Following a reorganization in late 2014 and after struggling with both staffing and funding issues, the Board of Directors of Beet Street has decided to cease efforts to produce the 2015 season of Streetmosphere.
This would have been the fifth consecutive summer of Beet Street's signature cultural program which transforms Downtown Fort Collins into a spontaneous, outdoor performing arts festival over an eight week period. With commitments from 47 acts (200 individuals), in-kind partnerships, and numerous special engagements, this season was shaping up to be filled with an exciting selection of our home-grown artistic talent. Regrettably, the volunteer efforts of the Board were unable to secure the funds necessary to fully support our creative talent in the way they deserve.
During the past four years, Streetmosphere has provided high quality, free performances that have employed hundreds of talented individuals, engaged dozens of local businesses and organizations who made financial contributions to support the events and helped to boost civic pride for our local, creative community. It is with a heavy heart that we recognize the 2015 season will be a summer without the presence of jugglers, magicians, dance troupes, brass quartets, balloon artists, opera singers, and painters in downtown Fort Collins.
We look forward to future opportunities with our civic partners and the very talented Northern Colorado community. By suspending Streetmosphere this summer, we are giving ourselves the time needed to put us on a stronger footing in the future.
We would like to thank the artists and performers for their time and dedication to the program and the sponsors who had donated to the 2015 Streetmosphere Season.
There are big changes happening at Beet Street. You can read about some of these changes in the recent Coloradoan articles that can be found with the following links:
Here are some additional details not found in the articles:
In 2010, Beet Street embarked on the creation of the Arts Incubator of the Rockies (AIR) to serve as a professional development program. Local artists and creatives wanted help to improve their business skills and increase their sales and enhance their career goals. But Fort Collins wasn't the only community that wanted these tools, programs and learning opportunities. In fact, we found that from New Mexico to the Canadian border, there were 10 states and 280,000 professional creatives who were making great art, but had no professional development programs specifically designed for them.
We realized that Beet Street could take a leadership role and use the economy of scale and distance learning to develop affordable curriculum and programs that could be used by the Intermountain West communities too.
Literally hundreds of local and regional creatives, business people, educators and leaders have helped design and develop curriculum that is actually beginning to shift the way communities value arts and creativity. All of this work and national attention has put Fort Collins on the map as a great arts community - achieving the original vision of Beet Street!
After months of deliberation, Beet Street has decided the time has come for Beet Street to spin AIR off as its own organization - to allow it to flourish and serve its separate and distinct mission and a larger geographic area. This change allows Beet Street to remain focused on our local arts and creative community and to continue to serve Fort Collins.
Beginning August 1, 2014, AIR will become its own separate nonprofit and move to a new location. One of the hardest parts of this transition is that Kari Munson and Beth Flowers will be leaving Beet Street to staff the AIR program.
Beet Street has started to convene interested community members to develop next steps for the organization. With that input and advice we will start writing a new chapter for the arts community in Fort Collins. Beet Street will be recruiting new board members, listening to what our community wants and needs from an arts service organization moving forward, establishing a strategic plan and hiring new staff. Beet Street will remain in the Carnegie Building through August and new office space options are in process.
The prospects for both organizations are exciting, but we know that change is hard. We have great aspirations for both organizations in successfully fulfilling their respective missions.
We want to celebrate this moment and come together to create the future for our community. Please join us on Wednesday, July 23 at the Carnegie Community Creative Center, 5-8pm for a celebration of Beet Street's successes and to launch the new visions for both Beet Street and AIR.
Thank you, as always, for your generosity and support of Beet Street, Streetmosphere, the Arts Incubator of the Rockies, and the Fort Collins arts community. We hope to see you soon and look forward to doing great things together!
Beth, Kari, and the Beet Street and AIR Boards of Directors