Performing Arts Center
By Lallette Kistler
February 12, 2009
Thank you, Rodney Dial, for keeping the Performing Arts Center
debate alive. Excuse me for not recognizing your efforts towards
the cause. Indeed, had we consolidated, the funds would not be
available, and I do believe that you deserve a great deal of
credit for its demise.
First of all, let me correct an assumption. The Arts Council
already has a building. They purchased it last year. It is a
small place across the street from the Fireside. The Performing
Arts Center would be owned and operated by the First City Players,
which needs a much larger space than the Arts Council did.
Next, parking, I understand the issue. I used to work downtown.
It was a nightmare! I, personally, think the library should be
moved to the West End, or somewhere else on the bus route. We
cannot afford to lose another downtown parking lot, and I don
t see the library as a big tourist destination. We already have
a hospital wing that was built without adequate parking. Let
s not do the library the same way. On the same thread, I don
t understand why the new fire station can t be built somewhere
outside of the downtown core either. The current building would
make an excellent museum!
My point with parking is that most performances will be at night,
and daytime performances will be primarily for tourists off the
ship who don t have a car to park. Afternoon rehearsals/activities
are for school children who are dropped off and also don t have
a car to park. If the parents do park, it will most likely be
right in front of a nice restaurant or their favorite downtown
store to while away the hours adding to the sales tax revenue.
Yes, there will need to be some parking for staff etc., but not
nearly as much as there would be if it were turned back into
a restaurant. Its lack of windows would make it an undesirable
office location, or retail space. The office space that would
be rented is for the Ketchikan Theater Ballet, which would be
moving from down the street and would have no increased impact
on parking. As a matter of fact, it would move it away from a
very busy, crowded corner and help the overall traffic and parking.
The Fireside is in a relatively sleepy corner of downtown.
I have to say that I really don t deserve credit for any of this
great accomplishment. Elizabeth Nelson, Keith Smith and the First
City Players board of governors are the ones who have done all
the hard work. I m just trying to spread the word! The First
City Players has been working on this for longer than the bridge
project. Many smaller Alaskan communities with much less activity
than ours already have their own performing arts centers. Are
we really nowhere? I think not. Ketchikan is one of the top art
communities in the United States. Let s prove it!
Thank you, again, Mr. Dial for your contribution to our Performing
Arts Center, and your well wishes. I welcome your input.
About: " First City Players
member, advertiser, and donor & past board member, director
and conductor; Ketchikan Community Chorus and Orchestra member
& past board member and director; Ketchikan Community Concert
Band member; Arts Council member & donor; Voice & Piano
Teacher; Insurance and Financial Sales & Service; Drywall
Received February 09, 2009
- Published February 12, 2009
Arts Center By Rodney Dial
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