Creating Denver

Although sports stars get all the attention, Denver’s artists are the real hometown heroes. So in 2005, Westword started the MasterMind Awards as a way to not just recognize the aesthetic adventurers who are changing the cultural landscape of this town — who are literally creating Denver — but reward them financially with no-strings-attached grants. To date, Westword has given more than $100,000 to thirty artists and arts groups — who, more often than not, have used their cash prizes to help others. “Winning the MasterMind meant that I didn’t have to bus tables and I could completely focus,” says Brandi Shigley, part of the creative class of 2005. “It allowed me to get my first world headquarters outside of my bedroom. It allowed me to take the time I needed to develop my business of helping others grow their businesses.”

You’ll hear more from Shigley, as well as many other winners, at Meet the MasterMinds, a Create Denver event that officially runs from 7 to 9 p.m. tonight at the Flower Garage, 1430 Delgany Street, with an unofficial party to follow. I’ll be moderating the meet with Deborah Jordy, head of the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts and co-chair of Create Denver. The event is free (and alcoholic beverages will be served!), but registration is required; for more info on this and all of the other Create Denver activities, go to
Thu., April 15, 7-9 p.m., 2010

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun

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