Marion Dedicates New Amphitheater

By Forrest Saunders

MARION, Iowa — There’s something new in Marion that will bring music to anyone’s ears. Saturday afternoon brought the dedication of the Klopfenstein Amphitheater for the Performing Arts at Lowe Park.

Construction of the $1.5 million project started last July, and finished in December. Marion had to wait for Saturday to hear the first notes played at the venue.

The amphitheater’s 50-foot stage was designed to host local bands, high school plays, regional performers, even weddings. The steel canopy above was designed to look like oak leaves branching out toward the audience.

Mayor Allen Bouska said the facility has set the stage for new opportunities in Marion.

“This is a great gathering spot for the families. We expect to really use this in our Blue Zone [project], everything,” Bouska said.

The idea for the amphitheater came up in a 2009 chamber of commerce initiative called Imagine8. Marion residents were asked to think of eight projects that would improve the town. People identified an amphitheater as a need.

The venue was named after former Marion mayor Vic Klopfenstein and his wife Pat. They’re lifelong Marion residents who’ve stayed involved in the community.

“Well, that’s quite an honor. We’re pretty humbled by it,” said Klopfenstein. “I think it’s going to add a little more quality of life to our community.”

l Comments: (319) 368-8610; forrest.saunders@kcrg.com

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