Dear Editor:

Kickoff to Winter was a great success, opening doors to the community to attend the Salida chamber’s free winter mini-expo showcasing all there is to do in the area during the colder months.

As part of our mission we work hard to promote networking opportunities at little or no cost to our vendors and public.

It was networking at its best with added bonuses of free pizza, beer tasters and free giveaways.

First-time vendor attendees Paul Carey and Mary Surrena, owners of 14ers Wieners, said it was a spectacular night, that they reached out to a great number of folks and felt the event was not only fun but well structured, and they are looking forward to the next kickoff.

Dawn and Rick Barrowman of Alba Bakery dittoed their comments and added that a few people they met at the kickoff patronized their business just days after, so the exposure and networking were effective.

Nic and Angle Rowell, proprietors of Discovery Pass, took the opportunity to make personal connections with other vendors and attending public. A plus was the event was free, with food, drink and a lot of great giveaways.

The kickoff seemed to be the perfect allotted time, 5-7 p.m., enough time to visit all vendors, partake of the hot fresh Domino’s pizza, grab a beer taster from Elevation, participate in giveaways and then promptly at 7 p.m., jump in line at the SteamPlant lobby for to view the Warren Miller film that folks had purchased tickets for days in advance.

To help pull off the Kickoff, we had some special member business sponsors, including Monarch Mountain, Domino’s, Elevation Beer Co., and the SteamPlant Event Center. Thank you for the continued support of an event that keeps giving back.

To our participating vendors, we wish to thank 14ers Wieners, A Church, Absolute Bikes, Alba Bakery & Coffee, Ark Valley Helping Hands, Ark Valley High Rollers, Ark Valley Voice LLC, Centennial Tattoo, Colibri Creative, Colorado Central Telecom, Colorado Christian University, Creekside Chalets, Discovery Pass, Fantasy Games & Comics, Harmony Workshops, Little Red Tricycle, Manhattan Hotel;

Manipura Juice Co., Monarch Dog Sled Rides, Monarch Mountain, Mount Shavano Ski Shop, Pampered Soul MedSpa & Oxygen Bar, Phreckles Photography, REACH Air Medical Services, Riveting Experience Jewelry, Salida Council for the Arts, Salida Hot Springs Aquatic Center, Salida Museum, Salida Walking Tours, Salida Business Alliance, The Grapevine Magazine, The Next Eddy and Wood’s High Mountain Distillery.

To our generous donors for the awesome giveaways, thanks to Monarch Mountain, Riveting Experience Jewelry, Salida Vibes, Chill Salida, The Boathouse, Discovery Pass, Salida Hot Springs Aquatic Center, Salida Museum, Mount Shavano Ski Rental, Wood’s High Mountain Distillery, SteamPlant Event Center, Arkansas River Tours, Fantasy Games & Comics, Integrity Tattoo, Pampered Soul MedSpa & Oxygen Bar and A Church.

The evening was a success and we look forward to hosting another Kickoff to Winter in 2020 with our partner Monarch – Salida’s Hometown Mountain.

Lori Roberts, executive director,

Heart of the Rockies

Chamber of Commerce