Susan Schiesser and Pat Walsh have a vision for Steamboat Springs.
The two self-proclaimed art activists would like to see the city become a thriving artistic hot spot. Their program, ArtLink, is an attempt to work with businesses and artists to create an artistic culture for tourists in Steamboat Springs.
This summer, ArtLink is introducing ArtLine, a free shuttle service that will transport riders to locations of interest.
"We really need to do something to enhance the art community," said Walsh, ArtLink's director.
ArtLine will use a Steamboat Springs Transit bus.
Starting today, ArtLine shuttles will pick up riders at stops throughout downtown Steamboat and drive them to 48 different "art spots."
Schiesser, ArtLink's founder, said these places include galleries, bookstores, restaurants, craft stores, historic sites and more.
"It's not just about looking at paintings," Walsh said.
She hopes the program will help promote and encourage cultural activities across the city, including live music and theater events.
ArtLine shuttles will run 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. every Thursday. The shuttle will begin at the Stockbridge Multi-Modal Transit Center on U.S. Highway 40, and run through town and up the mountain.
Pamphlets soon will be available in participating businesses and on the shuttles. The pamphlets will include ArtLine's stops as well as a list of all the businesses participating in ArtLink. Steamboat Springs Transit also added ArtLine's routes onto its existing bus brochures, which are available on city buses.
There will be scheduled events every week at some of ArtLine's stops. A comprehensive calendar is available online at www.artlink
steamboat.org/calendar.html and also will be available in the participating businesses.
ArtLine will kick off with six events today.
Pairs of goblets will be marked 15 percent off at the Steamboat Art Company. In a photo clinic at the Portfolio Collection on Oak Street, people will be invited to bring in their own work for a professional critique.
Stephan Zittel will give an art presentation at Home on the Range in Torian Plum Plaza.
The shuttle will stop by the art exhibits "Transitions and Clouds" at the Depot and at Jessica Maynard's "Aspect of Woman" at the River Art Studio.
Schiesser and Walsh are confident that ArtLine and ArtLink will be beneficial to Steamboat.
"I'm sure it is going to succeed," Walsh said. "People will support it."
Schiesser and Walsh have invested their own money into the project.
"We're actually putting our money where our mouth is," Schiesser said.
Transit drivers are eager to work the ArtLine route, Schiesser said.
"We hope that we're promoting the art community in Steamboat Springs," Steamboat Springs Director of Transportation Services George Krawzoff said.