FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Beth Buehler
Gunnison-Crested Butte Tourism Association
(970) 349-1168 or email@example.com
March Mania in Downtown Crested Butte, Colorado
Mardi Gras, Big Air on Elk, Gay Ski Week PJ Party & ArtWalk Evening part of the action
GUNNISON-CRESTED BUTTE, Colo. (February 28, 2011) —Historic Elk Avenue is the
colorful, energetic heartbeat of Crested Butte, Colo., and is known for festivals that grace historic
district all year long. March is no exception with five events that will keep things hopping.
Mardi Gras, March 6 & 8
Crested Butte is celebrating this traditional French holiday with a New Orleans twist in its own
special way as it prepares to send off Fat Tuesday with a bang. Dr. Robert – the Beatles Tribute
Band will play for two Mardi Gras costume parties at the Mallardi Cabaret on March 6. The
children’s costume party runs from 4 – 6 p.m., with prizes for best costumes and best dancing. The
cost is $5 per person of any age. A masquerade ball for grownups is from 7 – 10 p.m. with free
food, a cash bar and prizes for best costumes (couples are encourage to dress as famous pairs such
as Jack and Jill or salt and pepper). Admission is $7.50 per person.
The annual Mardi Gras parade begins making its way down Elk Avenue at 5:30 p.m. on March 8.
During the parade, receive beads and trinkets along the way and revel at the krewes. Immediately
following the parade, head to Mallardi Cabaret for the second annual gumbo cook-off beginning at
6 p.m. Admission to the cook-off is $5, which entitles you a cup and spoon for tasting.
Mardi Gras is a fund-raiser for Crested Butte Mountain Theatre, a community theatre group
established in 1972. To register an entry for the parade, enter gumbo for the cook-off or request
more information, call (970) 349-0366 or visit www.cbmountaintheatre.org.
Big Air on Elk, March 12
A ski jump in the middle of downtown? It happens in Crested Butte during Big Air on Elk when a
snowmobile pulls top local skiers and snowboarders who launch off a park-style jump that’s piled
50 feet high at Third Street and Elk Avenue. The invite-only format ensures that each jump, starting
at 7 p.m., will have a good chance of wowing the crowd. Colorado Freeskier organizes Big Air on
Elk to benefit the Crested Butte Ski Club.
202 East Georgia
Gunnison, CO 81230-2433
Phone: 970-641-7992 – Fax: 970-641-7994
March Mania, page 2
Elk Avenue will be closed from Second to Fourth Streets, and there will be a deejay, raffle and
merchandise tent to help fuel the action along with an after-party at Lobar. Crested Butte Avalanche
Center’s Big Hair on Elk will pay homage to those with the largest coiffures on the Brick Oven
deck from 5 – 10 p.m., with drink specials and prizes. Crested Butte Ski Club also will be dishing
out chili and other tasty treats by the Paradise Café.
A live broadcast will be shown on the side of the post office and posted on
www.coloradofreeskier.com and www.skicb.com. For information call (970) 349-6664.
Pajama Day/Night - Matthew Shepard Foundation Gay Ski Week, March 22
In tandem with the inaugural Matthew Shepard Foundation Gay Ski Week, March 19 – 26, the
Downtown Crested Butte Lodging Association is hosting a Pajama Day/Night on March 22 to
benefit the Matthew Shepard Foundation and homeless children charities.
10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Participating downtown retailers and restaurants will donate 5 percent or more of their profits to the
Matthew Shepard Foundation, and bins will be available at many locations to drop off new
children’s pajamas and stuffed animals. The items will be donated to Lifeworks in Austin, Texas,
and Denver Children’s Home in Denver, Colo. There is a special need for donations suiting children
ages 1 – 4 and 11 – 18. Look for merchants wearing pjs and for rainbow flags outside stores.
5 – 7 p.m.
After a day on the slopes, a PJ Town Takeover and PJ Pub Crawl will get the party started
downtown. Participating bars will give a raffle ticket for drinks purchased at their location (limit
one per person). All raffle tickets will be collected at Maxwells at the PJ Dinner and Party. Rumors
Coffee and Tea House will host PJ Speed Dating at 5 p.m. The cost to participate is $10 or it’s free
when purchasing a ticket to the Maxwells event. Funds raised at Rumors go to the foundation.
7 – 11:30 p.m.
A PJ Dinner and Party at Maxwells will continue the festivities. A gourmet three-course dinner
including salad, entrée and dessert will be served from 7 – 9 p.m., followed by a PJ dance party,
silent auction and raffle starting at 8:30 p.m. Local realtors are getting in on the fun by decorating
the tables, and free chair massages will be available. The cost is $50 per person, including dinner
and the party, or $20 at the door for the party. Bring a pair of new pjs to donate and admission to the
party is $10. Funds raised go to the Matthew Shepard Foundation.
