$75,000 stage almost completePublished 10:13pm Wednesday, March 27, 2013
A permanent stage at Bennett’s Creek Park will be a useful entertainment facility for years into the future, the city’s parks and recreation director says.
Under construction toward the back of the park since about the beginning of the year, the stage will be fully accessible for the handicapped and feature permanent lighting and electrical outlets for various pieces of performance equipment, Lakita Watson said.
“It’s very durable and aesthetically pleasing and fits right into the overall park setting,” she said.
The city realized that building a permanent stage, rather than relying on a transportable one, would be a smart investment, Watson said.
Funded from a capital maintenance line item in the Capital Improvement Plan — “utilized to make renovations and for additions to existing park facilities,” Watson said — the stage is costing a total of $75,458.56, according to city spokeswoman Diana Klink.
Five contractors are involved: Site Concepts, for the stage itself ($17,500); McEntire and Associates, for architectural and engineering services ($10,710); Nelson Enterprises, construction ($46,020); Holland Sand Pit, sand ($626), and Aggregate Transportation Corp, for stone ($602.56).
Watson added, “Every year we look at our overall inventory and look at parks and facilities that need to have renovations or additions.”
In a growing part of North Suffolk with lots of young families, Bennett’s Creek Park is well utilized for events such as weekly TGIF concerts during summer, last weekend’s Eggstravaganza, the Relay for Life and more.
“We decided it was time to do this type of facility at Bennett’s Creek Park on the back of the amount of events that we get out there,” Watson said.
Planning for the stage commenced about the beginning of last fall, she said, adding that her department looked to other permanent stages in the surrounding area for design inspiration.
The stage will be complete in the near future, Watson said. Recent inclement weather has delayed the project a little, she added.
“We see this facility as a positive addition to Bennett’s Creek Park, while being a cost-saving measure in regards to staffing and travel that the previous portable stage required,” she said.
Groups will be able to rent the stage, she added. “Right now we are looking at $300 for a full day,” she said.