Friday, February 20, 2015

Mesa County Fairgrounds celebrates opening of new arena

The Mesa County Fairgrounds already hosts 500 events a year, but thanks to the addition of a second arena, officials say they'll be able to host many more.

The new arena officially opens at the Mesa County Fairgrounds, 2785 U.S. 50, this weekend.

Total project cost was nearly $2.4 million for the 35,750 square foot, covered, partially enclosed arena, show office, restroom facility and 22 RV parking spaces.

Primarily, it is an equestrian arena, but it will be used for a variety of events.

"This arena will draw bigger and more horse shows," said Jo Carole Haxel, Mesa County Fairgrounds manager. "The old covered arena has been booked with a waiting list every season. The new one will allow us to accommodate larger shows, which draw people to the community for more days. It's a really good thing."

The old arena also will continue to be used for events.

On Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015, rodeo enthusiasts will fill the new arena for a barrel racing competition. Barrel racing is a rodeo event for women and girls. The event starts at 10 a.m. with exhibitions. Barrel racing starts after noon.

A beer festival called Western Slope on Tap on March 14, as well as dog and horse shows are also already planned for the new space. During the Mesa County Fair, the new arena will host live music.

Members of the media are invited to attend Saturday's (Feb. 21, 2015) barrel racing event to report on the new arena. Contact Jo Carole Haxel at (970) 986-1104 if needed.

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