“The Laramie Project,” a staged reading, will be presented by Western State College of Colorado
and the Matthew Shepard Foundation at Mallardi Cabaret. Laramie was the site of the murder of
Matthew Shepard, a 21-year-old, gay University of Wyoming student in 1998. The month following
his death, members of the Tectonic Theatre Project traveled to Laramie and conducted interviews,
resulting in a play about the town, its citizens and their reaction to the murder. Tickets cost $10,
with proceeds benefiting the foundation.
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10 p.m. - Close
The Dogwood Cocktail Cabin will be hosting a game night to round out the pj party theme.
Pajamas hung on clotheslines will be outside the pj party places to guide the way. For more details
and to purchase tickets, visit www.DowntownCrestedButte.com/gayskiweek. For a look at the rest
of the week’s activities, go to www.matthewshepardgayskiweek.com.
Soul Train Night, March 25
For the dance party of the year, look no further than Soul Train Night, when Gunnison County’s
community radio station KBUT will crown the valley’s King and Queen of Soul in fierce dance-off
competition. Grab a groovy costume and wear your dancing shoes to Tequila’s on March 25 from 8
p.m. – 2 a.m. Tickets are $15 and all proceeds benefit KBUT. Call (970) 349-5225 for more
ArtWalk Evening, March 31
Crested Butte’s ArtWalk Evening will wrap up the month in style with a self-guided tour of
galleries from 5 – 8 p.m. Light refreshments, music and on-site artists will be featured at many of
the seven locations: John Ingham Gallery, Oh-Be-Joyful Gallery, Rijks Family Gallery, Paragon
Gallery, Icehouse Art & Atelier, Susan Anderton Fine Art and J.C. Leacock Photo Gallery. For
more information, go to www.awearts.org.
Visitor Information & Personalized Vacation Packages
To find out more about Gunnison County events or to book personalized vacation packages, call the
Gunnison-Crested Butte Tourism Association’s toll-free line, (800) 814-8893, or visit
www.GunnisonCrestedButte.com/packages. Find the Tourism Association on Facebook at
www.facebook.com/gcbta or follow us on www.twitter.com/gcbta.
The Gunnison-Crested Butte Regional Airport is served year-round by United Airlines with flights
from Denver and during the winter season by American Airlines and Continental Airlines.
About Gunnison-Crested Butte, Colorado
Gunnison-Crested Butte is nestled among almost two million acres of pristine wilderness in
southwest Colorado. Winter sports enthusiasts know the area for its world-class alpine skiing and
snowboarding at Crested Butte Mountain Resort, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing
and ice fishing. Gunnison-Crested Butte is also a haven for outdoor summer activities. In the
warmer months, visitors can choose from recreational activities such as hiking, climbing, mountain
biking, boating, whitewater rafting, kayaking, fly-fishing, camping and horseback riding. Year-
round visitors enjoy distinctive restaurants, unique shops and stimulating cultural opportunities, and
have a wide range of lodging options — from rustic inns to guest cabins and bed-and-breakfasts to
full-service resort hotels.
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Gunnison, county seat and a real Western town, is home to the Gunnison-Crested Butte Regional
Airport, Gunnison Whitewater Park, Gunnison Valley Observatory, Pioneer Museum and Western
State College, a four-year institution offering majors in the liberal arts and sciences and professional
fields. Both Crested Butte and Gunnison have thriving historic central business districts packed
with shopping and dining opportunities.
Recognized as the ―Official Wildflower Capital of Colorado‖ by the Colorado Legislature and one
of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s ―Dozen Distinctive Destinations‖ in 2008, Crested
Butte is 28 miles from Gunnison and the site of rich mining, ranching and skiing heritage and home
to the Crested Butte Mountain Heritage Museum and Mountain Bike Hall of Fame. Only three
miles up the road is the resort village of Mt. Crested Butte, home to the ski area, an active base
area, the area’s conference center, and outstanding hiking and biking trails.
Marble is located in the Upper Crystal River Valley along the Elk Mountains and is the gateway to
nearby Crystal, home to one of the most photographed mill sites in the country. Marble has seven
sites on the National Register of Historic Places and is the location of the Yule Marble Quarry.
In Gunnison County, visitors will find the Curecanti National Recreation Area, where dinosaur
fossils were recently discovered; the Blue Mesa Reservoir, Colorado’s largest body of water and
home to the largest Kokanee salmon fishery in the United States; and The Black Canyon of the
Gunnison, one of our country’s newest national parks. Gunnison County includes the quaint and
historic towns of Pitkin, Gothic, Tin Cup, Marble, Powderhorn, Almont and Crystal, plus the better-
known communities of Gunnison, Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte. Gunnison County is part of
the West Elk Loop and Silver Thread Scenic & Historic Byways.