By Caitlin Switzer
MONTROSE—(January 15, 2014) Only longtime locals recall the very first live show at the Montrose Pavilion, a 1990 concert featuring Montrose rockers The Stupid Band. However, just about everybody in town can remember attending a show, meeting or other gathering here—the facility can accommodate everything from weddings, assemblies and school band concerts, to dances, recitals and large scale trade shows and events. Ask Pavilion Manager Kara McKenna about the growing success of the popular events venue, and her enthusiasm is obvious.
“2014 is going to be the busiest year in our history,” McKenna said. “Our weekends are booked straight through until June—we have a strong year ahead of us.”
Credit repeat business and encouraging pricing for the Pavilion’s robust bookings.
“We are extremely affordable,” McKenna said. “There are no hidden fees, and local residents get a 35 percent discount.”
Because the Pavilion includes both the Montrose Senior Center as well as conference room and theater space, events can occur simultaneously. McKenna, now in her seventh year at the facility, said that there is no “typical” day.
“It just depends on the type of event,” she said. “Some days are quiet…but there are also days when we have multiple events taking place.”
According to the City of Montrose web site, the Montrose Pavilion offers 7,000 sf of meeting and ballroom space, 4,000 sf of gallery space, a 1,000 sf outdoor courtyard, 10,000 sf of outdoor commons space, a 602-seat auditorium, and full-service kitchen facilities. The Pavilion was designed by Montrose Architect Patrik Davis and is located at 1,800 Pavilion Drive, just one mile from Downtown Montrose and five miles south of the Montrose Regional Airport.
Exciting recent developments include the launch of a new web site, as well as a new path from the building to the Botanic Garden area, McKenna said.
“We are doing some painting, adding some things, sprucing some things up,” she said. “We are partnering with the office of Business & Tourism to add a Welcome Kiosk, and renovating a few of our rooms, like the dressing room backstage.”
Perhaps most exciting is the new variable message sign out front, although its activation has been slowed by the tragic death of One Track Communications’ President Jason Cook, who had been working on the sign’s wiring before losing his life in a place crash Nov. 29.
“We had scheduled a ribbon cutting, but it may not happen yet,” McKenna said. “We are still waiting on the final connection; hopefully another company can get it done for us soon. We have been working on this for more than a year so we are just biting at the bit!”
As one of just four staffers at the Pavilion, McKenna is justifiably proud of the facility’s current momentum.
“Our vision has always been to increase usage,” she said. “We would like to see a few more out-of-town events come in—we are trying to get our hotel rooms filled. We have been doing more collaborative events, and we have seen a large increase overall. There are week day dates open in 2014, but everything is going fast–every weekend in January is booked and double-booked.”
Out of town guests tend to be surprised at the quality of the Pavilion spaces, she said.
“We are so fortunate to have this facility in a community this size,” she said, “and we have some really great stuff happening now. For example, this summer we will welcome the Colorado Symphony—there is so much change and growth going on. I love it!”
To learn more about Pavilion events and rates, call McKenna at 970-252-4880.