Thank you David and Lois Butterfield. Your generosity humbles me personally and, with no right, but nevertheless, thank you very much on behalf of the current and future community.
As Chris Trout said, “This is your moment, Idyllwild. Every barrier has been removed. It is now up to all of us to make the Idyllwild Community Center [nee the Butterfield Family Center] a reality.”
All of the volunteers — time, food and tools — who contributed to construction of the playground on the ICC site made a substantial impression on the Butterfields.
It was a recreation of the stories about the community’s collective construction of Town Hall.
Hammering, sawing and painting won’t begin immediately. Several steps, including obtaining a revised county use permit will occur over the next year. But the Community Center board hopes these mellifluous sounds can again waft through our hamlet in 2014.
I am truly amazed at this gift. It’s not simply a square building with water and electricity. When this phase of the Community Center is completed, we’ll have an amphitheatre for performances, especially the summer concert series, significant dust-free parking and a protected vista along the entrance to town.
Reading about the attendance at the summer concerts and the town’s enjoyment also impressed our benefactors. While I haven’t heard from Ken Dahleen, I’m sure he’s proud that his idea to shift the concert series from the State Park site to the then new ICC site has contributed to its future development.
I have no doubt that last June’s effort to erect a plastic fort and slides can easily be repeated when the new facility is ready for construction, since it will benefit a much larger segment of the community — teens, adults, seniors and youngsters.
So rest and prepare during 2013 to be in shape in 2014 to help create a new and contemporary Idyllwild Community Center.
I’m sure it won’t be easy — otherwise, it wouldn’t have the “Made in Idyllwild” scars — but I am sure we can do it. The property has been acquired, so we don’t have to shop and argue over the setting. The funds are now available, so we don’t have to supplicate, beg, and be embarrassed.
Those obstacles have been removed. We do have to plan, negotiate, organize and then volunteer. But isn’t this what the community does best?
And if you want some practice before 2014, think about Idyllwild Fire’s potential auxiliary. That organization is just beginning, so their first steps will be defining mission, goals, funding sources and projects.
The Community Center comes with several of those steps already in place.
As the planning proceeds, we promise to keep you informed, share the plans and designs so you can envision the facility.