COMMUNITY BRIEFS | Telluride Venture Accelerator Start-up Program
Oct 04, 2012 | 1444 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print

TELLURIDE – The Telluride region has a rich history of innovation, invention and reinvention.

Now the Telluride Venture Accelerator, partnering with the Telluride Foundation, seeks to usher in a new period of innovation and reinvention by helping Telluride to create new jobs and start-up businesses locally.

TVA’s goal is to launch and grow new high-growth businesses out of Telluride, by hosting a business competition for applicants working to develop businesses targeting a national market.

TVA and the Telluride Foundation invite the public to an informational meeting on Thursday, October 4, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., in the upstairs meeting room at the Telluride Fire District, 131 W. Columbia Ave.

“TVA seeks to be a catalyst for the sustainable growth and diversification of the Telluride regional economy,” said Jesse Johnson, TVA director and Telluride Foundation boardmember. “TVA will invest in innovative enterprises with the aim of building and strengthening the entrepreneurial community in the Telluride area. It will start small but, if successful, TVA has the potential to create a self-sustaining entrepreneurial ecosystem bringing innovation, jobs, ideas and a renewed dynamism to the region.”

To that end, TVA plans to host an annual competition for entrepreneurs with high-growth business ideas, selecting three finalists to receive $30,000 each, to catalyze their business forward, and relocate to Telluride for at least six months (where they will be provided with shared office space and mentors to cultivate and support their business endeavors).

Playing to Telluride’s unique strengths as the first known accelerator in the U.S. to focus on businesses in outdoors, lifestyle and recreation; natural, organic products, food and beverages and health and healthy living and tourism, TVA will also consider impact investing in fields of energy, water, education and food.

For more information on TVA, attend the public meeting on October 4 and/or go to

Crowdfunding Talk at Wilkinson Library Oct. 12

TELLURIDE – Need money for a start-up business? Come to the EcoAction Roundtable on Oct. 12, at 8:30 a.m., at Wilkinson Library to hear Silverton resident Anthony Edwards, founder of Crowdfund Offerings, Ltd., discuss this new fundraising frontier.

Crowdfunding describes the collective effort of individuals who network and pool their resources, generally through Internet platforms, to support efforts initiated by other people or organizations. Crowdfunding can also refer to the funding of a company by selling small amounts of equity to many investors.

Edwards will discuss the different forms of Crowdfunding currently being utilized for both social change and in commercial endeavors, survey current environmentally centered fundraising platforms and successful projects and explain the status of the Crowdfund Act of 2012 and how Crowdfunding, as a tool for entrepreneurs, is primed to change the way Americans invest in their community.

Light refreshments provided; please RSVP for this free event by Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 3 p.m. to 970/728-5208 or Visit for information.

Wright Opera House Goes High Tech

OURAY – The Wright Opera House is going high tech.  “We need reach our supporters and audiences in the ways they are most likely to gather information, and we want to use the latest technology in delivery of programming, and we want to maximize our efficiencies," states Dee Williams, Chair of the Friends of the Wright Opera House.

Information about the events and progress on restoring the historic building can be viewed at

Tickets will be sold online on the website and via smart phones (by scanning the black and white code on posters and in print ads), whose users can download the necessary app. Tickets can also be bought at the Opera House box office or by telephone (325-4399 or 316-0028).

The Wright Opera House has a Facebook page, and is developing an email list as well. Send email comments and questions should be addressed to

The Wright is now presenting movies in HD, delivered over the internet, with  “Almost Every Wednesday,” screened Wednesdays at 7 p.m., featuring first run films from independent producers.  (In November, it will switch to “Almost Every Friday” at 7:30 p.m.)

“This is an exciting time as we merge the latest technology into the operation of this historic opera house!  The community is benefitting from generous donors who are helping to capitalize on the best of the old and the new to serve residents and visitors in a way that is appropriate in the 21st century,” said Williams.

Open House at Forest Headquarters Oct. 9

DELTA – The Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests host an Open House at the Forest Headquarters in Delta on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 3-6 p.m., to meet with GMUG Forest Supervisor Scott Armentrout, who began his tenure as Forest Supervisor for the GMUG on September 10.

The Forest Headquarters are in Delta, at 2250 Highway 50.

Helpful Tips From the League of Women Voters (Registration Deadline Oct. 9)

MONTROSE/DELTA COUNTIES – League of Women Voters of Montrose and Delta Counties President Karen Connor urges voters in Montrose and Delta to prepare for the upcoming general election by visiting  to find their polling place, check voting hours, learn about the candidates and ballot measures, and read tips about voting in Colorado. provides simple, helpful tools to help voters navigate the voting process and Election Day. is the nation’s premier online election resource.

If you did not vote in the 2010 general election or if you registered to vote using a mobile device or tablet between September 14 and 24, you may not be registered, and should visit to check to check your status. Tuesday, Oct. 9, is the last day to register to vote in the November 2012 election.

