This historic feat will be honored by the Montrose Chamber of Commerce September 19, with the first annual Black Canyon Ball at the Montrose Pavilion, followed by a week of celebration.
Work on the tunnel began in early 1905 and was finished in September 1909. It was one of the largest tunnel projects to be attempted at the time, eleven feet wide by twelve feet high, stretching almost six miles.
Guest speaker at the ball will be Marc Catlin, president of the Uncompahgre Water Users Association; he will discuss how the region’s past meets its future.
“Opening the Gunnison Tunnel and then delivering water to growers made this valley green while attracting a thriving population,” Catlin said recently.
According to the UVUWA website, the populations of both Montrose and Delta counties more than doubled between 1900, when the tunnel was first proposed, and 1910, a year after its completion.
The event will be a fundraiser for the Montrose Chamber, with funds raised going to support the Montrose business community.
The event will feature a live jazz band, dinner with wine and dessert, a live auction and more. Several corporate tables, secured at $750 each for a table of ten, will showcase the business they represent; it is hoped that the water theme will be incorporated in that decor.
Tickets are $50 for Chamber members, and $60 for future members.
Businesses are also encouraged to contribute auction items such as gift certificates and or items that promote their business.
For more information on the Black Canyon Ball, and to secure reservations, please call 970/249-5000.