toward activities appropriate to a mountain town,” Mayor Sam Mamula said.

“It’s a summer blend of culture, sport and family with local flair,” Baca said.

“The overall goal is to provide some sort of entertainment to enhance visitors’ experience,” said Carol Craig, town events coordinator.

The interactive and educational activities are designed to increase repeat business.

“It’s the difference between managing experience instead of marketing experience,” Baca said. “We’re trying to find a nice balance between both of them, because there’s value in both.”

The town plans to provide regular scheduled activities people can count on so it can use the entertainment as a marketing tool and a way to keep people in town, said Town Manager Tim Gagen. “The theory is, every weekend you come up here, there will be something to do.”

“The long-term goal is to bring energy to the whole town,” Foster said.

“Eventually the goal is to have strolling entertainment throughout town, similar to Pearl Street Mall (in Boulder),” Craig said. The town council is in the process of changing ordinances that currently do not accommodate street vendors or buskers. However, town officials still have concerns about such entertainment.

The BRC is leading the summer program with contributions from the town. The chamber will present a revised proposal to council on Tuesday, June 28, which decreases spending on marketing and increases spending on entertainment.

“They’re trying to do quality performances on a realistic budget,” Foster said.


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