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JANUARY 16 / FEBRUARY 13, 2019

REDSTONE • REVIEW

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OPTIONS WOMEN IN BUSINESS SERIES

and run, but they loved working on the mural too. These two generations taught each other a lot and shared a strong sense of pride in their collaboration.” After the mural’s success, Rivers joined forces with Pricilla Cohen to create the Confluence Community Arts (CoCoA). In 2010, building on the same vision that inspired Lyons Past, Present and Future, CoCoA began work on the Clarifier Mosaic project at the intersection of Hwy. 36 and Black Bear Hole, utilizing the former wastewater treatment plant as a 900-sq.-ft. canvas. “We had a basic concept of what we wanted and sketched it out with chalk,” Rivers said. Local residents brought different styles of tile to the location and began sorting them into colors, but that wasn’t meant to be the limit of their participation. “It was important to us that people understood they didn’t need to be artists to participate in the creation process. We gave little demonstrations, asked that they integrate their work where the last person stopped, and let them follow their vision. There were a few bumps over the eight years, including the flood. The Clarifier Project embodies what a successful community-made public art piece can be: it bridged the community through colors, through art, through textiles; it made people feel relevant.” While engaged in her pro-bono public art management role, Rivers worked as an art teacher, beat cancer, got a divorce, reestablished a home after the flood, and started a business as an Architectural Color Consultant, a person who designs and guides a plan with color as the predominating tool. “I love painting in multi-media and photography, but I knew I wanted that separate from my professional life,” she said about deciding on her new career path. “Everything I did boiled down to color.” Rivers began researching where she could use that pasCathy Rivers, owner of Rivers ColorWorks + Design, was instrusion in combination with her other skills. “I mental in two of Lyons’ most visible public artworks: the Clarifier enjoy working with people and empowering Community Mosaic project, and the mural at the visitor center them with art. It made sense to help people entitled “Lyons Past Present and Future.” transform their residential or commercial space into a warm, inviting environment they never want to leave, with color.” work with the two generations,” Rivers said. “The seniors With a BFA in Drawing and Painting and an Art were still young at heart and wanted to be engaged with the community. We thought maybe the kids would turn Continue Rivers on Page 14

Thinking in color describes Cathy Rivers By Tamara Vega Haddad Redstone Review LYONS – Architectural color consultant and founder of Rivers ColorWorks + Design, grew up with her eight siblings outside of Chicago. Every morning the children would come down for breakfast Haddad and see the Formica kitchen table covered with their mother’s elaborate drawings. When they returned from school that afternoon, the table was wiped clean – until the next morning. Cathy Rivers’ mother saw everything with the potential for color. “We had new wood-paneled walls. Mom mixed some blue and green paint with turpentine and asked my dad to wipe it on the walls with a rag,” Rivers says. “He was very much against it; we were all freaked out. But when it was finished, it looked beautiful.” She taught her children to be visual people and to think in color. “I didn’t know her influence back then, I would go to friends’ birthday parties and was embarrassed because she would save bits of paper and odd objects and make these goofy collaged wrapping papers. I would think, why can’t she just go buy a roll of colored wrapping paper at the store like all the other moms?” The apple didn’t fall far from the tree. Walking into Rivers’ office studio, you see a full wall of neatly organized clear drawers labeled: maps, calendars, embossed, solids, stripes, ribbon, stencils, birds, and so on. She clearly embraced the life of a visual thinker. And digging into her own experiences growing up in a family of 11, she applied the necessity of collaboration to two of Lyons’s most notable public art pieces: the Clarifier Community Mosaic project and a mural, Lyons Past Present and Future. In 2000 Rivers and Candace Shepard began work on Lyons Past, Present and Future, a permanent mural piece on the west side of the Visitors Center, with the vision of engaging the Lyons’s senior and youth communities. By 2002 the Gap Group, the Lyons Golden Gang, and many young people finished the mural that simultaneously depicts the history, the present, and an envisioned future of the town of Lyons. “It was an incredible experience to

Suicide awareness for everyone – free class offered on February 2 By Janaki Jane Redstone Review LYONS – Most people don’t know what to do when someone they know says they are suicidal. Learning intervenJane tion skills could change that. Why is this important? At least 1,168 people died by suicide in Colorado in 2018, and we are consistently in the top ten states with the highest suicide rates. It is most common among men from 45 and 64, something that surprises many people. And it is the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 15 and 34. We in Lyons can be a part of changing these scary and sobering statistics. When we learn to talk about suicide, and to ask the question even though we are scared of the answer, we start to break down the barriers that stop desperate people from

asking for help. You can be the one to save a life in this way. For this reason, the Lyons Mental Health Initiative is offering a no-cost Suicide Awareness for Everyone program called safeTALK, on Saturday, February 2, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Lyons Community Church. Breakfast will be served at 8:30 a.m. safeTALK is a program that has trained over 500,000 people internationally in the last decade. Why? For the same reason we get trained in CPR and First Aid – we want to save lives. Just like physical and heart attack first aid, this is suicide first aid. Attendees will learn about suicide, how to recognize when to talk about it and ask about it, and what to do if the answer to “Are you thinking about killing yourself?” is “Yes.” safeTALK as a program has safety built in. There is always a community resource person who is trained to talk confidentially with anyone who might be having a hard time with the information and top-

ics in the class. If you are worried that learning about suicide might bring up feelings of despair for yourself or others, there is no need. Safety is built right into the structure of the class. Talking about suicide is scary and uncomfortable, it’s true. You might be feeling that reading this article. In the safeTALK class, you learn to trust your gut, learn how to recognize the signs that someone might need help, and then you get to practice scenarios where you can ask “Are you okay? Are you thinking about suicide?” This makes it more likely that you will be able to respond if someone around you demonstrates the signs that they are in danger. The class is short and accessible. It is being offered without cost to the participants through the Lyons Mental Health Initiative. The Lyons Mental Health Initiative was started at the Lyons Regional Library in 2017 to address issues of mental health and mental ill-

ness in the Town of Lyons, to decrease the stigma associated with mental health issues, and open up the conversation about mental health in the town. Through Community Conversations on Mental Health, classes in Mental Health First Aid and safeTALK, library materials, and articles like this one in the local papers, the Initiative is working to make Lyons a healthier place for all of us to live. Sponsoring the program along with the Lyons Regional Library are: the Lyons Community Church and its pastor, Emily Kintzel; the Town of Lyons through a Goodwill Fund Grant; Foothills United Way; and Longmont’s Supporting Action for Mental Health. Anyone can register for the safeTALK program by emailing your name, email address and phone number toinfo@lyonsregionallibrary.com, or calling the Library at 303-823-5165 and leaving your name and phone number with them there.

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