Precious water takes center stage at event

Ultimately, Deanna Jenne’s thoughts and feelings crystallized to this: “Water is not a commodity and it’s not renewable,” she explained. “What we got in the very beginning of time is all we have.”

It was that devotion to a finite resource that inspired her to organize Water Comes First, a two-day event featuring concerts, lectures and workshops Friday and Saturday at the Avalon Theater, the KAFM Radio Room, Yoga West Studio and at a special ceremony on the Colorado Riverfront.

Jenne, who lives in Mesa, said she was inspired to “take a stand for something that I love, which is the Colorado River and the watershed,” she explained. “I feel like we are really not paying very good attention to our water.”

Water Comes First will feature National Geographic photographer Paul Colangelo’s film “Sacred Headwaters” on Saturday, a concert by singer/songwriter Timothy Hill Sunday night at Yoga West Studio and a 7:30 a.m. Gratitude Ceremony Sunday at Watson Island.

The event also will feature workshops with Eliot Cowan, author of “Plant Spirit Medicine,” and Charles Eisenstein, author of “Sacred Economics: Money, Gift & Society in the Age of Transition,” among other speakers.

Water Comes First will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Avalon Theater; doors open at 8 a.m. Admission is based on a gift economy model, with attendees advised to give what they can afford, with a recommended minimum gift amount suggested at $25.

However, nobody will be turned away if they can’t pay, according to the event’s website.

Jenne said the event is particularly timely since the Colorado River was named American Rivers’ most endangered river Wednesday.

“I just want myself and other people to really take good care of our waters,” she explained. “And so in putting this together, it’s kind of a call to act in a very, very intensive way in our lives so that we see that water is sacred.”

For more information about Water Comes First, go to or, or call 970-210-9520.


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