Reporter/Columnist for the Colorado Springs Indy and Business Journal
“Growing up in Colorado Springs in the 40’s and 50’s, the 1923 City Auditorium was the center of…well, of everything. Funded and created by Springs voters, it was treasured for generations. My first actual date (with the beautiful Julie Smith, may she rest in peace!) was to hear Marty Robbins at the Aud. A couple of years later, I was one of hundreds of members of the Colorado Springs High School class of 1958 to walk across the Auditorium stage and receive a diploma at our graduation ceremony.
During subsequent decades the Auditorium remained fun, relevant and indispensable – but things changed in the early 1990’s. The city was too broke to maintain it properly, let alone renovate it. City staff floated a proposal to gut the building and transform it into a new municipal court building. Mayor Bob Isaac (also a CSHS grad!) and I vocally opposed the scheme and our fellow Council Members followed suit.
We had managed to save it, but the city still couldn’t afford to keep it up. So it gradually deteriorated, and many users sought other venues. The noble old building seemed doomed – how could any entity, private or public, possibly raise the tens of millions that would be needed to restore, renovate, repurpose and reanimate our municipal treasure?
Enter Linda Weise, with a bold, complex and utterly practical scheme to achieve the apparently impossible. Against all odds, the Auditorium will once again become a center for community creative endeavors, a place that will thrive for generations to come. Linda’s vision will and must prevail – there is no Plan B. So get ‘em, Linda – Godspeed!”
– John Hazelhurst, Reporter/Columnist for the Colorado Springs Indy and Business Journal