Fundraising for center was needed
I would like to thank the Westside Pioneer for its dogged reporting and early encouragement of our Old Colorado City Historical Society's fundraising efforts when it appeared that saving the Westside Community Center was doomed to failure. While some dismissed our efforts as a waste of effort because we could not likely assure long-term sustainability of the center, we kept at it, and your paper broke the news of the identity of a benefactor - the large Woodman Valley Chapel. Thanks, Pioneer.
While the contract with the city is yet to be signed, it looks good that that organization will be able to keep the center operating with private funds for at least three years. Were our efforts fruitless? Hardly. I can announce that not only have we collected $6,000 real dollars as of April 6, we have had fruitful discussions with Richard Siever, who is expected to direct the new center. He visited our History Center and learned, for the first time, valuable and useful Westside history - for neither he nor his church is from the Westside.
We also know that even his church must still raise funds. There is no free lunch even for his generous church parishioners. So we will be pleased, as soon as the center is made official, to transfer all of our raised funds through their organization to support specific programs at the center and thus be of tangible help. Those donations will remain tax-exempt.
Even more heartwarming, his organization's members learned from our society the history of the old Buena Vista school they will occupy. They are going to name some buildings after seldom-remembered Westside educators. So our society is helping Woodman Valley Chapel become real “Westsiders.” We welcome them. And we thank all of you generous Westside donors to our society fund. I am going to lobby for a plaque to be put there that recognizes your faith in our efforts!
Old Colorado City