Week in Summit: According to recent surveys, Breckenridge is both artsy and trashy
Towns are many things to many people, which might explain Breckenridge being ranked last week in separate national surveys as both trashy and artsy.
First, the trash. It’s well known that great minds think alike. Which is why, every year, young scholars seeking respite from the rigors of their studies converge on spring break hot spots like Lake Havasu, South Padre and Panama City Beach. As a result, those places are widely recognized as beacons of, well, academic tourism.
Now Breckenridge has a place on that list of citadels. The town was named one of “America’s Top 20 Trashiest Spring Break Destinations,” by COED.com no less. Seems the availability of marijuana — long known for eliciting remarkably heavy insights — was the factor that got Breck on the list.
“Trashy” actually means popular and happening, the surveyors said. Just what the town needs: scholars who want to be popular and happening. Except to see your favorite hangout overrun by know-it-alls droning on about boring stuff like dark matter and boasting about their Rubik’s Cube prowess.
Let’s just hope they stay away from Main Street and the town core, you know, because of the family environment.
FORTUNATELY, BRECK IS ALSO ARTSY
As if it sensed the town’s pain, the National Center for Arts Research named Breckenridge the nation’s No. 4 small to medium city in its Arts Vibrancy Index. The researchers looked at metropolitan statistical areas, so to be clear “Breckenridge” means all of Summit County. “Glenwood Springs,” including all of Garfield and Pitkin counties, was No. 1 in the small to medium category.
The researchers looked at three criteria: supply, demand and level of government support for the arts per capita. Supply reflects the community’s total number of artists; arts, culture and entertainment employees (agents, promoters, managers, etc.); and arts organizations. Demand is based on total nonprofit arts dollars in the community, and government support is assessed based on state and federal arts funding.
“Steeped in culture and heritage, Breckenridge, CO, is filled with creative and inquisitive people enjoying a vibrant lifestyle amidst stunning scenery,” the researchers said. It “provides a distinctive mix of arts and cultural activities for people of all ages and interests” — including trashy spring breakers.
The Summit State bus system got some air in its financial tires last week with a FASTER Transit Grant from CDOT.
The county’s free public transportation service, which many locals rely on daily, received $1.6 million. The bulk of the funds will help pay the cost of replacing two aging buses with new ones and refurbishing five others.
A portion of the funds will help pay for upgrades to system facilities, including the busy Frisco Transfer Center, which will get new lighting and upgrades to the transit lobby, restrooms and car rental offices. Stage services also will separated more from those of airport shuttles, Greyhound buses, car rental companies and the future Bustang Interregional Express buses.
“That facility was built in the 1990s, and we’ve outgrown it,” Jim Andrew, county transit director, said. “Right now, it can get pretty congested and a bit confusing to the public, so we’d like to make it easier for people.”
Whole Foods Market announced that its Feed4More campaign took in more than $20,000 during the month of December. Customers could help fight hunger in the community by donating to the program at the checkout stand. The donations will benefit the Summit Family & Intercultural Resource Center, providing pantry staples that are free of artificial colors, flavors, high fructose corn syrup, preservatives and hydrogenated fats.
Besides the Feed4More campaign, the Frisco Whole Foods holds Community Giving Days on which 5 percent of the store’s sales for the day go to a designated beneficiary. The next one is Tuesday, March 31, when the beneficiary is the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center.
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