DENVER — Huerfano County was recently awarded funding from two Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) grant programs totaling over $400,000. San Isabel Land trust received a $382,700 grant to permanently protect Redwing Ranch, near Gardner, and the Town of Walsenburg received $44,000 from GOCO’s mini-grant program which awards grants up to $45,000 for projects with a budget of $60,000 or less. The Walsenburg grant will help realize the vision of the downtown revitalization project currently underway. Miners Plaza will serve as a central hub for community gatherings and events and will provide residents and visitors with a walkable opportunity to get outside and enjoy downtown Walsenburg. The Redwing Ranch contains over a mile of the Huerfano River and more than 1,000 acres of wetlands. The ranch is a familiar sight to the approximately 15,000 people who pass the property to access nearby Blanca Peak, Mount Lindsey and the Sangre de Cristo
Wilderness Area The county has previously received over $425,000 for the Walsenburg Wild Waters Park, in addition to another mini grant for Washington Elementary School’s playground. To date, GOCO funds have helped preserve more than 7,000 acres in Huerfano County, and the most recent open space grant will add over 1,600 acres. GOCO is presently seeking applicants for its new Inspire Initiative, which offers between $1 million to $5 million in grants to selected communities to encourage kids to have more outdoor experiences. The program focuses on creating outdoor destinations like parks, improving access to outdoor location through new or improved trails, and expanding existing youth programs that introduce kids to the great outdoors. For more information on the initiative, visit goco.org/inspire.