The Tri-Lakes is an area of northern El Paso County in Colorado. It is comprised of two municipalities, the Town of Monument) and Palmer Lake and unincorporated El Paso County. The SMSA of the region is about 50,000 but is highly fragmented with no one organizing structure. The goal was to use the arts as a unifying element.
Here are some examples of the contributions made to the Tri-Lakes community since that time.
Ø After conducting community and business interviews and focus groups to identify how the community wanted to interact with the arts, the organization was refocused from sponsorship of an annual indoor art show to an annual outdoor sculpture exhibit.
Ø When the Town of Monument was building its new administration building and police station, they were encouraged to include 2 pedestals for art in the execution of the landscape, which they did providing the first locations for public art.
Ø Working with the Town of Monument and the District 38 School District, a mud flat next to a historic building now used as the school’s administration building on the main entrance to historic Monument was tilled, seeded, sprinklers installed, and 7 concrete pedestals added to create a sculpture park where a rotating exhibit is on display for a year at a time.
Ø Working with the Town of Monument and a local boy scout troop’s eagle scout program, the town’s two story water treatment plant, located on a major entrance to the town, was transformed with a 30 ft long, sculpture depicting a historic photograph of ice cutting on Monument Lake during the 1800’s. The site is landscaped and the sculpture lighted at night creating an entrance to the historic district and illustrating the area’s support of the arts.
Ø Peoples Bank had included a sculpture of a coal miner outside its Monument location when first built. It was the first piece of public art in the area. Once additional sculptures were being added, it was decided to create an annual map of the entire Tri-Lakes area showing the location of all art available for the public to view. 1000 of these full color maps are distributed annually.
Ø When El Paso County decided to construct a roundabout at the intersection of Baptist Road and the Old Denver Highway (the second of two major entrances to Monument and the Tri-Lakes) Tri-Lakes Views was approached to add art to the center of the roundabout. “Aspen Grove” was installed in June, 2016, comprised of 12 metal sculptured “trees” standing 20 ft tall and lighted at night.
Ø Pedestals- A communities contribution to the arts. Each of the pedestals on which sculptures are displayed have been personally sponsored. Those at the sculpture park at Big Red have plaques identifying who paid $1000 to have it built. Those at Town Hall and the Trailhead park plus a new one to be constructed on 2nt St. were sponsored by the Town of Monument. Tri-Lakes Center for the Arts built one outside its facility in Palmer Lake. Each of the “trees” in the Aspen Grove installation was also sponsored by locals. Contributors are acknowledged on a kiosk in the Baptist Road Trail Head Park and on the annual map.
In 2003, the Tri-Lakes area was an Interstate 25 truck stop between Castle Rock and Colorado Springs. Today it is one of the fastest growing areas in southeastern Colorado. This year, Tri-Lakes Views will again host an annual exhibit of public art throughout the community including the 6 pieces of public art in the community’s permanent collection.
“Ice Harvest” corner of Beacon Lite and 2ndStreet
“Aspen Grove”Baptist Road Roundabout
“Leaf of Grass”, “Poppy” and “Sail Fish”Sculpture Park, District 38 Adm. Bldg.
“1304”(Tumbling Blocks) Sculpture Park at 3rdSt. and Santa Fe Trailhead
Tri-Lakes View looking west from Baptist Road
Photographer: Sky Hall.
Images of the Tri-Lakes region of Northern El Paso County, Colorado.
Pikes Peak stands 14,115 ft and is the highest summit of the southern Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. 12 miles west of downtown Colorado Springs.