Latest News – September 5

Festival Celebrates Art, Artists in Saguache Today

The 8th Annual Saguache Arts Festival was held on August 19, featuring an array of creations and crafts.  This year’s festival featured more than 20 artists with music and food throughout the Town of Saguache. And the weather was perfect!

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Teri Rills stands beside the stump-carved sculpture outside her studio in Saguache during the 8th annual Saguache Art Festival held August 19.

More than 200 attendees got to roam the galleries, shops, and studios, featuring some of the regions finest from Kelsey Pedersen, to Teri Rill, to Riff and Marilyn Fenton.

“It was a good turnout,” said Barry Van Sant, President of the Saguache Chamber of Commerce who presents the annual event, now in its 8th year.

New participants this year include Ramblin’ Roy with his assemblage sculptures and Ruby Creek Press’ photographic postcards of Saguache. Old favorites include Saguache’s award-winning Fiber Artists and Quilters.

The Fentons had a live pottery demonstration at their studio on San Juan down the street from the Magpie Gallery, where local musicians kept the vibe alive as visitors shopped for exotic African art as well one-of-a-kind whimsical creations.

Byron Williams kept festival-goers entertained at the Smith Market Gallery with his gourd-eous work, while across the street Teri Rill’s studio, proudly displayed the tree trunk carved into a bouquet. The event was a true celebration of the burgeoning arts scene happening in Saguache Today.

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Stephanie Beuchler (left) and Barry Van Sant (right) hold down the booth for the Saguache Chamber of Commerce which presents the annual Saguache Art Festival.

Another component to the 8th Annual Saguache Art Festival that saw a huge spike in numbers was participation in the 4th Annual Saguache County Photography Contest.

“We’ve never had so many entries,” said Sarah Fernandez who has organized the event from its inception. With a total 125 photos from 29 artists, 75 voters had a difficult time selecting their favorites in each of the nine categories: Action, Historical Buildings, Landscape, Local/Current, Pets, Series, Wildlife, Miscellaneous,  and Miscellaneous/Organic.

And perhaps as a testament to tradition meeting up with technology in Saguache County, the Grand Champion Photo – “Round-Up” was captured by Josiah Brinkley from his iPhone! For complete Photo Contest Results:  CLICK.

Fernandez also wanted to make mention of a few supporters of this annual event, from Mary Morfitt with the United Methodist Church who provided the venue for the exhibit, to Stephanie Beuchler with the Wapiti Coffee House for donating camera accessories to top winner and Barry Van Sant with the Saguache Chamber for donating $50 for the Grand Champion Prize. And finally, thanks to the Town of Saguache for proving the grant money that helps make the annual event possible.

“Thanks to all the exhibitors and voters who make this event bigger and better each year,” stated Fernandez. “I hope you keep coming back; Keep taking pictures!” Participants should note that there will be a few minor changes to the contest, as well as additional categories for next year. Stay Tuned!

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With a total 125 photos from 29 artists, 75 voters had a difficult time selecting their favorites in each of the nine categories: Action, Historical Buildings, Landscape, Local/Current, Pets, Series, Wildlife, Miscellaneous, and Miscellaneous/Organic. This year’s contest, which is held in conjunction with the Saguache Art Festival, had a record number of photo entries.

Chamber’s Speaker Program: Computers, Cleaning

Tonight, Tuesday, Sept. 5, the Saguache Chamber of Commerce continues with its popular speak program, welcoming Brenda Garcia, Owner/Proprietor of Bear Claw Computers and the Westwind Cleaning Company. The presentation beings at 6 p.m. at the County Road & Bridge at 305 3rd. St. in Saguache.chamber logo

Brenda Garcia, a Saguache native and longtime resident, has offered to share her story at the next Chamber meeting. A few years ago, Garcia started Bearclaw Computers in Saguache to help fill the need for local computer services. Garcia services desktop and laptop computers, configures and troubleshoots computer networks and internet access, and she provides data security services as well. Some of her notable clients at Bearclaw include Saguache Works and the Town of Saguache. she also recently began the Westwind Cleaning Company performing all cleaning services for commercial and residential and even auto detailing. Westwind Cleaning Company provides, for example, commercial cleaning services at the Joyful Journey Spa.

Come and hear Brenda Garcia speak about herself, her businesses, and hear why she has decided to remain here in Saguache and provide these valuable and needed services to the community. Brenda is from a long line of Saguache natives and her family extends back to the original settlers of the Town. Maybe she’ll share some insight into the town history as well!

The Chamber monthly meetings (as always) are open to the public. Please contact the Chamber at or call Barry at 719-322-7298 if you have any questions about this meeting or if you’d like to know more about the Chamber Speaker Program.


BECOME a Chamber Member! Saguache Chamber President Barry Van Sant provides an update regarding Saguache tourism during the San Luis Valley Tourism Association held at Adams State University on February 21. Photo: Saguache Today/Kathy Bedell.

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