Inaugural Dolores talent show a hit
Fundraiser benefits School to Farm Project
It seemed like the entire town came in from the freezing cold Friday night to enjoy a talent show put on by the Montezuma School to Farm project.
For several hours, it was standing-room only in the Dolores River Brewery as 15 acts were performed, ranging from poetry and belly dance, to guitar playing and one-act plays.
The dapper Harrison Topp, an America Corp .Vista volunteer, emceed the event. He deftly arranged each act, and successfully corralled the children for their very cute singing games and parades, including a cake walk.
"We're spanning a broad spectrum here," Topp said during a 3-second break. "There was a lot of interest, and the crowd is really supportive."
Kids showed off their talent in the first half of the show. Later on, the adult crowd relished the Troupe Verde belly-dance performance, standing on chairs and benches while hooting and hollering.
There was some Dylan-esque guitar strumming, comedy routines, fiddle playing, and performance art with well-memorized poetry.
The whole point of the revelry was raising funds for the School to Farm Project, said director Sarah Syverson.
"This is our first event in Dolores," she said. "We wanted to involve the community here in the School to Farm project."
There are school gardens in Dolores and Mancos that serve K-12. Another garden program is at Cortez Middle School. These gardens were built in 2011 and have been utilized as a classroom for an average of 700 students a month.
The event raised $1,200, and will help keep the Dolores Schools garden alive.
"This talent show is home-grown, and we are all about home-grown vegetables," Syverson said, her voice drowned out by crowd cheers. "We're connecting with our farming heritage."
School to Farm works to integrate science and agriculture lessons into the curriculum. It also offers agricultural tours and a peer mentor program for students.
Three AmeriCorps volunteers assist with the programs.
In the family category Two Peas and a Pod, a father daughter comedy team, won first place. Second place went to Kayla Tallmadge, who sang a life-affirming song; and third place went to Toni Lyn for her fiddle playing.
In the adult category, Jamie Becktel won for her karaoke of an Aretha Franklin song. Second place went to Gretchen Groenke for her spoken-work piece, and third place went to the Troupe Verde Belly Dancers.