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Andy Vick, executive director of Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region and Dirk Draper, president and CEO of the Colorado Springs Chamber and EDC, preside over the 2018 Business and Arts Lunch. This year’s event was Thursday.

Artists and business leaders mingled on Thursday to celebrate some beautiful partnerships.

Hundreds of people crowded into the annual Business and Arts Lunch at The Antlers, A Wyndham Hotel, to honor the creative work being done throughout the Pikes Peak region. Presented by the Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region and the Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce & EDC, the event coincided with Arts Month, an initiative started in 1993 by Americans for the Arts, a nonprofit organization that promotes the arts across the country.

Five organizations were feted for their collaborations and partnerships with the arts community: BornesPro Media, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, Penrose-St. Francis Health Services and Platte Furniture. The Bee Vradenburg Foundation bestowed its Bee an Arts Champion Award to The Modbo and SPQR Experiential Art Space and Studio Gallery.

BornesPro Media, owned by husband and wife Brandon and Jini Bornes, does videography, photography and multimedia for organizations, including New Summit Charter Academy and TheatreWorks. They were honored for elevating businesses and artists, including their work on the Peak Artists series and My Black Colorado, a directory/magazine that features profiles of folks in the black community.

“Everybody has a story to tell, a story to share,” said Brandon. “They just need to know how to capture it.”

Cottonwood Center for the Arts was honored for connecting businesses and local artists through its Cottonwood Curation program.

“Business and art are the most natural potential marriage that’s out there,” said Cottonwood Executive Director Jon Khoury. “In this day and age your brand is not just your product. At Cottonwood, we identify the thing that a business wants to say. Part of that is showing art and culture can be on their walls in a way that tells the story of their brand even better than they’re able to do in traditional ways.”

Penrose-St. Francis Health Services was acknowledged for its support of the Colorado Springs Philharmonic. The organization is the title sponsor of the Philharmonic Pops series.

“Our vision at Centura Health and Penrose-St. Francis is every community, every neighborhood, every life whole and healthy,” said Dr. Brian Erling, president and CEO at Penrose-St. Francis Health Services. “Arts are very important. Music is very important. I have seen what the power of music can do in health care.”

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Platte Furniture was given kudos for its support of the Knobhill Urban Arts District, a permanent outdoor gallery started by street artist and tattoo artist Paes164 along Platte Avenue near the furniture store.

“I love that we can be part of that,” said Platte Furniture Owner Kyle Kelly. “It’s been very positive for this area. On a daily basis we see people come by and take a selfie or a family photo. It’s brought more people to the store and the whole area.”

With a mission to advance the relevance, resilience and greatness of arts in the Pikes Peak region, the Bee Vradenburg Foundation honored Lauren Ciborowski and Brett Andrus for their longtime leadership at The Modbo and SPQR Experiential Art Space and Studio Gallery, two galleries in the downtown Arts Alley District.

“Lauren and Brett have redefined the contemporary art scene in Colorado Springs,” said Foundation Executive Director David Siegel. “They’ve shown us what’s possible, what’s hip, what there’s an appetite for. That risk they took when they started The Modbo 10 years ago has paid dividends, and our community is better for it.”

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