DURA submits stock show analysis to mayor
National Western Stock Show leaders, joined by Mayor Michael B. Hancock and other city officials, announced they are committed to keeping the iconic and century-old Stock Show in Denver.
“Denver has been the Stock Show’s beloved home for 106 years, and our complex is a time-honored destination for visitors worldwide,” said Paul Andrews, the National Western’s president and CEO. “We want to enrich and educate the lives of millions for another century, and we believe our future exists right here where we began. By working with our dedicated city partners, we will find the best option to create a sustainable future for the world’s greatest stock show.”
The National Western’s intention is to remain at its current location in Denver’s Elyria-Swansea neighborhood and explore forging stronger partnerships and greater coordination with Art & Venues Denver and VISIT DEN- VER.
“We thank the National Western for its dedication to our city and those who have supported the show throughout the years,” Hancock said. “The National Western is a cherished cultural and economic asset that enriches our Western heritage. We stand at the ready to help them find a sustainable model that will deliver long-term success to the complex and the surrounding neighborhood.”
Last winter, Hancock requested detailed information from the National Western, including business, financial and facilities plans, to better understand the National Western’s current and future needs. Following receipt of those documents, the mayor asked the Denver Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) to provide an independent review of the data.
DURA submitted to the mayor an analysis of the National Western’s plans as well as additional comparative research of similar facilities and programs throughout the country. The analysis found that with greater coordination and stronger connections to partners such as the city, VISIT DENVER and Downtown Denver Partnership, the National Western will be better positioned to overcome existing facility and programming challenges, tap new markets, and thrive for generations to come.
“Thank you Mayor Hancock for giving DURA the opportunity to provide independent analysis, and thank you to the National Western for working with us to produce a thoughtful and useful evaluation,” said Tracy Huggins, executive director of DURA. “It is our hope this report will help inform the next steps in the decision-making process.”
Moving forward, the City and County of Denver and VISIT Denver will work with the National Western to explore options to overcome challenges and strengthen the National Western Stock Show and Complex’s program and facilities. This will include identifying short-term solutions for necessary facilities maintenance as well as long-term plans for a sustainable future for the entire 95-acre complex.
The first step will be to include the Denver Coliseum and the National Western Stock Show Complex in an upcoming feasibility study by VISIT DENVER and Arts & Venues Denver. This study will evaluate market demand and assess the facility and amenity characteristics needed to accommodate those markets.
In August, the National Western also created a Business Plan Committee composed of local business and community leaders. The committee’s mission is to assist the Stock Show in defining its brand and provide input into plans for the future. — WLJ