Grand County, keeping the blues alive |

Grand County, keeping the blues alive

To the Editor:

I just wanted to send thanks to Lori Oury and Fraser Valley Elementary School for their constant support of the Grand County Blues Society’s (GCBS) Blues In The Schools (BITS) program. The program is designed to bring in local, regional and national blues artists into Grand County and the school system to educate students and adults about the origins of blues music and to keep music alive in the hearts of all ages.

With school budget cuts all across the nation, GCBS has made it our goal to help with the “arts” in the Grand County classrooms. We are able to fund these programs through donations, sponsorships and grants, including grants from the Grand Foundation and from our Grand County commissioners.

Over this past year, we are extremely pleased that students ranging from the Fraser Learning Center to high school levels have become even more involved with our BITS programs. These programs include involvement with the 2008 Mary Jane Parade Blues Float, The Shining Stars/Blue Star Connection events, the Middle Park High School BITS blues band called “The Runaways,” students taking advantage of our award-winning program “Check Out The Music,” utilizing our free guitar lessons in Grand County libraries, and now the Fraser Valley Elementary “Bluesical.”

We give hats off to Lori Oury and all of Fraser Valley Elementary School for embracing the blues and utilizing the BITS program to help create the blues opera, the “Bluesical.” It makes blues music electric and participatory for the kids, and turns the blues music into community event. Thank you for adding kindling to the blues flame, keeping the blues flame high.

Also, I’d like to give special thank you to local musician Yaniv Salzberg who has helped graciously with the BITS program and the “Bluesical.” We greatly appreciate his willingness to share his musical talents with our kids.

P.S. If anyone would like to know how to get involved in the GCBS’s Blues In The Schools program, please do not hesitate to contact me at or

Maria Chavez

Director of the Blues In The Schools

Grand County Blues Society

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