They came to get formal approval by the city council of a new performing arts pavilion at Devil’s Lake Regatta Park, but they came away with only words of encouragement. That’s because the Lincoln City City Council wasn’t sure how well the project would fit in with the neighborhood. Promotors, recent graduates of the Ford Family Foundation Leadership Class, said they were under a tight timeline to remain eligible for a foundation grant to help pay for the first phase of the project, a flat stage, with no walls or ceiling, facing uphill from the west side of the park’s childrens playground.
Councilors appeared uneasy with the idea in that project supporters said there would be live music, musical plays, and young people who are just getting the hang of rock band music, practicing on the stage. One councilor noted that such uses without walls or a ceiling might cause the music to reverberate around the area and disturb the neighbors. Supporters said they don’t have to money yet to completely build the pavilion, but wanted the city’s approval to move ahead with the project and to raise money and enlist volunteer labor to build it.
In the end the council said they supported the idea but in no way should it be construed as formal approval. The supporters said that will do for now. They’d get busy working with the neighbors to win them over while trying to raise grant matching money from the community to finish the whole pavilion.
The site at Regatta Park was a popular one back in the 1930’s when there were boat races and sailing regattas and other large gatherings for picnics and social events. Historic pictures also show a modest performance stage at that location which supporters say would be wonderful to bring back to add to the cultural and social quality of life in Lincoln City.
It now appears to be up to the Ford Family Foundation Leadership class to convince the Regatta Park neighborhood that it should all be brought back after being dismantled roughly 15 years ago. (Correction: instead of 70 years ago in original story.)