Plans to build a permanent storage facility and beverage tent in Whistle Stop Park are moving ahead, but the project co-sponsors Niwot Business Association (NBA) and Niwot Cultural Arts Association (NCAA) still need to raise approximately $90,000 to fully fund the construction.
According to Bruce Warren, NCAA president and Rock & Rails showrunner, the general contractor’s final cost estimate to construct the 990-square foot structure is just under $127,000. So far, the two organizations have raised about $35,000 through a combination of reserve funds, private donations, and the tip jar proceeds from the opening night of the summer concert series. Warren said that the rest will come from this year’s Rock & Rails revenues and a community fundraising campaign. Donors of $100 or more will be recognized on a plaque.
“The building is a natural extension of the NCAA’s efforts to improve the park, and to make the Rock & Rails concert series run smoothly. We think concert-goers will experience shorter lines and quicker service. Our volunteer servers are excited about it too,” Warren said.
The new facility will be located in the southwest corner of the park, in roughly the same location as the current beverage tent. In a nod to the town’s railroad origins, local architect and NCAA vice-president Anne Postle designed the small building to resemble a depot. It will have electrical service, allowing for refrigeration, freezer for ice storage, and air-conditioning, but there won’t be running water. The building will also provide much-needed indoor storage for the beer trailer, as well as the flatbed trailer used by the Niwot Community Semi-Marching Free Grange Band and other community organizations. It will also be used to store the park’s barrels and boards in the off season, resulting in less maintenance.
Plans for the improvements are under review by the Boulder County Land Use Department. Provided there are no delays there, construction is slated to begin in the first week of September.