The annual Bauer House Fourth of July celebration will return this year to raise money for the Mancos Valley Historical Society.
Bobbi Black, who owns the antique house, used the Independence Day event for many years as a fundraiser for local causes, like the Medicine Horse Center or equipment for a child with spina bifida, but she stopped the fundraising part of it three years ago.
This year proceeds from ticket sales will go to help the Historical Society’s ongoing efforts to open a new museum. The event will start at 5 p.m. with food, live music and outdoor games for all ages.
“We’re bringing it back as a big community affair, instead of being minimalistic,” Black said.
She and Mancos jewelry artist Patty Russell are organizing the event, which she hopes will bring at least 100 people to the Bauer House lawn. The P&D Grocery will provide a barbecue brisket meal, and other volunteers will bring dessert.
Past Fourth of July fundraisers have brought in as much as $18,000, Black said.
“The Historical Society is very much in need,” she said. “They’re trying to find a home, a permanent place for their museum, so that’s why we chose to support them.”
The Historical Society has been looking for a new museum location for several years. A potential lease with the Mancos Fire Department fell through last year, and although local real estate agent Carrie Baikie is allowing the group to use part of her Grand Avenue office as a temporary museum, a permanent location remains elusive.
Linda Simmons, president of the Historical Society, said the group’s ultimate goal is to raise $50,000 to cover renovation, security and other costs for a new building. Its leaders plan to hold several other fundraisers this year to try and meet that goal, starting with a yard sale on July 7, and they will also send volunteers to help out at the Bauer House event.
Mancos folk band Sweetwater Station will perform at the event, and old-fashioned Fourth of July games like croquet and miniature golf will be available for as long as the daylight lasts.
The Bauer House is typically a prime viewing area for the Mancos Fourth of July fireworks, but on Tuesday Mancos Fire Chief Tony Aspromonte said this year’s display has been canceled because of fire danger and uncertainty on whether the town’s fireworks supplier will be sending a truck to Southwest Colorado.
Tickets for the event will be available through Friday at the Mancos Visitor Center, Artisans of Mancos Gallery and Kilgore American Indian Arts. The entry fee is $20 for guests aged 10 and up, but kids under 10 get in for free.
Mancos Brewing Co. will also celebrate the Fourth of July with a 6 p.m. concert by the Durango band Lawn Chair Kings.