Hurricane Ike hit southeast Texas in September of last year, and Mitchell Pavilion spokesperson Courtney Galle says their popular outdoor performing arts center was just one of its many victims. The damage was major.
“The pavilion suffered severe damage to its Teflon coated fiberglass roof structure, and the support structure that held up the roof in the reserved seating area.”
Galle says the total for the storm’s damages added up to more than three million dollars, and engineers told the Pavilion managers they should keep it closed until it could be completely repaired. The Board of Directors decided this was a great opportunity to make some much needed improvements, most notably, adding more covered seating.
“It was a 9.5 million dollar renovation that included construction of approximately 2000 new reserved seats, and a larger canopy structure to cover all of the 6500 seats. Lawn capacity stayed approximately about the same, and so did our overall capacity, but we’ve been able to add in the 2000 new seats and then cover all of those seats to make it a 6500 seat covered venue.”
Total capacity at the Pavilion — covered and lawn seating — is just over sixteen thousand.
Galle says this grand reopening is a great way to begin the new and improved Mitchell Pavilion’s 20th season, which includes the Houston Symphony summer concerts and array of shows by Kenny Chesney, Rascal Flatts, Kid Rock, Rod Stewart and Chicago, just to name a few. There’s more information about the Mitchell Pavilion and that summer schedule at http://www.woodlandscenter.org/.
Jim Bell, KUHF, Houston Public Radio News.
The image is courtesy of the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion Organization.