Current Events and Programs

Gallery, Gift Shop & Columbine Room
San Juan Mountain Mining & NG RR History
Exhibits, Show, Sale • Silent Auction.
FREE History Programs
Narrow Gauge Railroading in the Uncompahgre Valley. With Karl Schaeffer, Ridgway Railroad Museum.
San Juan Mountains Mines & NG Railroads. With Kate Burke and
History of Ouray, with Gail Saunders, Ouray Museum.

Montrose Center for the Arts celebrates San Juan Mountain mining history and the steam-powered narrow gauge railroads that served them. This is a community event, involving  presentations by  Ouray County Historical SocietyRidgway Railroad Museum, and Guest Artist, Jeff Ellingson, curator at the Durango Roundhouse Museum. The Lucky Stars, entertained at the opening Reception, Friday July 2nd. The themed show features work from regional artists and photographers.

Exhibiting in the MCA Gallery through July

Exhibiting in the MCA Columbine Room all month

Special Programs & Community Events through July
Ouray County Historical Society | Ridgway Railroad Museum | Guest Artist from Durango Roundhouse Museum

The community event continues all month, with a special programs at the Montrose Art Center.

Fri., July 2nd at 6:30 pm Jeff Ellingson talked about the Durango Silverton Railroad and its place in San Juan Mountains history and his 37 years working his way up from car cleaner to museum curator. Jeff also told some stories about his special friend, the late James Burke, and recited one of Burke’s nostalgic poems–a beautiful tribute. Thank you Jeff!

Sat., July 3rd. Hike to Corkscrew Turntable With Don Paulson, of Ouray County Historical Society

Wed., July 14, 1-2 p.m. Railroad History of the Uncompahgre Valley, Then and Now. Presented by Karl Schaffer, President of the Ridgway Railroad Museum,

Wed., July 21, noon-2 p.m. San Juan Mountains Mining and Railroad History AND History of Ouray. Presented by Kate Burke, Vice President of the Montrose Center for the Arts and regional history book and magazine publisher, and Gail Saunders, Ouray County Historical Society Archivist. Includes historical photos, video, stories, and time for Q&A. Brown bag lunch.

Friday, July 30, 6-8 pm. Anne Hockenberry popular Art educator, conducts a special evening class, Gems and Mineral Painting.


Silent Auction, Original watercolor paintings by Virginia Blackstock and Jeff Ellingson.

Mineral Exhibit in the Gift Shop.

Historical photo display in Columbine Room with Jeff’s Ellingson train art.

Books and greeting cards by local authors and artists and Silverwork from Silverton for sale in Gift Shop.

Musical events. The Art Center was recently gifted a grand piano, and a few soirees are planned, dates yet to be determined. Contact us if you’d like to play!

Stay tuned, there will be more. If you have a related topic you would like to present, please contact the art center at 970-787-9428 or email Montrose Art Center:

August 2021

Natalie Heller, featured artist. “A Midwesterners Dream”

Exhibit:  The Rood Collection. European art from 1830-1910.
Fri. Aug. 6. Opening Reception. With piano music by Noalani.
Wednesday, August 18. History Wednesday: With Zilla May Brown
History of Montrose

Fri., Aug. 13, 5-8 pm. “No Matter What, Keep on Laughing” Comedy & Music. GET YOUR TICKETS NOW!
Doors, bar, concession stand open at 5:30. Show 6-8:30 pm.

August 21, 10-11:30 Youth Appreciation Day Arts & Crafts project.

Art Center Fundraiser – All Month
Bid on original Watercolor by renowned artists Virginia Blackstock and Jeff Ellingson

D&RGS 315 by Virginia Blackstock

Virgina Blackstock D&RG 315

Artist has donated painting for fundraiser!

CLICK HERE to place a bid on this beautiful painting – now on display in the gallery.

Lightner Creek Trestle. By Jeff Ellingson

Artist has donated painting for fundraiser!

CLICK HERE to place a bid on this beautiful painting displayed in the gallery all month in July.


Plein Aire Summer Paint Days
May – September

Last Saturday of each month May through September. May 29.   Mike Simpson| June 26.  Mary Pat Ettinger |  Aug. 28.  Barbara Kendrick | Sept. 25.  Marko Marino

Details, Sign-up.