Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Roanoke Island Historical Association to receive large grant

Waterfront gazebo project receives nod

Dare County may finally get that large meeting space community leaders believe is so badly needed for sizable gatherings.

The Roanoke Island Historical Association (RIHA), producers of The Lost Colony, was awarded a $95,000 grant from the Dare County Tourism Board on Feb. 17 to use to renovate The Gazebo, a 6,000-square-foot, waterfront building on the grounds of The Lost Colony.

The grant money came from the Natural, Cultural and Historic account of the tourism board's long-term restricted funds, according to Visitors Bureau Director Lee Nettles.

He added that The Gazebo is just about the largest meeting space in the area and with certain improvements such as heating and cooling, it can be used year-round.

"We're all pretty excited about it," Nettles said on Monday.

He said it could enable RIHA to offer productions in the shoulder seasons, which is the goal of the tourism board, which does business as the Outer Banks Visitor Bureau.

Nettles said it would be "kinda neat" to see performances there and perhaps wedding receptions too, which would be a "unique offering" when coupled with the beautiful outdoor wedding venue at the adjacent Elizabethan Gardens.

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