It was inevitable that winter weather was going to catch up with our construction calendar, and, almost like clockwork, on December 1st we had the first appreciable snowfall of the fall/winter season. While the blanket of white makes for some beautiful seasonal shots for our various marketing efforts, the snow and freezing conditions meant that the ongoing campus construction work had an added layer of difficulty. Thanks to the perseverance of our construction partners, a number of projects moved forward throughout December 2019 and January 2020.
Take a look at the ever-growing list of completed projects!
- Artist Patio foundation work was completed
- New access to the Venetian Theater Green Room area was made by cutting through existing backstage cinderblock walls
- Additional new rock walls were built
- Additional new lighting was installed
- New electrical upgrades and stormwater drains were installed underground
- An ecologically friendly bioswale was installed to capture stormwater runoff to be absorbed by special plantings
But perhaps most importantly, and most noticeably, one of the key components of the Visitor Experience Project — a new Box Office anchoring the Venetian Theater entrance — really started to take shape. In November’s post, we showed you where the Artist Patio had been — which is where the new Box Office will be. Over the last two months, the foundation was poured, framing and walls were erected, a roof was put on, counters and gates installed, and decisions were made about signage and pathways.
We are pleased to share the following from Alex Cutrone, Director of Visitor Services, about what this will soon mean for the staff and, most importantly, for you, our visitors:
Guests arriving to the Venetian Theater this summer will be greeted with plenty of new sights: benches, walkways, Sound Art — all part of Caramoor’s work to improve our guests’ experience here. One major site that will be pretty difficult to miss is our new Box Office, located right by the new main gate to the Venetian Theater. This Box Office and new entrance area, set to be completed later this spring, will make attending concerts in the Venetian Theater much easier.
Clearer Entrance [slash] Anyone who has frequented the Venetian Theater is familiar with the lineup of staff members, volunteers, and sign-holders/posters, all working their hardest to prevent guests from mistakenly going backstage rather than toward the pathways and venue’s North Gate entrances. The new layout of this area is designed to encourage guests to easily enter through a large, accessible entranceway, right in front of the Theater.
Infrastructure [slash] In building a dedicated Box Office, it was essential to make sure that it has the capabilities to support the needs of our audience. The temporary tent/counter location was not secure from the elements and while the Wifi was generally reliable, there were occasionally issues that would slow down the network and thus transactions for our guests. It is our intent that this new Box Office addresses these elemental and other technological issues. A more permanent structure will be better for the electronics and will be equipped with hard-wired data cables, all to keep our computers (and lines) running quickly and smoothly.
Rain Coverage [slash] A large, angular roof will surely help keep our guests dry as they wait for their tickets, especially since we use the Venetian Theater as a rain location for all of our other outdoor performances.
Storage [slash] Maybe not as exciting for visitors, but a huge plus for our staff, is our new storage space! Caramoor staff spend, on average, two-three hours per-event moving equipment from offices and storage locations up to the Venetian Theater. Now that there is permanent storage, we’ll be able to cut back on that heavy lifting and be ready and able to help welcome you to the Venetian Theater and surrounding area.
More Windows [slash] With additional space comes additional windows to make Box Office lines move even easier. Also, Membership makes a Difference! Members of Caramoor will have their own dedicated line/window for ticket purchases and pickups. Look for signage when you visit the Box Office to locate which window suits your needs best.
Integrated Merchandise [slash] Look forward to a brand new Merchandise Kiosk, located right next to the Box Office. A secure structure allows for a much easier and quicker set up for our merchandise team, making sure they can get you those t-shirts and sunglasses as quickly as possible. Plus, by moving the Merchandise Kiosk right next to the Theater, we’ve made it much easier for Artists to come out, meet fans, and sign merchandise!
Accessibility [slash] Always at the forefront of our team’s minds is making sure that our campus and events are as accessible to everyone as possible. In addition to making sure the new main gate to the Venetian Theater does not include steps, we’ve made sure that both the Merchandise Kiosk and the Box Office are as welcoming as can be. The Merchandise Kiosk is designed with a portable counter and displays, and the Box Office will feature a counter that will be at wheelchair-height.
These are just a few of the exciting improvements that you will see, starting this summer. Remember, Summer Season tickets are already on sale! The year-round Box Office & Gift Shop is open in the Rosen House if you want to stop on by and say hello! We hope to see you soon. — Alex Cutrone
To say that our seasonal and full-time staff are excited about a dedicated Box Office and Merchandise Kiosk is an understatement, so we hope that you too will be as excited as they are to see how these improvements enhance your visit this coming Summer Season.
We look forward to showing you more construction progress in the months ahead. Our thanks must be extended once again to our dedicated partners, including project managers Andron Construction Corporation, Pecord Excavating, and Lospoto Landscaping, Inc. who are working through variable winter weather conditions to keep this project on target. Please continue to ask Mother Nature to be kind for the remainder of the season, for their sake and ours. We are deep in the planning processes for landscaping and wayfinding and are ready to see how the campus transforms from the renderings we see on paper to a lush and vibrant environment.
As the final touches to our landscaping and amenities are being made, we hope that you might want to be counted alongside many other Inspired donors.
If we have Inspired you over the years, or if you are looking for a way to honor a loved one or celebrate a special occasion, please consider the following:
- Sponsor a new native tree; or
- Sponsor one of the new sustainably-harvested teak benches; or
- Make a campaign gift any amount to help with our many capital improvement projects wrapping up in time for the Opening Night of our 75th Anniversary Summer Season.
You and/or your loved one will be intrinsically linked to this pivotal moment in Caramoor’s history.
For more information, or to make an Inspired gift, please visit Caramoor.org/Inspire and click on the link about How to Help, or email Inspire@caramoor.org to have us contact you.
In the meantime, we’ll also be keeping you updated via our weekly e-blasts [sign up here!], the “Planning your Visit” emails, and through our various social media channels Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.
We know we’ve said it before, but Thank You for your patience and for paying attention to our important construction-related messaging. We want you to enjoy your visit, but also be safe during this transformative time. Please continue to visit our website for the most up-to-date information about the construction and any possible impact to the public.
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