Not only is this one of the finest music halls I've seen, but it's one of the most aesthetically pleasing designs of any building I've ever seen.
As a kid, I used to go with my grandpa, Bill “Poncho” Willis - a custodian at the Columbia Theater - and sneak in to watch movies every weekend, so I remember how the theater used to look. It looks like a different place now.
Once the final pieces are put into place, the Columbia Music Hall has the potential to be the shot in the arm this community needs - if we support it.
Personally, I don't know how anyone who has seen the inside of this hall could not support it.
There is a balcony that rivals those in the state's most popular music halls, and the decorative work around the railing and along the stage is one of a kind and gives the hall a very unique appeal.
As a musician myself, I am beyond excited at the opportunities this project could bring to the area. Whether you like two steppin' to the twang of a country band or moshing in the pit to a heavy metal group, the hall should be the perfect venue for many types of live entertainment.
And for people who have, for decades, had to travel dozens or hundreds of miles to see national acts, the hall will be a much welcome addition - especially considering it costs me about $60 in gas every time I travel to Dayton and back.
Scott has said that the sound system and lighting are on the way, purchased from the local music store Allegro, and office equipment is coming from Dell and Bihls.
In a perfect world, if you build it, they will come; but I think we all know this world is far from perfect.
Now, if we all could follow Scott's lead and spend our money locally, the hall has a great chance at success.
There are a lot of people here who want what's best for this city. And the best thing for this city is to support the businesses that are here. Not only does it keep local companies in business, it helps keep jobs here as well.
The ripple effect that would result from the success of this hall has the potential to be tremendous. Hotels, convenience stores, music stores, gas stations and many other businesses stand to benefit financially from the increased traffic and tourism that would come as a result of the hall.
It also will be a great opportunity for the arts community and another outlet for local bands to perform.
It has taken years for Scott's dream to come to fruition, but we're finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. And once Scott announces the opening date, I'll be waiting in line to get in.
Don Willis can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 244.