Saturday, October 11, 2008

New Visitors Center

It's now real and open. The old visitors center, built in 1966, is in the distance just off the right corner of the new building. It opened 10:00 am yesterday, October 10th, with the opening dedication at 3:00 pm with Superintendent Uberuaga introducing all the guests. The ceremony lasted about an hour with opening a prayer and story by two Native Americans followed by speeches by five other guests including the Secretary of Interior Kempthorne and US Representative Norm Dicks.

The place is simply awesome. It's spacious with many information booths, a cafe and a theater, and a big open space with 60-foot ceilings. It's not only enviromental, with many features to allow it to easily survive the worst winter weather and snow depth (roof shape and design and shutters) and energy efficient, with heating/cooling system, materials, etc. In short it's way cool and easily blends into the new reburbished Paradise Inn (May 2008) and Guide Services building (last year).

The old building will be removed over the next two years and the land refurbished into additional parking for peak days and hours during the summer tourist season and landscaping. This will give the whole space at Paradise ready for decades. What can't you say against the wise use of taxpayers' money in a beautiful place.

A gift to ourselves and our nation.

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