There are three ballot initiatives on the November 2012 ballot and The League of Women Voters continues to provide Ballot Issues Pamphlets at no cost to Colorado residents. Ballot issues are explained and the pros and cons, as provided by the organizations supporting or opposing the initiatives, are included for each ballot issue. In addition, there is information on Colorado voting requirements, the election calendar, and much more. The ballot issues are also available in audio format at


GRAND JUNCTION – Colorado Parks and Wildlife is advising hunters heading to Game Management Unit 23 in the White River National Forest that the southeast portion of the unit will be temporarily closed by the U.S. Forest Service during the upcoming big-game seasons, due to concerns about an active wildfire in the area.

Although recent rainfall has dampened the fire, USFS officials are concerned about the number of weakened trees and snags caused by the heat and flames, as well as concerns that the fire could re-ignite as temperatures rise and rainfall moves out of the area. The closure extends through Dec. 31, but could end sooner if conditions warrant.

USFS officials say the Middle Elk Fire was caused by an unattended campfire; since its discovery, it has grown to 257 acres, burning in a mix of spruce and fir trees, open areas and high elevation aspen groves west of Forest Road 245, also known as the Buford-New Castle Road. The road is not currently included in the closure and remains open to hunters.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is reminding hunters and other outdoor recreationists to observe closure notices and to follow campfire rules and regulations as they head to their camps.

"This past summer in Colorado, we saw firsthand how serious wildfires can be," said Ron Velarde, Regional Manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. "It is concerning that, even with the loss of life and damage to property that occurred from wildfires just a few months ago, we continue to see examples of irresponsible behavior by a few people, putting many at risk."

To make sure your campfire is completely out, please follow recommended rules at

Uncompahgre Combined Clinics Wins Grant to Improve Quality of Care

NORWOOD – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet announced that Uncompahgre Combined Clinics in Norwood was awarded a $55,000 grant by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to improve the quality of care and ensure more women are screened for cervical cancer. The grant will help the center become a patient-centered medical home and increase its rate of cervical cancer screening.

“Access to preventive health screenings is an important step toward driving down health care costs,” Bennet said. “This grant will ensure that Colorado women can take more control over their care and their well being and help improve our nation’s health.”

Colorado will receive a total of $577,083 from HHS through the Quality Improvement in Health Centers program, which is awarding grants to 810 health centers nationwide as they work to make changes such as improved care coordination and management, that are necessary to become patient-centered medical homes.


TELLURIDE – The Telluride Foundation’s annual Community Grant application is now available. Nonprofit organizations serving the people who live or work in San Miguel County are encouraged to apply.  Grant applications are due Monday, Oct. 29, at 5 p.m.

The Foundation has awarded over $8.5 million in Community and Special Initiative Grants and over $20.2 million in total grants since its inception in 2000.  Last year, the Foundation awarded $901,200 in Community Grants to 70 regional nonprofits, and it expects to award a similar amount this year. The Telluride Foundation is the largest grant funder on the Colorado western slope.

“The donors of the Telluride Foundation have been incredibly generous during the past several years of tough economic times”, said Paul Major, President of the Telluride Foundation, “Because of their passionate commitment to the community, we are fortunate to be able to again make available over  $900,000 funding for the 2012 Community Grants cycle.”

Complete grant guidelines and a link to the application form are available on the Foundation’s website – Instructions for participation in the October 1st webinar are also posted on the Telluride Foundation’s website. Please contact April Montgomery, Programs Director at the Foundation at 728-8717 or for information.


MONTROSE – With the 18th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner approaching, the Montrose Community Dinners, Inc. Board of Directors will soon be seeking volunteers to assist.

Volunteers have played a huge role in the success of the past 17 Thanksgiving dinners and will, again, contribute hundreds of hours to this year’s dinner.

Between 350 and 400 volunteers are needed to make this event a success.

Jobs that need filling include cooks, dishwasher, servers, pie cutters, to-go meal servers and more. Each volunteer will be assigned a specific time shift and a specific job when calling to volunteer. Requests for specific jobs and time slots will be honored on a first-call, first served basis; once all positions are filled, a standby call list is established.

The volunteer phone line will be accepting calls to 970/964-4462 beginning Monday, Oct. 29, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., through Tuesday, Nov. 20.

Colorado and 42 Other States Have More Time to Replace Livestock

DENVER – Colorado farmers and ranchers forced to sell livestock due to drought have an extended period of time in which to replace the livestock and defer tax on any gains from the forced sales, the Internal Revenue Service has announced.

Farmers and ranchers who, due to drought, sell more livestock than they normally would, may defer tax on the extra gains from those sales. To qualify, the livestock generally must be replaced within a four-year period. The IRS is authorized to extend this period if the drought continues.

The one-year extension of the replacement period generally applies to capital gains realized by eligible farmers and ranchers on sales of livestock held for draft, dairy or breeding purposes due to drought. Sales of other livestock, such as those raised for slaughter or held for sporting purposes, and poultry are not eligible.

The IRS is providing this relief to any farm located in a county, parish, city or district, listed as suffering exceptional, extreme or severe drought conditions by the National Drought Mitigation Center, during any weekly period between Sept. 1, 2011, and Aug. 31, 2012. All or part of 43 states are listed. Any county contiguous to a county listed by the NDMC also qualifies for this relief.

Details on reporting drought sales and other farm-related tax issues can be found in Publication 225, Farmer’s Tax Guide, available on the IRS website.

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