A Blog Series
By Diane Deeter
Director of Programs & Events; Stapleton Master Community Association (MCA)
When I was asked to write a blog about the evolution of Stapleton events, thoughts of Ebenezer Scrooge danced in my head as I remembered the ghosts of events past, present and future. Stapleton has evolved in so many ways and the event programming is no exception!
Initially, Forest City Stapleton (now Brookfield Properties) hosted events at the community’s first visitor center off Martin Luther King Boulevard. In the fall of 2002, 200 people attended the first pumpkin patch, complete with a family made of stacked pumpkins; early in 2003, there was an Egg Hunt in which even parents could participate; and the first 4th of July parade in the summer of 2003 had 75 participants in the newly completed Town Green.
Still, we could never forget the Lobster Bake in the summer of 2004. It was one of our most popular events and sold out. There were those pleading online for additional tickets, and the lobsters were flown in from Maine just in time for the event! And on May Day that year, the community’s first residents found flowers on their doorsteps. The Colorado Wine Festival also took place in the fall as did the annual Pool to School Walk for the kids.
Stapleton evolved, and the MCA is now responsible for the events and programming in the community. Our budget reflects the importance placed on creating a sense of community. We offer a robust event program throughout the year. We distributed more than 14,000 eggs this year at the annual Egg Scramble on The Green, and we expect to see upwards of 100,000 people attend our events this summer. The Theatre on The Green will feature the musical “Hairspray,” and new to The Green will be the Colorado Shakespeare Festival performance of “A Midsummer’s Night Dream.”
Our wine tastings began last summer and were so popular that we decided to bring First Friday Flights back through the summer. We’re also adding Wine on Wednesdays this spring and fall. The Stapleton Beer Festival hosts 26 small, boutique brewers from around Colorado. Stapleton Rocks … a Concert for a Cause showcases neighborhood talent and has raised more than $10,000 for local charities. The fitness of the community is apparent in the participation level of the Kid’s Triathlon, which sold out last year. Our community is filled with dogs and after the pools close, they get their day in sun. Active Minds is a continuing education program offered for free in our community room. Last but not least, our movies and concerts continue throughout the summer, while the Sweet William Market and the Farmers Market fill out the event schedule on The Green.
What’s Ahead …
We have also been working on ideas for events in Conservatory Green neighborhood north of Interstate 70, and we want to be as creative as we have been south of the interstate. Our goal will be to integrate new ideas that complement the programming we have currently. New ideas come to mind every day. An evening Farmers Market is on the horizon, and we are talking about how we can bring that to the community in the next few years. We hope to continue to expand our programming and events and keep our fingers crossed that the “Ghost of Events Future” will bring us a community arts center to grow into.