The Bob White showed its promise on Saturday, thanks to Nick Storie and his commitment to involving the community in his planning and visioning for the property. Unfortunately, the community only got a glimpse of that promise from the bitter, cold parking lot, as the crowd was too large to accommodate inside. I was told this was not decided by Nick, rather the fire inspector on site determined that the building was not quite ready to safely take visitors.
So it was, on a cold Saturday morning, the neighborhood showed up in full, eager to see what the new community prize would look like. And although all the visioning and questioning took place outside, the sentiment did not change, as folks seemed genuinely interested in the plans and even more so excited and ready to participate in the planning.
Voodoo Doughnuts made the morning freeze much more tolerable (thanks, Nick), and the back parking lot actually allowed for easy access to the architectural plans, as multiple blueprints of the building were on display. Spread out across several tables, the blueprints were provided solely for display and to engage the crowd. In fact, markers were provided for people to insert their own visions on to the blueprint. In addition, there were two easels set up for people to leave comments and suggestions. By far, the most common suggestion was “pizza, beer, and movies.” It was clear that FoPo craves its own independent movie theater, where food and libations go together, a la the Laurelhurst, Bagdad, or Mission Theater. I guess we all owe the McMenamin brothers thanks for that.
Nick doesn’t intend to be the next McMenamin’s, however. He’s thinking much bigger than that, and all ideas are on the table, as they say. Some of the other suggestions proposed by those attending were: a rock-climbing wall in the back warehouse, an adjoining alleyway restaurant, an indoor skate park, and rental space for various performance artists. Regardless of what takes shape, Nick is intent on making it useful for the community. You are encouraged to sign up for the mailing list by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or joining the facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Historic-Bob-White-Theatre/150923238345412
And naturally, any and all comments will be taken here, too.