I’ve been inside the Memorial Coliseum about 30 times over the years. As a kid, I went there to see Ringling Brothers and Disney on Ice. One time my parents got amazing tickets see the Blazers play the Lakers. We were in the 6th row! The game went into overtime and when we walked out… there was about 6 inches of snow on the ground.
One time I went to a cat show. In high school, my band marched THROUGH the coliseum. Another time I saw Blink 182 and Bad Religion. In 2008, I saw Barack Obama speak during his campaign.
Bottom line, I’ve been inside the coliseum MANY times. But when I walked inside a couple weeks ago to see a Winterhawk’s game with my family….something was different. I’d never seen the room look like this before.
You know what was different? They opened the curtains! I didn’t even know there was curtains! At all the events I’ve been to inside that building, never once did they open the curtains. What the hell? Why keep the room dark, when you could have a all that sunlight pouring in.
There’s so much debate about what to do with the Coliseum. Opening the curtains reminded me, just how cool that building is. My personal opinion, and I’m sure some of my friends are sick of hearing me rant about this, is to rip out the bowl in the middle and put in a waterpark. That would be so cool, a great tourist attraction and a huge money maker for the the city, (85 degree escape in the middle of Portland. Don’t tell me you wouldn’t be tempted after 3 months straight of cold non-stop rain). Or we could turn it into a concert venue with a view of the city. How about a gym or athletic center? Other people have suggested turning it into an indoor garden to grow food for the city or an amusement park. I have a feeling, like so many important decisions in Portland, this will be debated for years. But the bottom line… is that the curtains have to go.