RBC I Validating their claim: “Rio Blanco County Historical Society’s Heritage Culture Center Committee is committed to providing opportunities to bring our citizens and visitors into celebration of our heritage roots,” the group has lined up dozens of cultural-heritage activities and events for the summer.
Saturday opens the summer fun with “Capturing Our Culture” at the Old Timer’s Reunion. Capturing group conversations on video around history and memories from days gone by, the RBCHS is dedicated to archiving this oral history for future posterity. Opportunities to participate begin at 3 p.m. on Saturday at the Fairfield Community Center.
On Tuesday, a student from Colorado University who has been contracted with the University Technical Assistance program will reveal his design and plan for the Old West Heritage Culture Center’s renovation at the heritage center at 1 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend as we hear potential ideas on making the building fit in with the other 1880s structures in the museum complex and reach its full potential for all the activities planned in cultural heritage endeavors.
Coordinating with the Meeker Chamber of Commerce, the museum will be open until 6 p.m. each TGIF Friday with tours and specials on June 10, July 22, and Aug. 22. If it’s been a while since you browsed the pioneer and Ute collections, come by and take a peek.
First thing on Saturday morning June 11, from 8 a.m. to noon, the Heritage Culture Center Agritourism Committee is sponsoring the Meeker Farmer’s Market with at least a dozen vendors ready to sell fresh produce, meats, baked goods, gourmet treats, artisan products, fresh eggs, homegrown honey and more. Thereafter, the market will be available on July 23, Aug. 13 and Sept. 10 from 8 a.m. to noon in downtown Meeker between Fourth and Sixth streets along Main Street.
Also on June 11, join the Meeker Arts and Cultural Committee for the Annual Meekerpalooza at Ute Park along with the ERBM Recreation and District’s Metal Art Competition and their art and music festival which will again offer a Kids’ Art Zone from 1-4 p.m. The Heritage Center will provide historical characters from the past roaming the grounds introducing themselves and sharing their story.
Tuesdays June 14 and 28, from 10 to 11 a.m. at the heritage center, kids are invited to join the Kid’s Culture Club and be cool! This “culture” hour will include a character reading or telling a historical story from our own cultural heritage plus an art session taught by a budding artist in our community. This is appropriate for ages 4-12.
The Meeker Cattledog Trials provide the perfect venue for lots of history! There will be more historic characters at the historic chuck wagon. At this “culture” moment, one might get to meet the cowboy from Meeker who went to Hollywood—or perhaps Susan Wright, who came west from South Carolina by herself and started a hotel—or a mountain man who lived off the land and survived a cruel winter.
On June 18 from 5 to 7 p.m. will be Culture, Cowboys and Chuckwagon! This celebration of our cowboy heritage will commence with history on Cattle Drive Days in Rio Blanco County combined with some toe-tapping cowboy music and a delicious chuckwagon dinner with Dutch oven desserts, all for $12 per person.
For your entertainment, a spoof of TV reality show “Chopped” will take place with our own Chopped Cooking Competition—Cowboy style, involving three “chefs” facing a primitive open fire cooking challenge and three judges determining who gets chopped on each round. You won’t want to miss this cultural experience.
The proceeds from this event go toward the theater system for the Old West Heritage Culture Center, to further heritage education through history films and classic movies.
In conjunction with Range Call, there will be a tour to Milk Creek Battlefield Park at 1 p.m. on July 3, and the famous bank robbery re-enactment at 1 p.m. on the Fourth.
July also brings “History in Your Backyard,” a stimulating history camp for the entire family in partnership with the ERBM Recreation and Park District:
July 7: Home on the Range: Discover all it takes to run a ranch and feed the crew. We’ll be making biscuits right out of the flour sack!
July 14: Archeology Day: Be an archaeologist for a day! An on-site archeology dig and related rock art activities to make the day memorable
July 21: Do-Si-Do; Swing Your Partner: Experience the joy and art of square dancing and hear stories from pioneers who knew it well.
July 28: Agriculture Day: Learn old-time farming and agriculture, including a trip to the Upper Colorado Environmental Plant Center.
Sign up for one or all four days at the Recreation Center!
July 10 is RBCHS’ quarterly historic presentation, this one being “Celebrating Our Volunteer Fire Department Heritage” with a picnic potluck in the courtyard and presentation and stories in the heritage center.
On July 16, the Rural School Committee is hosting an Xtreme History Ride for the OHV participants who come to town, giving them a first-hand glimpse of some of our rural school history. At noon, the group will lunch at the historic Meeker Cafe and then we’ll provide a downtown walking tour for those interested.
July 23, in conjunction with Community Appreciation Day sponsored by ERBM Recreation District, the Heritage Culture Center will provide a living history demonstration.
Sept. 7-9 will wrap up the season with our Teddy Roosevelt historical character at the Meeker Classic to share his stories with the school children in the education tent.
At many of these activities, the RBCHS will be selling their delicious old fashioned root beer floats.