A series of meetings aimed at bringing Battlement Mesa and Parachute closer together is set to continue on Wednesday.
The two communities in Western Garfield County agreed earlier this year to create a Grand Valley State Committee. The committee, made up of officials and leaders from local organizations, helps facilitate discussions about how Parachute and Battlement Mesa can better achieve common goals around infrastructure, housing and economic needs, a statement from city press.
The first public meeting was held on March 29. More than 100 people, including Garfield County Commissioner Mike Samson, Garfield County Housing Authority Executive Director Cheryl Strouse, and Parachute City Manager Travis Elliott attended.
The second meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Grand Valley Recreation Center, 398 Arroyo Drive, Battlement Mesa. Local officials and leaders will tackle some of the region’s most common challenges: childcare accessibility, social services and economic development, the statement said.
“The problems we face as a region can only be solved by working together. Our committee’s goal is to bring communities together so that we can work toward common future goals,” Vinnie Tomasulo, committee member and assistant director of the Battlement Mesa Metro District and Service Association, said in the release. “It doesn’t matter where you live. We are in the same boat as one community.
The June meeting also aims to build on community dialogue and continue to identify issues that the two communities can work on together.
After identifying common issues, a third meeting will be held in September to discuss solutions and next steps.
Wednesday’s town hall, which is free, will be hosted by Parachute Mayor Tom Rugaard and Grand Valley Recreation Center Manager Steve Matzl. The event features nine speakers, from agencies like Early Childhood Network, Aspen Hope Center and Grand River Health.
Dinner will be offered by Alpine Bank and free childcare will be available for the duration of the event. Live translation will also be provided during the event by the Grand Valley Residents Team, the statement said.
There is time for questions and answers at the end of the evening, and audience participation will be encouraged to set the stage for the third and final meeting in the three-part series.
“We look forward to continuing the conversation with the community. We are a strong and cohesive region, but only if we work together. Rugaard said in the statement. “Our whole is definitely greater than the sum of our parts.”