Amphitheatre Stage, Box Office Poured

Amphitheatre Stage, Box Office Poured Click to Enlarge Photo: Jake Judd (KNSI)

(KNSI) - By this time next year, the Waite Park Amphitheatre will be hosting events.

Construction started on what is the largest project in Waite Park's history in October 2018 and continued until the ground froze.

Construction started up again in May and has been ongoing since.

The workers have finished preparing the ground, and the concrete stage has been poured.

Workers are now building the footings and pouring the foundations for the seating area, concession stand, restroom, and box office.

Waite Park City Administrator Shaunna Johnson says they toured around 20 amphitheaters around the Midwest but think the site in the Transformer quarry brings a particular element.

"There is a lot of really cool places, but none that have a lot of the natural beauty that this place does. This area is known for its quarries, and we've used them in so many interesting ways, and we are very excited that we can bring a lot more of those natural elements to such a beautiful piece of property."

She says the 5,000-seat venue can be used for so, much more than just concerts.

"It's great that we can provide National entertainment, but that's not the only thing that we hope to do out here. We have really tried to create a flexible space that will allow this to be used for events that you and I can't even think of today."

She says the amphitheater could have food festivals, movies in the park, dinner theatres, and host weddings.

The 25-acre site will include walking trails that could be open year-round, and there's room to add a park, a scenic overlook, and a picnic area.

Five million dollars of the project is coming from state bonding and another five million from the city's local option sales tax.

The amphitheater still needs about two million dollars to finish, and the city plans to fundraise for it or tap into more sales tax money.

The project will be finished, weather permitting, in May or June 2020. The city will hold an open house at the construction site on September 16th when the amphitheater's official name will be unveiled.

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