Pete Capparelli (right), of the Idyllwild Community Center, helped install three Idyllwild Community Center “I’M HELPING” flags for restaurant owner Luis Solis (left), who said he is thrilled to be in Idyllwild and to have ICC flags flying in front of all three of his restaurants — Jade Mountain, Fratello’s and The Lumber Mill. Photo courtesy Chris Trout
Pete Capparelli (right), of the Idyllwild Community Center, helped install three Idyllwild Community Center “I’M HELPING” flags for restaurant owner Luis Solis (left), who said he is thrilled to be in Idyllwild and to have ICC flags flying in front of all three of his restaurants — Jade Mountain, Fratello’s and The Lumber Mill.
Photo courtesy Chris Trout

The Idyllwild Community Center board is hosting a community meeting at 5 p.m. Monday, April 4, at the Rustic Theatre.

“We want to make certain everyone in the community knows when the project will start and how it benefits the community and what will be part of Phase 1,” stated Janice Lyle, chair of the ICC board. “It will be informational and exciting.”

While Riverside County has not issued its final approval of the site’s Conditional Use Permit, the review is in the final stages, according to both Lyle and Chris Trout, advisor to the board for marketing. Some work is awaiting spring’s arrival and its abundant flora.

Expecting the CUP by late spring or early summer, the board intends to begin construction for Phase 1 in September. When construction commences, the site, including the playground, will be closed for public use.

The 2016 season of the Idyllwild Summer Concert Series will proceed without interruption and if winter provides favorable weather for construction, the board hopes the 2017 series will be performed at the new amphitheater.

Construction includes considerable grading on the upper level and creation of permanent parking sites, rather than parking anywhere on the lot. The creation of an amphitheater suitable for acoustic and non-acoustic events is being built against the hillside between Strawberry Creek and the roadway level, according to Trout.

The theater will have a stage, back stage, dancing area in front and below the stage, and natural seating area, similar to the Holmes Amphitheater on the Idyllwild Arts campus.

Also, in conjunction with Village Center Enterprises, access to the site from Village Center Drive and parking near the base of the amphitheater will be available.

Lyle stressed that all the current users (such as yoga and pickleball) of the ICC site will have better facilities and use after construction is completed.

The community meeting begins at 5 p.m.; since it is at the Rustic Theatre, it must end and the area must be cleared by 6:30 p.m. for the evening movie.

Lyle will discuss ICC’s mission and its history, going back to the 1990s, and the current plans.

Jim Marsh, architect, and Robert Priefer, designer, will discuss the process with the county for gaining approval to create the Community Center and its facilities.

“There will be an opportunity for questions, suggestions and comments,” Trout added. “The community designated how they’d like [the site to be developed] and we’ve incorporated this into the plans.”

And Lyle hopes suggestions about future use and ideas will be offered, too.

Fundraising also will be on the agenda Monday evening. Suzy Capparelli of ICC’s Building Capital Campaign Committee will talk about and invite the public to the second-annual “Let’s Build It” concert, which will be held Saturday, June 11, at Idyllwild Arts Academy.

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