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Big investments into Golden's art scene will be showcased at Artsweek

Big investments into Golden's Art scene will be showcased at Arts week
Big investments into Golden's Art scene will be showcased at Arts week 03:30

Significant investments into Golden's art scene are helping to ensure the city's attraction goes beyond recreation.


"Golden, as you know, is known for beer, outdoors, you know, maybe some restaurants and Coors. Right?  As it should be, and that's so cool that's our stuff, but we also have this great arts scene and our theater scene," said Len Matheo with the Miners Alley Performing Arts Center.

A scene that is expanding -- between Miner's Alley and the Foothills Art Center -- the city of Golden's history has a new future.

"It could have turned into office space ... It could have eventually sold; it could have been demolished. Who knows?" Hassan Najjar said.

Najjar, the executive director of Foothills Art Center, is talking about Astor House and their new home.

"In 2014, it was abruptly shut down because of structural issues. It sat vacant for a while, and then in 2020 the opportunity came up for us at Foothills Art Center to do something with it so we worked with the City of Golden and we put on this addition," Najjar said.

The new space means the original space, a century-old church down the street, could undergo its own transformation.

Now, it's operating as the city's "creative campus" with a focus on fueling a pipeline of new artists.

"That space used to hold two exhibition galleries, and one classroom now holds 10 artists' studio spaces, three classrooms and a new ceramics studio," Najjar said.

Across the street from the newly renovated Astor House is a similar story inside the Miners Alley Performing Arts Center.

"One dressing room here is bigger than all the dressing rooms in the other space," Matheo said.

Sprinkled into the buildings million-dollar renovations, you'll find a nod to its history as the family-owned Meyer Hardware.

"We're going to do everything we can to keep that wall," Matheo said about the handprints left behind by the Meyer family.

In the first phase of renovations, Golden now has a 157-seat theater, state of the art sound equipment, space for acting and film studies and a new box office,

Najjar and Matheo are now looking ahead to what phase two can bring, and they have already launched a capital campaign to help raise the funds to make it happen.

"We get 300 sets. We have an education center. We have a black box theater. We have artists housing," Matheo said.

With all of the change, both Najjar and Matheo agree Golden will soon be center stage.

"It takes it to a whole new level," Matheo said.

The renovations at Foothills Art Center and phase one of Miners Alley are all complete just in time for Artsweek Golden, where you can find all the information for the free event.

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