enculturating las vegas into the next millennium... art, dance, film, music, poetry, theater, history, nature and everything else that enriches the lives of those who live and visit southern nevada... Since 2003...

Friday, July 16, 2010

A sad day in 18b - Las Vegas' Arts District...

This is a previous post from last Sunday but it continues being relevant considering the recent news about the arts district. As I said before we will continue moving forward and rebuild even better. 

Arts District fire...
(photo by Brian Paco Alvarez)
Saturday night in 18b was jubilant with the Contemporary Arts Center's first Beer Fest at the World Famous Arts Factory. A successful fundraiser for Las Vegas' grand daddy of Contemporary Art. Friends old and new coming together for a great cause at a great location. After a beautiful evening we were all rude-fully awakened by a massive explosion that shook the neighborhood. At approximatively 6:30 Sunday morning a power transformer exploded causing severe damage to many of the businesses along Main Street from Charleston to Gass Avenue. Sadly many great little galleries were affected.

This afternoon a fire flared up near a ruptured gas line that was damaged from this mornings explosion, possibly destroying Opportunity Village's Thrift Store. In either case we who live in or near the arts district are devastated by the destruction and as I stated to Gina Quaranto proprietor of PLACE Gallery we will do everything to help her rebuild her fabulous space. The outpouring of support from the people who live in the neighborhood and beyond is amazing and shows the dynamic of having a vibrant and livable Downtown.

Sadly as I was reading local news reports online about the explosion I was disgusted by the harsh comments left by several people about our neighborhood. These cowards hide behind their aliases and speak poison of things they know not. It is disgusting that Americans would denigrate the very businesses of their fellow citizens. It is despicable that in 21st century America that we cannot look beyond negativity and come together to support those in need.

I would like to finish and say that we Downtowner's will rebuild Main Street and we will make it better then it ever was. We are going to continue investing in Downtown; we are going to have a brand new sparkling city hall; we are going to have a performing arts center; we are going to have a new arena, new galleries, restaurants, cafe's, bookstores and we are making Downtown Las Vegas the envy of every neighborhood. Whether you like it or not Downtown is not going away because we are making it the place to live, work and play in Southern Nevada.

Thank you...

Brian Paco Alvarez enculturating Las Vegas into the millennium...

posted by Brian Paco Alvarez, Curator and Chronicler of Culture at


Anonymous Niki J Sands said...

Thank you Paco for your passionate words and encouragement to those of us in the Arts District.

Setbacks are often such disappointment, but as the saying goes, "When the going gets tough, the tough get going".

I think our arts community is tough, loving, passionate and willing to work hard. They are my friends but feel like my family as well.

7:33 PM

Blogger Victor Aguirre said...

Right-on, Paco. I agree whole heartedly. Ours is a very talented and dedicated arts community who will always survive such setbacks, despite all nay-sayers.
Thanks to the tireless efforts of all like you, who champion Las Vegas as the vibrant garden of diverse Art that it is, the Arts District will surely continue to grow beyond this.
Count me in for whatever rebuild occurs.
Thanks also for your continued daily support for the Desert Sculptors proposal for a Veterans memorial @ http://www.refresheverything.com/thesentinel
A project of this nature will surely raise the profile of all Arts organizations in our city to the national level.
Semper Artis.

9:09 AM

Anonymous Tom Dyer said...

Let me know what you need, Paco.

6:55 PM

Anonymous Jacie Urquidi-Maynard said...

You speak the truth my friend and hopefully everyone will listen. Our community is thriving in the arts and everyone who plays a role will rise to the occasion to do what needs to be done and make this a better place.

Those who can't see the forest through the trees, will have to come up with something better than this to hold the art community down. We have strength in numbers along with a bond that can't be broken.

This too shall pass, with a brighter tomorrow on the horizon for everyone. "Artists' Unite" because that's what we do.

11:22 PM


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