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Fine Arts facility to open June, 2019

By Staff | Sep 22, 2017

Christensen Construction has begun ground work on the fine arts facility at the Estherville campus of Iowa Lakes Community College. The new facility is funded through a bond that passed in March of 2016.

Jolene Rogers, Executive Director of Community & Business Relations for the college said, “This building was designed with love by Brett Fuelberth and Carol Ayers. [The two] have put so much into this facility, which will enrich the college experience for so many students.”

Ayers, who is in her 29th year as instrumental music director, has coalesced notes, designs, and ideas from many fine arts buildings across Iowa and the nation over the years, and many of those ideas went into the design of the new building, Rogers said.

Rogers continued, “Convocation is something that will benefit from the building, too. What a wonderful stage to put them on as we learn about diversity, inclusion, and overcoming difficulties.”

Institutional Advancement Manager and secretary of the Board of Directors Tony Condon said, “We look forward to community involvement, opening [the facility] to entities throughout the area.”

The college is currently beginning a campaign to sell seats at in the performance space for $500 each. The seats will come in three sizes: 24, 21 and 20 inches. Individuals, organizations, and businesses may purchase one or more seats.

Condon said, “They will have their name laser-engraved on a 1-by-3-inch plaque on the arm of a chair. The sooner they come to us, the more choice of location of the chair, or the possibility of a family, company or organization purchasing several or a row together.”

The plaques have the option of a company logo, and indication of in memory or honor of anyone, Condon said.

Iowa Lakes President Val Newhouse said, “This community has always stepped up, and for that we are always appreciative.”

The Steinway D piano, the largest grand piano the Steinway company makes, will be moved from the current gymnasium stage to the new performance space, Fuelberth said.

Ayers said, “One unique feature of the building is a loading dock.” Ayers said other nearby facilities do not include a loading dock, and many performers and crews are unable or unwilling to unload gear to the ground only to have to haul it up again to get to the stage.

“We will be able to host events no one else can host,” Ayers said.

The next fundraising event for the Iowa Lakes Community College scholarship fund will be a non-event, Newhouse said. The foundation will host a live event on Facebook Live and other social media, and supporters can host house parties or just their own household and join the fun at the appointed time in a toast from home.

The next event for the music department is a coffeehouse taking place Oct. 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the student center of the Estherville campus.