120 Years: 1983

Oil shale boom projects that were well underway before Black Sunday are completed in 1983.

Dan Thurlow’s Grand Junction Athletic Club, the Bank of Grand Junction and the $9 million Hilton hotel open on Horizon Drive. The Hilton becomes the city’s swankiest place to spend the night.

The Jockey Club becomes a hot night spot. The Western Colorado Center for the Arts remodels and expands their facility at Seventh Street and Orchard Avenue. Amtrak replaces local railroad passenger service as the Denver and Rio Grande California Zephyr makes its last run.

The Redlands Parkway opens and nearby, the Lucy Ferril Ela Audubon Sanctuary is established. Long-awaited subsidized housing for the elderly increases with the opening of Ratekin Towers on Main Street and Nellie Bechtel Gardens on North 15th Street.

The Junior Service League, a group of women dedicated to serving the community, is organized and the first local Cinco De Mayo celebration is held on Main Street. Area flooding of the Colorado River reclaims gravel pits and makes headlines across the nation and the Black Bridge over the Gunnison River is abandoned.

To view an ongoing photo gallery of The Daily Sentinel’s 120 years project, go to GJSentinel.com.


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